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Saint Nicholas and the gift of the three girls - Accademia cittadella Nicolaiana

Saint Nicholas and the gift of the three girls

Saint Nicholas and the gift of the three girls

The gift to the three poor girls is perhaps one of the most famous episodes in the life of St. Nicholas, so much so as to be mentioned by Thomas Aquinas and Dante Alighieri.

According to tradition, the young Saint Nicholas had heard of the sad story of a neighbor of his with three young daughters of ripe age. The man, who had suddenly fallen into misery, had decided to make these girls work as prostitutes. The providential intervention of St. Nicholas avoided upsetting the lives of the girls forever. At night, to hide his gesture of charity, he threw a bag of gold coins three times through the window of the man’s house. One for each girl. Three important sums that allowed the weddings of the young girls.

The episode, destined to have an enormous impact on the imagination of the following centuries, is well linked to the subsequent public activity of the Saint: a Bishop, defender of the afflicted and father of the poor.

Continue reading, read more about the episode “The rescue of three innocents from beheading”.