There is no physical description of Jesus in the Bible.

There is no physical description of Jesus in the Bible.

There is no scholarly agreement on the appearance of Jesus; over the centuries, he has been depicted in a multitude of ways.

The race and appearance of Jesus has been a topic of discussion since the days of early Christianity. There are no firsthand accounts of his physical appearance, and the New Testament is indifferent to physical appearance in general.[1] According to Biblical accounts, Jesus was a Galilean Jew. Most scholars consequently believe he would have been of Middle Eastern appearance.

Various theories about the race of Jesus have been advanced and debated.[2][3] By the Middle Ages, a number of documents, generally of unknown or questionable origin, had been composed and were circulating with details of the appearance of Jesus. Now these documents are mostly considered forgeries.[4][5][6] By the 19th century, theories that Jesus was non-Semitic were being developed, with writers suggesting he was variously white, black, or Indian.[7] However, as in other cases of the assignment of race to Biblical individuals, these claims have been mostly pseudoscientific, based on cultural stereotypes and societal trends rather than on scientific analysis.[8]:18

Many people have a mental image of Jesus drawn from artistic depictions. A wide range of depictions have appeared over the two millennia since Jesus's death, often influenced by cultural settings, political circumstances and theological contexts.[9][10] These images are often based on second- or third-hand interpretations of spurious sources, and are generally not historically accurate.[8]:44–45