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Tra chiostro e secolo: le benedettine di S. Maria delle Vergini nella Palermo medievale


In the fourteenth century Preziosa Abbate, widow of Garsiolo de Yvar from Navarre, founded the benedectine convent of S. Maria delle Vergini, in the Cassaro quarter. Since its foundation, it was linked to important and prestigious families of Palermo, was supported by the kings of Sicily and received movable and immovable property, money, and precious objects by lay people of different social classes. In the fifteenth century the number of nuns grew, so maintenance costs increased and the monastery was enlarged, by buying new buildings. The relationship with the secular world was always very strong because the nuns kept close ties with their families; in the convent, besides the nuns, there were girls destined for marriage, widows and slaves.