Saint Agnes of Assisi

detail of a stained glass window of Saint Agnes of Assisi, date and artist unknown; church of San Domenico, Siena, Italy; photographed on 21 September 2016 by José Luiz Bernardes Ribeiro; swiped from Wikimedia CommonsMemorial


Daughter of Count Favorino Scifi and Blessed Hortulana, she was raised in a series of castles in and around Assisi, Italy. Younger sister of Saint Clare of Assisi, and her first follower, leaving home two weeks after Clare to join the Benedictines at San Angelo di Panzo at age fifteen. The family tried to bring Agnes back by force, dragging her from the monastery, but her body became so heavy that several knights could not budge her. Her uncle Monaldo tried to beat her, but was temporarily paralyzed. The family then left Agnes and Clare in peace.

In 1221 a group of Benedictine nuns in Monticelli asked to become Poor Clares, and Saint Francis assigned Agnes as their abbess. Agnes wrote about how much she missed Clare and the other nuns at San Damiano, and after establishing other Poor Clare monasteries in northern Italy, Agnes was recalled in 1253 when Clare was dying. Agnes followed Clare in death three months later.






MLA Citation

  • “Saint Agnes of Assisi“. CatholicSaints.Info. 12 August 2020. Web. 27 January 2022. <>