Just when you thought the “Da Vinci Code” craze had mercifully passed, here comes another potential puzzle hidden in the “Mona Lisa”: Members of Italy’s National Committee for Cultural Heritage say they have found symbols embedded in the eyes of Leonardo da Vinci’s iconic portrait. —KA
“To the naked [eye] the symbols are not visible but with a magnifying glass they can clearly be seen,” said Silvano Vinceti, president of the Committee.
... Mr Vinceti added: “Da Vinci put a special emphasis on the Mona Lisa and we know that in the last years of his life he took the painting with him everywhere—he didn’t like it to leave his side and carried it in a secure case.
“We also know that Da Vinci was very esoteric and used symbols in his work to give out messages and we have examined other paintings and have not found any similar numbers or letters.
“Painters we have spoken to have also said they are unlikely to have been put there by mistake so we are confident that they are a message from Da Vinci and were specifically inserted into the eyes by him.
“What adds to the intrigue is that they are in the pupils, the darkest part of the eyes ... if he had wanted them to be more widely seen then he would have put them into the more visible white parts of the eyes.”