UCL News


Novel claims painter portrayed founder of Church as a traitor

5 February 2006

A new novel, based "90 per cent on historical facts", depicts Leonardo Da Vinci as a heretic who painted his own face into The Last Supper, and claims that the painting portrays Saint Peter as a traitor and carries a blasphemous message.

'The Secret Supper', which has sold more than 500,000 copies in Europe, is set to rival 'The Da Vinci Code' for conspiracy theories about one of the most famous figures in art history. …

Javier Sierra, the novel's Spanish author, claims that most his characters and events are based on historical records. "The book is fiction but 90 per cent of the facts are real," he said. …

'The Secret Supper' has sparked controversy among academics. Professor David d'Avray [UCL History] said that Sierra's claims were "as likely to appeal to professional historians as much as flat-earthers' arguments appeal to professional geographers".

Roya Nikkhah, 'Daily Telegraph', 5 February 2006