Perhaps, after all these years, we’ve come one step closer to learning the secret behind Mona Lisa’s placid grin.
After all, you’ve probably heard the expression “in the eye of the beholder.” This definitive phrase takes on a whole new meaning, however, in light of a spectacular discovery by art historians: within the the eyes of Leonardo da Vinci’s famous painting, there appears to be actual hidden numbers and letters, the likes of which would have any Dan Brown fan marveling.
British news source the Daily Mail reported on the spectacular find recently which, according to Silvano Vinceti, president of Italy’s National Committee for Cultural Heritage “are not a mistake, and were put there by the artist.”
Within the “secret” etchings, Vinceti, who discovered them, says the letters “LV” can be seen guessing that these were merely the artist’s initials. Of similar symbols in Mona Lisa’s left eye, “It is very difficult to make them out clearly,” though he guesses they represent the letters CE, or a single letter “B.”
Secret etchings can be observed elsewhere in the famous painting, including the arch of the bridge seen in the distance over Lisa’s left shoulder (right side, from the viewer’s perspective). Vinceti believes these represent the number 72, though he has supposed “it could be an L and the number 2.” Taking it one step further, what if both symbols were actually letters; if we were to assume the “2” were actually a “G,” for instance (which doesn’t require too much of a stretch), could these have been the initials of Lisa del Giocondo, for whom da Vinci named the painting?