Did Raphael really look like this?

Researchers recreate 3D computerised reconstruction of Raphael's face.

Could this be what Raffaello Sanzio da Urbino - better known internationally as Raphael - actually looked like?

In the year of the 500th anniversary of the death of Raphael (1483-1520), a 3D reconstruction of the artist's face has been generated at the University of Rome Tor Vergata, in collaboration with the Vigamus Foundation and the Raffaello Academy of Urbino.

The 3D reconstruction, created by the university's Centre of Molecular Anthropology for Ancient DNA Studies, was based on a plaster cast taken of Raphael's skull in 1833 after the artist's remains at the Pantheon were exhumed for study.

Self-portraits by Raphael and paintings of him by other artists were also consulted in the 3D work, to create a "realistic facial reconstruction" which will be submitted shortly for publication in the Nature journal, reports Italian news agency Adnkronos.