SAINT ELIZABETH OF HUNGARY
St. Elizabeth of Hungary (1207 – 1231)
Patron services, tertiaries, widows, and young brides
Hand carved statue made in 1855 polychrome
Polychrome is the "'practice of decorating architectural elements, sculpture, etc., in a variety of colors. The term is used to refer to certain styles of architecture, pottery or sculpture in multiple colors.
To be betrothed at age four and sent to the country of your future spouse was not unusual for royalty of Elizabeth of Hungary’s time. What was unusual is that it was a happy and holy alliance. By the time Elizabeth’s marriage was solemnized her spouse adored her. He supported her generosity to the poor, although others in his family objected. A famous story about this clash tells how she was stopped by one of her in-laws while carrying loaves for the poor in her cloak. When ordered to show what she was carrying, Elizabeth let the cloak fall, dropping a cascade of roses.
Her husband was able to block the spite shown to his queen up until his death on the First Crusade. Without her protector, Elizabeth’s mean-spirited brother-in-law – the acting regent for her son -- drove her and the children from the palace. From that point she rearranged her life to be closer to her beloved poor, taking vows as a Third Order Franciscan, and worked devotedly in the care of the sick.