The journey of Mary Magdalene
Texts by: Anna Maria Parlato historian and art critic
Emblem of a seductive and corrupting femininity, as the guilty heir of Eve, Mary Magdalene had to redeem herself as a woman and, according to medieval legends, atone for her guilt in the desert.
The hermit's life made her ugly but chaste, covered only by her own blanket of hair that recalled the innocence of Eve still a virgin in lost Eden, so much so that she became a source of inspiration for Donatello's wooden sculpture. Metaphor of the complexity of the female universe, she was goddess, sinner and saint in a single archetype: Mary of Bethany, sister of Lazarus and Martha, Mary of Magdala, the one whom the evangelist Luke defines as tormented by seven demons and who was the announcer of the Resurrection, the anonymous sinner, who wept at the feet of Christ in the house of the Pharisee Simon.
Categories: Middle Ages