The search is on for the remains of the Mona Lisa, researchers have localized the area where the remains of La Giaconda have rested for centuries. And the dig is on, literally.

It took archaeologists about two weeks to find the crypt in a deserted convent; they used ground penetrating radar, the same type of radar used for military purposes, only this time it was art research-pure and simple.

The hunt is on for Lisa Gherardini Del Giacondo, she is believed to have been the model for the Mona Lisa. The crypt was located underground in the St. Ursula convent in Florence. When they removed about a foot of concrete they found ancient bricks that were 35 inches wide, along with two crypts they found various pieces of pottery and old bones. The crypts are as yet untouched, that will take another few days.

The archaeologists believe that one of the tombs contains the remains of La Giaconda, as she is called in Italy. That in itself is remarkable, but there is more, they will compare the DNA with that of her children and hopefully be able to reconstruct her face and match Leonardo's painting. The centuries old mystery of who was the Mona Lisa may soon be solved.

All the theories and intellectual debate that continued for ages may soon stop, but is the identity of the model going to dilute and diminish the enigma that is La Giaconda? Or will it add more mystique and perpetuate the magic of Leonardo's masterpiece?

Till next time.
Margot Justes
A Hotel in Paris

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Comment by I. J. Parker on May 16, 2011 at 1:00am
The reason for this (it used to be called desecration) escapes me.  Must we know?

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