A team of scientists and scientists have formulated plans to exhume the presumed remains of Leonardo da Vinci and have requested that his tomb at Amboise Castle in the Loire valley be opened. Why?
The group want to use the skull to reconstruct his face to determine whether the Mona Lisa is actually a self-portrait in disguise.
The identity of the Mona Lisa has been shrouded in mystery for centuries and scholars have variously speculated that the woman in the picture was Lisa Gherardini, the wife of a Florentine merchant, Leonardo’s mother and, because of his presumed homosexuality and love of riddles, a self-portrait of himself as a woman.
Leonardo da Vinci was originally buried in a church that was destroyed during the French revolution of 1789 and his remains were subsequently reburied in the castle’s smaller chapel of Saint-Hubert in 1874. The inscription on the tomb describes the contents as ‘presumed’ to be those of da Vinci.
The group hope to get the go ahead in the summer.
Is it really that important? Surely, the best that the group could hope for after their desecration is a conclusion that it ‘could be’ a self-portrait, nothing definitive. And so the speculation would continue.