chapter  5
28 Pages

Sister Arcangela Tarabotti: Hair, Wigs and other Vices

Many artists and writers contributed to the formation of the myth of Venice, a city always represented as a beautiful woman, an ideal city, miracle and theatre of the world, as we have seen in both Vecellio and Franco.2 This, though, was far from being an uncontested myth, at least, not in sixteenthand seventeenth-century Venetian women’s circles. Both Modesta Pozza (1555-1592), a Venetian writer who went under the pseudonym of Moderata Fonte, and author of The Worth of Women, published posthumously in 1600; and Arcangela Tarabotti (1604-1652), a Venetian nun and author of works such as La tirannia paterna (Paternal tyranny), L’inferno monacale (The monastic hell), Il paradiso monacale (The monastic paradise) and Antisatira take strong issue with the narrative that had branded Venice as the Serenissima.