26th july: Saint Ann and Saint Joachim

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Anna (Sefforis, 1st century BC – 1st century AD …) is considered by Christian tradition to be Joachim’s wife and the mother of the Virgin Mary and is revered as a saint
Mary’s (and Elizabeth’s) parents are never mentioned in canonical biblical texts; their story was narrated for the first time in the apocryphal Proto-Gospel of James and Gospel of the pseudo-Matthew, and then enriched with hagiographic details over the centuries, up to the Golden Legend of Jacopo da Varagine.

The feast in the Catholic Church occurs on July 26, while the Novena of Sant’Anna is recited on July 17.

Many Eastern saints preached about St. Anne, such as, for example, St. John Damascene, St. Epiphanius of Salamis, St. Sophronius of Jerusalem.

The vicissitudes of the saint were then collected in the De Laudibus Sanctissime Matris Annae tractatus of 1494.

Pope Gregory XIII (1584) extended the feast to the whole Catholic Church.

The episodes of the story of Anna and Gioacchino are often represented in the depictions of the Vita Christi; Giotto’s from 1305 in the Scrovegni Chapel in Padua are famous. Starting from the early Middle Ages, the iconography of St. Anna mettza (with Mary and the Child Jesus) spread, also taken up by Masaccio and Leonardo.

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