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Have archeologists located Mona Lisa's skeleton?

Archeologists in Florence, Italy, have found a tomb that they say might hold the remains of Lisa Gherardini, who was immortalized in Leonardo Da Vinci's iconic 'Mona Lisa.'

By Mounira Al HmoudContributor / July 18, 2012

Archaeologists say that they might have found the bones of Lisa Gherardini, the subject of Leonardo Da Vinci's 'Mona Lisa,' in a tomb in Florence, Italy.

Reunion de Musees Nationaux di Parigi and Journal des Arts/AP


Archaeologists in Florence, Italy, might have found the remains of the world's most famous artistic subject.  

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The Italian news agency ANSA reports that a team led by art historian Silvano Vincenti, head of the National Committee for the Enhancement of Historical, Cultural and Environmental Heritage, may have discovered a tomb in a former convent that could contain the skeleton of Lisa Gherardini, thought to be the subject of Leonardo Da Vinci's 'Mona Lisa.'

Vinceti says that, after the year 1500, only two women were buried at the medieval convent of St. Ursula: Mona Lisa Gherardini, in 1542, and another noblewoman, Maria del Riccio.

Gherardini is widely believed to have inspired the Da Vinci's iconic painting. The wife of wealthy merchant Francesco del Giocondo, she lived at the convent after her husband died, according to ANSA.

Vinceti told ABC News the bones will be tested at the University of Bologna for DNA matches to the bones of Gherardini's two sons, who were buried in Florence’s Santissima Annunziata church

Discovery News reports that the project ultimately aims to reconstruct the faces of the women buried there, perhaps even recreating Mona Lisa's mysterious smile.

"I'm confident we're going to find something," Vinceti told ANSA.


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