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Sunday, February 20, 2005
Alessandro Vezzosi, director of a museum
dedicted to Leonardo da Vinci, presents
his rebuttal of historical claims made in
Dan Brown's "The Da Vinci Code"

Experts, clerics go on attack as novel's
friends, foes gather

ROME---Art experts and conservative
clerics are holding an unusual "trial" in
Leonardo Da Vinci's hometown aimed at sorting out
fact from fiction in the "The Da Vinci Code" after
many readers took the smash hit novel as gospel truth.

The event in Vinci, just outside of Florence, began
Friday with an opening statement by Alessandro Vezzosi,
director of a museum dedicated to Leonardo Da Vinci.
He said he will produce photographs and documents as
evidence of the mistake and historical inaccuracies
contained in Dan Brown's best seller.

"Leonardo is misrepresented and belittled,Vezzosi said
before the event began. "His importance is misunderstood.
He was man full of fantasy, inventions and genius'

The novel's contentions allegations --namely, tha Jesus
married Mary Magdalene and sired a bloodline -- have
provoked unprecedented protest among Roman Catholics and
Protestant conservatives, who say that Brown's characters
malign Christianity.

The book portrays Roman Catholic leaders as demonizing
women for centuries and covering up the truth about the
Holy Grail, which the novel says is Mary Magdalene herself.

Verzzosi said he will produce evidence through 120 photographs
based on documents and painting with the aim of "reassessing
and disclaiming the author" of the mystical thriller,
a mix of code-breaking, art history, secret societies,
religion and lore.

Verzzosi said one example of the novel's mistake is the
statement that the Mona Lisa was made of Leonardo's image.

"There's a very big difference between Mona Lisa's and
Leonardo's noses, mouths, eyes and expressions," he said,
adding that he will compare two portraits to prove it.

Brown has not said much about the controversy surrounding
the blockbuster book, but he told NBC's "Today" show in
June 2003 that while the novel's main character:
Robert Langdon, is fictional, "all of the art,
architecture, secret rituals, secret societies,
all of that is historical fact".

Organizers said there would be nobody speaking in the
book's defense and the "verdict" would be contained
within the presentations of the speakers.

But that does not mean the book will be completely
hung out to dry: Hundreds of fans were expected to
attend the trail.

"This initiative has recived a lot of interest,
with people calling to confirm their attendance,"
Verzzosi said.

"The Da Vinci Code" has sold more than 7.5 million
copies worldwide an is expected to be made into a movie.

(abstracted from CHICTRIB/WORLD
Associated Press by: Marta Falconi)
posted by infraternam meam @ 12:31 AM  
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Name: infraternam meam
Home: Chicago, United States
About Me: I am now at the prime of my life and have been married for the past 25 years. Sickly at times, but wants to see the elixir vita, so that I will be able to see my grandchildren from my two boys.
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