(formerly also spelled Loretto). Town near Ancona, It., with RC shrine of the Holy House (Santa Casa), in which, acc. to legend, Mary lived at the time of the Annunciation*; the house is said to have been carried by angels from Nazareth first to Dalmatia 1291, then to It. 1294, where it was miraculously relocated twice 1295. The name Loreto is said to be derived either (1) from Laureto, the woman who owned the wooded spot near Recanati, where the house was brought from Dalmatia; or (2) from the woods (Lat. lauretum) itself.
Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
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