An Italian expert said this week the woman who posed for Leonardo Da Vinci’s famous Mona Lisa, also known as Gioconda, died in 1542 as a religious sister in a convent in Florence, where she also may have been buried.
According to the Italian daily “La Repubblica,” Giuseppe Pallanti, author of the book, “Mona Lisa Discovered: The True Identity of Leonardo’s Model,” recently discovered information on the death of Lisa Gherardini, the woman who scholars agree posed for one of Da Vinci’s master works, in the archives of a church in Florence indicating that “the wife of Francesco del Giocondo died on July 15, 1542 and was buried at Sant’Orsola.”
The church of Sant’Orsola, where Lisa Gherardini died at the age of 63, is in ruins and is located near the Basilica of San Lorenzo in Florence.
“It was to this convent that Mona Lisa brought her youngest daughter, Marietta, who later became a religious. And at that same place, as indicated in the last testament of her husband, who died four years before her, she lived out the last days of her life,” Pallanti said. The Italian scholar has been researching the archives of Florence for the past three years.
Another scholar and expert on Leonardo Da Vinci, Carlo Pedretti, thanked Pallanti for his discovery and requested that the ruins of the convent be searched in order to locate the remains of Lisa Gherardini. “Thanks to modern technology, scientists can determine her physical aspect, including the details of her face, and thus make an important contribution,” Pedretti stated.