Born of peasant stock in Roccaorena, Italy, Rita desired to remain a virgin from her youth, but her parents insisted that she marry. The husband they chose proved to be a man of violent temper. Rita courageously abided his cruelty. Upon his death, she entered the Augustinian convent of Saint Mary Magdalene in Cascia, taking the veil in 1413. Rita gave herself over to prayer and mortification in reparation for the sufferings of Christ. She received a mystical wound in her forehead as though from a crown of thorns. Rita died of turberculosis in 1457.