Washington Post

How the 1911 theft of the Mona Lisa made it the world's most famous painting

Da Vinci painted his masterpiece in 1507, but it was only in the 19th century that critics begin to see the work as the pinnacle of Renaissance Florentine painting. Foto: Remy de la Mauviniere/AP

The heist happened in broad daylight.

On Aug. 21, 1911, a thief dressed in a white worker's smock entered the Louvre, closed because it was a Monday. In the Salon Carre, the Louvre's gallery of Renaissance treasures, he lifted a small painting off the wall and removed its glass shadow box. Hiding the canvas under his smock, he then walked out into the streets of Paris with his loot...

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