She existed

There's more evidence to support the theory that 'the Mona Lisa' was in fact Lisa Gherardini, the wife of a wealthy Florentine silk merchant.

Over the years, art historians have given Leonardo Da Vinci's famous portrait multiple identities, ranging from a relative of the artist to a prostitute.

But in 1550, about 44 years after the painting was completed, the 16th century painter and art historian Giorgio Vasari claimed the portrait was of Lisa Gherardini Del Giocondo.

And now, the discovery of a will and a grave lend support to Vasari's theory.

Historian Giuseppe Pallanti has spent years researching the woman behind the portrait and has written two books on the subject.

His research shows Lisa married Francesco del Giocondo in 1495, when she was 16 years old.

Pallanti found the church's archives, which state, "Monna Lisa di Francesco del Giocondo died on 15 July 1542 and was buried in Sant'Orsola".

And apparently the Mona Lisa was well-loved – the church records show the whole community showed up to say goodbye at her funeral.

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