Maria del Sochorso,
How it Works
The Maria del Soccorso is derived from a Byzantine icon type called “the Virgin of Passion.” The Baroque artist borrowed the composition of the Virgin and Child from a famous icon in Rome in the church of San Matteo in Merulana, which was a miracle-working image. When artists copied famous miracle-working images, they were not just making a replica, but, according to religious beliefs at the time, transposing some of its special miraculous powers. The style suggests it was painted in Northern Italy, where there are around thirty Madonna del Soccorso shrines in cities, towns and rural villages. Many shrines were created under the leadership of the Hermit Augustinian Order of friars. The frequency of plagues, famine, warfare, and epidemics of all kinds in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries caused people to appeal to the Virgin for help.
Question: Tell me more about the miracle-working Madonna del Perpetua Soccorso icon in Rome?
Question: When and what was the plague (or “Black Death”) in Italy?
Question: What kind of popular festivals were staged for the Madonna del Soccorso and do they still take place?