Eye Color

From Thomas Jefferson Encyclopedia

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-There seems to be no concensus on Thomas Jefferson's '''eye color'''. They were variously described by family, friends, employees, and others as blue, gray, "light," hazel, and combinations thereof.+There seems to be no consensus on [[Thomas Jefferson]]'s '''eye color'''. They were variously described by family, friends, employees, and others as blue, gray, "light," hazel, and combinations thereof. An examination of Jefferson's life portraits does not clarify the issue; he is variously depicted with blue, hazel, and even brown eyes.
- +
== Contemporary Accounts == == Contemporary Accounts ==
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'''1801-1809.''' Joseph Delaplaine, visitor. "...his eyes are light..."<br> '''1801-1809.''' Joseph Delaplaine, visitor. "...his eyes are light..."<br>
-'''1806-1821.''' Edmund Bacon, overseer at Monticello. "He had blue eyes..."<br>+'''1806-1821.''' [[Edmund Bacon]], overseer at Monticello. "He had blue eyes..."<br>
'''1814.''' Francis Calley Grey, visitor. "...light gray eyes..."<br> '''1814.''' Francis Calley Grey, visitor. "...light gray eyes..."<br>
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== Secondhand Accounts == == Secondhand Accounts ==
-'''1858.''' [[Short Title List|Randall, ''Life'']]. "His full, deep set eyes, the prevailing color of which was light hazel (or flecks of hazel on a groundwork of grey)..." (p. 34)+'''1858.''' Randall, [[Short Title List|''Life'']]. "His full, deep set eyes, the prevailing color of which was light hazel (or flecks of hazel on a groundwork of grey)..." (p. 34)
-'''1871.''' Randolph, [[Short Title List|''Domestic Life'']]. "...his eye, hazel..."+'''1871.''' Randolph, [[Short Title List|''Domestic Life'']]. "...his eye, hazel." (p. 337)
-'''1948.''' [[Short Title List|Malone, vol. 1]]. "His eyes were hazel, though often described in later years as blue..." (p. 48)+'''1948.''' Malone, [[Short Title List|Jefferson,]] Vol. 1. "His eyes were hazel, though often described in later years as blue..." (p. 48)
-== Footnotes == 
- 
-== See Also == 
== Further Sources == == Further Sources ==
 +*Bush, [[Short Title List|''Life Portraits'']].
*Thomas Jefferson Foundation, Inc. "Physical Descriptions of Thomas Jefferson." [http://www.monticello.org/reports/people/descriptions.html http://www.monticello.org/reports/people/descriptions.html]. *Thomas Jefferson Foundation, Inc. "Physical Descriptions of Thomas Jefferson." [http://www.monticello.org/reports/people/descriptions.html http://www.monticello.org/reports/people/descriptions.html].
 +
 +[[Category:Personal Life]]
 +[[Category:Frequently Asked Questions]]

Current revision

There seems to be no consensus on Thomas Jefferson's eye color. They were variously described by family, friends, employees, and others as blue, gray, "light," hazel, and combinations thereof. An examination of Jefferson's life portraits does not clarify the issue; he is variously depicted with blue, hazel, and even brown eyes.

Contemporary Accounts

1801-1809. Joseph Delaplaine, visitor. "...his eyes are light..."

1806-1821. Edmund Bacon, overseer at Monticello. "He had blue eyes..."

1814. Francis Calley Grey, visitor. "...light gray eyes..."

1823. Alexander Hugh Holmes Stuart, visitor. "His eyes were light blue or gray..."

1824. Daniel Webster, visitor to Monticello. "His eyes are small, very light..."

Secondhand Accounts

1858. Randall, Life. "His full, deep set eyes, the prevailing color of which was light hazel (or flecks of hazel on a groundwork of grey)..." (p. 34)

1871. Randolph, Domestic Life. "...his eye, hazel." (p. 337)

1948. Malone, Jefferson, Vol. 1. "His eyes were hazel, though often described in later years as blue..." (p. 48)


Further Sources