Skip to main content

Margaret of Cortona, St.

MARGARET OF CORTONA, ST.

Franciscan tertiary, penitent; b. Laviano, 1247 (?); d. Cortona, Italy, Feb. 22, 1297. At the age of sixteen Margaret fled an unhappy family life to live for nine years as the mistress of a nobleman of Montepulciano. Upon his death, she returned to Cortona with her young son and put herself under the guidance of the Franciscans. Abandoning her son (who later became a Franciscan) to charity, she was allowed to join the Third Order of Penance of St. Francis in 1275. The major source for her life is the Legenda de vita et miraculis beatae Margaritae de Cortona written by her confessor, the friar Giunta of Bevegnati. It consists in ten chapters depicting the life and virtues of the saint, as well as one chapter dedicated to the miracles she performed while she was still alive and after her death. There is no doubt that the Legenda follows the typology of the classic hagiographical genre, which makes it difficult to sort out fact from fiction. It was meant to present Margaret as a "new Mary Magdalene" and provide a complete program of Christian living in particular for Franciscan lay women for whom she was set up as a model. She no doubt lived a harsh ascetical life and was gifted with exceptional mystical graces. She was also involved in peace-making activities and is credited with founding a hospital for the poor. Pope Benedict XIII canonized her on May 16, 1728. Her incorrupt body is venerated in her church at Cortona.

Feast: Feb. 22.

Bibliography: f. iozelli, ed., Legenda de vita et miraculis beatae Margaritae de Cortona (Grottaferrata 1997). t. renna, St. Margaret of Cortona intro. and trans. (St. Bonaventure, NY 2001). e. menestÒ, "La mistica di Margherita da Cortono," in Temi e problemi nella mistica feminile trecentesca (Todi 1983), 183206. r. rusconi, "Margherita da Cortona, Peccatrice redenta e patrona citadina," in Umbria sacra e civile (Turino 1989), 89104. j. cannon and a. vauchez, Margherita of Cortona and the Lorenzetti: Sienese Art and the Cult of a Holy Woman in Medieval Tuscany (Philadelphia 2000).

[p. lachance]

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Margaret of Cortona, St.." New Catholic Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. 19 Aug. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Margaret of Cortona, St.." New Catholic Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 19, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/margaret-cortona-st

"Margaret of Cortona, St.." New Catholic Encyclopedia. . Retrieved August 19, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/margaret-cortona-st

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.