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Was Mona Lisa Modeled on a Man? New Research Raises Questions About da Vinci Masterpiece (VIDEO)

Was Mona Lisa modeled on a man? An Italian researcher saysLeonardo da Vinci’s longtime male apprentice, nicknamed Salai, was the model forthe 16th-century masterpiece. Silvano Vinceti says noblewoman Lisa del Giocondo,commonly accepted as the subject of the portrait, was merely the initialinspiration. Vincenti says da Vinci clearly inserted facial characteristics ofSalai in the final version. And his microscopic analysis of a high-qualitydigital copy shows a tiny S for Salai and an L for Leonardo in Mona Lisa’s eyes.Experts at the Louvre, quickly dismissed Vinceti’s claims, saying earlier testsshowed no inscriptions, letters, or numbers and that tiny cracks in thepainting “have often been the subject of overinterpretation.”