StMargaret of Cortona.Gaspare Traversi c1758.Met

Gaspare Traversi, c. 1758: St. Margaret of Cortona. She was a farmer’s daughter who ran away from home because of an evil stepmother – and into the arms of the lord of the manor, who eloped with her, got her pregnant and brought her back to the castle as his mistress. When he died, she and her son were turned out, so they went to stay with a sympathetic woman who found her a place with the Third Order Franciscans. She and her son spent the rest of their lives with them, she as a penitent and he as a monk; she started a hospital for unwed mothers and became their patron saint. (Metropolitan Museum, New York)

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