Original model for Michelangelo's Pieta 'discovered'

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An American art historian claims to have discovered the original model created by Michelangelo for one of his greatest works – the 'Pieta' statue in St Peter's Basilica in the Vatican.

The terracotta model, which is about 12 inches tall and dates from the late 1400s, was found in a mouldy box in an antiques shop by an Italian art collector.

After subjecting it to extensive analysis, Roy Doliner believes it is the long-lost model for Michelangelo's Pieta, the huge marble statue which depicts the Virgin Mary cradling the lifeless body of Christ.

Mr Doliner will unveil the discovery at a press conference in Rome on Thursday, when the model will be returned to the Italian capital for the first time in centuries....

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