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Has almost all Western art shown Jesus as a white man?

Wednesday, July 1, 2020
By Miriam Himelstein
This Fact Brief is responsive to conversations such as this one.
YES

Throughout the history of Europe and the lands it colonized, Jesus Christ has predominantly been portrayed as a white man. This can be traced back to some of the oldest known portrayals of Christ, from the early third century, with Christ depicted as having light skin and European features.

There is no scientific evidence of what Christ really looked like. Many historians believe that, based on his supposed lineage and geographic origin, Christ was likely similar in appearance to other Middle Eastern Jews, with olive skin, dark hair, and brown eyes.

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