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Comment & Response
September 12, 2019

Leonardo da Vinci Probably Did Not Have Strabismus

Author Affiliations
  • 1Byers Eye Institute, Stanford University School of Medicine, Palo Alto, California
  • 2Department of Ophthalmology, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California
JAMA Ophthalmol. 2019;137(11):1331-1332. doi:10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2019.2214

To the Editor The speculations on Leonardo da Vinci by Tyler1 in a recent issue of JAMA Ophthalmology are intriguing. But they are misleading when couched in language of scientific investigation and titled as evidence for a clinical disease. To my reading, the paintings purported to be by da Vinci have uncertain attribution, the interpretation of faces and ocular appearance is unconvincing, the measurements are of uncertain validity, and the premise that strabismus would improve artistic representation of depth is questionable. Tyler’s data could just as convincingly lead to the conclusions that da Vinci did not have strabismus or that the vagaries of artistic license prevent any conclusion at all.

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