Santa Maria Egiziaca a Forcella

Naples, Italy

Santa Maria Egiziaca a Forcella

Santa Maria Egiziaca a Forcella (or church of Santa Maria Egiziaca all'Olmo) is a Baroque-style, Roman Catholic church located in the quartiere di Forcella, in the city of Naples, Italy;

The church was founded in 1342 under the patronage of Queen Sancha of Aragon. The queen and her husband were very devout; and Sancha herself entered a monastery of the Poor Clares after her husband's death. The church and attached buildings served as a Madgalen asylum, meant to shelter donne di mondo convertite (prostitutes). The titular saint, Mary of Egypt, had history of repenting a life of lust and prostitution, and converting herself into a saintly hermit. The function of the convent as a home for fallen women was later pursued mostly by Santa Maria Maddalena, and this church became attached to a small nunnery for aristocratic women.



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