Legendary Italian warrior exhumed to 'understand his life and death' in 16th century

Last Updated: Tue, Nov 27, 2012 11:30 hrs

Italian researchers have exhumed the tomb of one of the most celebrated condottieri, mercenary soldiers, of the Renaissance, Giovanni de' Medici in a bid to understand the life and death of the charismatic 16th century army commander.

Also known as 'Giovanni dalle Bande Nere' for the black bands of mourning he wore after the death of Pope Leo X, is buried in the Medici Chapels in Florence with his wife, Maria Salviati.

According to Discovery News, the couple married in 1516, when she was 17 and he was 18.

The couple had a child, Cosimo I, from the marriage, who reigned as the first Grand Duke of Tuscany, creating the Uffizi and the magnificent Boboli Gardens as well as finishing the Pitti Palace, the report said.

"On Monday, a large rock that covered the burial chamber of the family was raised to reveal two zinc boxes with the bones of the married couple," Florence's superintendence said.

Led by Gino Fornaciari, professor of forensic anthropology and director of the pathology Museum at the University of Pisa, the research consists of a 'thorough analysis, which includes medical, paleopathological and anthropological investigations of the remains, the report said.

"We aim to better understand the cause of death and the kind of surgery carried on the Medici warrior," the superintendency said. (ANI)

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