A picture painted in the 1850s has confused many people when the girl in the picture holds an object that looks exactly like a smartphone.
The girl in the 19th century painting “The Expected One” holds an object that looks like a smartphone. (Image: Wikipedia)
A 19th-century painting by Austrian artist Ferdinand Georg Waldmũller is on display at the Neue Pinakothek museum in Munich, Germany.
The painting depicts a woman in 19th-century garb walking along a country trail with her eyes fixed on the smartphone-like object in her hand, according to Motherboard.
The person who discovered the confusing detail in the painting “The Expected One” was Peter Russell, a retired civil servant.
In the picture, beside the woman walking leisurely on the dirt road, there is a man kneeling waiting for her to approach not far away with a pink flower in his hand. However, all the woman’s attention was focused on the small rectangular object she was holding in her hand, an image reminiscent of today’s smartphone addicts on the street.
In fact, the object was not a smartphone but a hymn book.
“What impressed me the most was the huge change in the interpretation of the painting that lifted the whole scene. Around 1850 – 1860, everyone who viewed the picture would recognize the object the girl was busy looking at as a hymn book. Today, anyone will recognize the similarity between the scene in the picture and the image of a young girl engrossed in social networks on a smartphone,” shared Russell.
This is not the only picture with the appearance of “smartphone”. In August, a painting from 1937 caused controversy. In the painting, set in the 17th century, a Native American holds a rather square object, like a smartphone.
The man in the center of the picture is William Pynchon, born in 1590 and a fairly successful merchant. He stood with Native Americans more than 300 years before the invention of the telephone. The painting itself was drawn by an artist some 70 years before the first iPhone appeared.
Many viewers of the painting believe that this is evidence of time travel. But historian Daniel Brown said the mysterious object the man was holding was most likely just a mirror.
Mirrors have been popular since the 17th century. Another theory is that a man who lived 400 years ago held a religious book in his hand.
Mr. Brown said it could be the Gospel. “This book did exist at the time and it was about the same size as what the man in the painting was holding in his hand.”