Siria's Reviews > Life and Death in a Venetian Convent: The Chronicle and Necrology of Corpus Domini, 1395-1436

Life and Death in a Venetian Convent by Bartolomea Riccoboni
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's review
Oct 15, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: history, italian-history, nonfiction, religious-history, womens-history
Read from October 15 to 29, 2011

This is a really fascinating example of a convent chronicle and necrology—a record kept by a Venetian nun, living at the end of the 14th/beginning of the 15th centuries, of her community's history and the pious deaths of the nuns who lived there. Not only does this show us medieval female religious documenting their own history and actively involved in shaping their own identity, we also see them interested and engaged in both ecclesiastical and secular politics. Sister Bartolomea tells us frustratingly little about her background, and I would love to have seen more about the day-to-day life of the convent, but what we do get is wonderful—an elderly sister, hobbling along to choir with the use of a cane; another sister preparing medicinal syrups for the others to drink. Bornstein's translation is clear and accessible, and makes this a wonderful source to use, particularly in an undergrad class.
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