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Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Gay lover inspired Mona Lisa face says Italian art historian

An Italian art researcher and historian believes Leonardo da Vinci modeled the Mona Lisa on the face of his young male lover.

Silvano Vinceti says he and his fellow researchers believe the young Gian Giacomo Caprotti, who was one of da Vinci's closest companions, was his lover and inspired the enigmatic face. Da Vinci is generally believed to have been gay. 

The historians say that there are striking similarities between the Mona Lisa face and other images based on Caprotti, such as two of St John the Baptist and a drawing, Angel Incarnate.

Caprotti was nicknamed the Little Devil and and although he stole from, and caused many problems for, the artist and inventor he was always forgiven by Da Vinci.

However, other art historians are sceptical of the claim, with one Da Vinci authority calling it "groundless."


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