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For two months in 1530, Michelangelo hid in a secret underground room beneath the Medici Chapels, "fill[ing] the walls with drawings" to forget his fears, as he later recalled. He had been commissioned by the Medicis, the most powerful family in Florence, to build the chapels—a mausoleum for members of the family—but had to hide out after backing a popular revolt against their rule.
"I hid in a tiny cell, entombed like the dead Medici above," he recalled after he was eventually pardoned by the Medicis and completed the chapels. The room went undiscovered until 1975—and now, for the first time, the public could be able to view it, the Telegraph reports. Some of the sketches he left on the walls resemble the Renaissance master's famous works, including parts of the Sistine Chapel, the Local reports. Other doodles may have been left behind by workers on the Medici Chapels project.
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