Tags: mona lisa | dna | test

Mona Lisa? Researchers Examine Remains Looking for Portrait's Subject

Image: Mona Lisa? Researchers Examine Remains Looking for Portrait's Subject

Monday, 12 Aug 2013 12:43 PM

By Alexandra Ward

The centuries-old mystery of the Mona Lisa may soon be solved as a team of Italian researchers prepares to conduct DNA testing on skeletal remains that could be the woman believed to have inspired Leonardo da Vinci's famous portrait.

Last year, excavators found several skeletons in the Martyrs' Crypt behind the main altar of Florence's Basilica della Santissima Annuziata. They believe that one of them could be that of Lisa Gherardini Del Giocondo, a merchant's wife who lived across the street from da Vinci. Gherardini is widely believed by art experts to be the identity of the woman featured in the 16th-century painting, according to NBC News.

Urgent: Should Obamacare be Repealed? Vote Here Now

"Right now we are carrying out carbon-14 tests on three of the eight skeletons found in St. Ursula, which could be the age Lisa Gherardini was when she died," Silvano Vinceti, who heads Italy's national committee for cultural heritage, told the ANSA news agency. "The carbon-14 test will tell us which of the three dates back to the 1500s. Only then will we know which skeleton to do the final DNA test on."

The generally accepted storyline is that Gherardini's husband commissioned the portrait to celebrate either Lisa's pregnancy in 1502 or the purchase of a house in 1503. After her husband died, Gherardini is believed to have become a nun. She died in 1542 at age 63 and was rumored to have been buried near the altar.

If DNA tests point to Gherardini, the next step would be to attempt facial recognition based on the bone structure, Vinceti said.

Latest: Do You Support Giving Illegals Citizenship? Vote Here Now

Related stories:

Secret of Da Vinci's 'Mona Lisa' Smile May Be Revealed by DNA

Millions of Bad Video Games to Be Exhumed in Atari Landfill Excavation

Cops to Exhume Remains in Boston Strangler Case  

© 2015 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
You May Also Like

Suge Knight a Fatal Hit-and-Run Suspect After Parking Lot Crash

Friday, 30 Jan 2015 07:35 AM

Rap mogul Marion "Suge" Knight is being questioned in a homicide after the Death Row Records founder turned himself into . . .

Brad Culpepper, Disabled NFL Player, Sued for Being 'Survivor'

Friday, 30 Jan 2015 07:10 AM

Former NFL player Brad Culpepper is being sued by an insurance company that claims he faked injuries from his football p . . .

Binge-Watching TV Associated with Depression, Say Experts

Friday, 30 Jan 2015 07:08 AM

Binge-watching TV may seem like a great way to relax, but a new study found that it could be a sign you're depressed and . . .

Top Stories

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved