Her smile has both perplexed and enslaved people for centuries despite the clandestine nature of her true identity.  Scientists in the Italian city of Florence however, have now claimed to have identified the blood line of the woman behind the enigmatic smile in the famed artwork. The artistic masterpiece is the Mona Lisa.

 

 

This mysterious woman is believed to be Lisa Gherardini, the wife of the Florentine silk merchant Francesco del Giocondo who commissioned the painting of his wife in 1503. The project is headed by Silvano Vinceti, a writer and researcher who also chairs Italy’s National Committee for the Promotion of Historic and Cultural Heritage. History tells us that Gherardini spent the last few years of her life in the Saint Orsola convent in Florence where the hunt for her bones began last year. To aid this process, Vinceti believes he can find the remains of atleast one of her blood relatives, in particular her son Piero, in a tomb in the Santissima Annunziata Basilica in Florence.

 

 

With razor-like precision, the scientists have cut a small hole in the floor of the basilica below which Leonardo’s muse’s family is believed to be buried. It is hoped that DNA obtained from the bones below the basilica will match that of one of the three women buried in the convent. Once this DNA match is made, scientists will read Gherardini’s genetic code to identify sequences that encode for recognition factors like eye colour and nose width and generate an image using her skull. If it matches Mona Lisa, history will be made.