Margherita Colonna

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Blessed Margherita Colonna
Born 1255
Palestrina, Papal States
Died 30 September 1280 (aged 25)
Castel San Pietro, Rome, Papal States
Venerated in Roman Catholic Church
Beatified 17 September 1847, Saint Peter's Basilica, Papal States by Pope Pius IX
Feast 30 December
Attributes Poor Clares habit

Blessed Margherita Colonna, O.S.C., (1255 – 30 September 1284[1] ) was an Italian Roman Catholic Poor Clare nun and abbess. She was a member of the Italian Colonna family, which was notable in Italian history for centuries.

She was beatified by Pope Pius IX after the approval of her cult in 1847.


She was born in Palestrina about 1255. Her father, Oddone Colonna, died when she was about two years old. Her mother, who was also named Margherita and who was the sister of Matteo Rosso Orsini and a pious woman, died when Margherita was probably a little over ten years old.[2] Margherita was left in the care of her older brothers.[1]

The elder, Giovanni Colonna, was repeatedly a Roman senator. A "life" composed about Margaret, is thought to have been written by him. The younger, Giacomo, was raised to the cardinalate in 1278 by Pope Nicholas III, an Orsini cousin. Cardinal Colonna was the lifelong friend and confidant of the pope, Honorius IV, and a leading figure of the curia.[3]

In Margaret's late teens there was talk of an appropriate marriage for her, but it was not forced. She refused the proposal of the chief magistrate of Rome. According to her brother's "life," Margaret had always lived in peculiarly sweet piety. She had long wanted to retire from the world.

She retired to a lonely retreat near Palestrina where she passed her time in practices of piety and penance. Her charity towards the poor was said to be unbounded, and she was thought to have worked miracles.[1]

Through the influence of her brother, the cardinal, Margaret obtained the canonical erection of a community of Urbanist Poor Clares at Palestrina, of which she most probably became abbess. Seven years before her death, she was afflicted with an ulcer, from which she suffered until her death.[4] She died on September 30, 1280.[1]

Margherita was, after her death, considered a saint by the people in the areas of Colonna power, in the stretch of territory from Subiaco to Palestrina and from Palestrina to Anagni. She was very much a family saint; and her sanctity had flowered, in life, on Colonna hills.[2]


  1. ^ a b c d "CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: Blessed Margaret Colonna". 1910-10-01. Retrieved 2015-09-21. 
  2. ^ a b "Rome Before Avignon "d0e3714"". Retrieved 2015-09-21. 
  3. ^ Philip Hughes. "A History Of The Church". Retrieved 2015-09-21. 
  4. ^ Marion Habig, OFM. "Franciscan Book of Saints". Retrieved 2016-12-24. 

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