Mary Magdalene in Provence

A free lesson of Latin literature in Latin

Friday, December 22, 2023, at 17:00 CET

Mary Magdalene is one of the most prominent figures in Christian iconography, both alone and in connection with key moments in the life of Jesus. However, her identity has evolved over time through the merging of various female characters mentioned in the Gospels. Medieval hagiography then attributed preaching and miracles to her in Gaul, where her relics are said to be preserved. The crystallization of her character was achieved through the Legenda aurea by Jacopo da Varagine (1230-1298), a Dominican friar and bishop of Genoa: a true best-seller in the Middle Ages and also in the modern era.

In this lesson we shall follow Magdalene’s legendary deeds in Provence, through passages from Jacopo’s hagiography and several works of art which are testament to her long-lasting veneration.

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lesson by

Luisa Bagiotti


introduction by

Giuseppe Marcellino