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This article is about the disciple of Jesus. For other uses, see Mary Magdalene (disambiguation).
Mary Magdalene at the foot of the Cross, mourning for the dead Christ
East: Myrrhbearer and Equal of the Apostles
Born early 1st century AD
Died mid to late 1st century AD
Ephesus, Asia Minor or Marseilles1
Venerated in Eastern Orthodoxy
Roman Catholic Church
other Protestant churches
Feast July 22
Western: alabaster box of ointment, long hair, at the foot of the cross2
Eastern: container of ointment (as a myrrhbearer), or holding a red egg (symbol of the resurrection); embracing the feet of Christ after the Resurrection
Patronage apothecaries; Atrani, Italy; Casamicciola Terme, Ischia; contemplative life; converts; glove makers; hairdressers; penitent sinners; people ridiculed for their piety; perfumeries; pharmacists; reformed prostitutes; sexual temptation; tanners; women2
Mary Magdalene or Mary of Magdala (original Greek Μαρία ἡ Μαγδαληνή,3 flourished 1st century AD) was one of Jesus’ most celebrated disciples.4 She is famous because she was the first person to see Jesus after he rose from the dead,4 according to John 20 and Mark 16:9, part of the so-called “Longer Ending” to that chapter.
The late 20th and early 21st century has seen a restoration of the New Testament figure of Mary Magdalene as a patron of women’s preaching and ministry. Her new popularity has stemmed in part from the recognition that Mary Magdalene has suffered from what is believed to have been a historical defamation of character. Some argue[who?] that she has been misidentified as a repentant prostitute in historical tradition and as depicted in art as a weeping sinner wiping Jesus’ feet with her hair.5