Venetian nunneries were once hotbeds of passion.
Historians have established that Venetian nunneries were the most liberated in Europe.
In the 1400s, the skyrocketing cost of dowries meant that many of the city’s noblest families were obliged to place their teenage daughters, regardless of their wishes, in convents. Few of these developed a spiritual calling.
It was openly accepted that the top convents were a “safety valve” for Venice’s surplus of well-born single women, who could go on to enjoy a level of sexual freedom unique for the time.