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By Culturekiosque Staff

LONDON, 15 OCTOBER 2005 — Two previously unseen paintings by Leonardo da Vinci are on view until 8 January 2006 at the Mole Vanvitelliana museum in Ancona, Italy, the BBC reported. Virgin of the Rocks, found in a private Swiss collection three years ago, depicts Mary sitting in a grotto with Jesus, Saint John and the archangel, Uriel. Two other versions of the painting are at the Louvre in Paris and in London's National Gallery.

The other recently discovered painting, a semi-nude portrait of Mary Magdalene holding a veil over her bare breasts, on a wooden panel, is  thought to have been completed by Leonardo da Vinci with the help of one of his pupils, Giampetrino, in about 1515, shortly before his death, the BBC said. It has been in a private collection in Switzerland and unseen by the public for the past 50 years.

Founded by Greeks from Syracuse in the 4th century B.C, Ancona is a port city of central Italy on the Adriatic Sea.

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