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The first monumental complex, consisting of a hospital and a church, seems to have been erected in the 8th century while the current building, connected with the adjacent female monastery, which does not exist today, was founded in 1291.

In 1432 the bishop of Torcello, Filippo Paruta, united the monastery and the income of San Nicolò della Cavana (island close to Mazzorbo) and Santa Maria Maddalena of the Gaiata island (north-east of Torcello) to Santa Caterina, the 'one inhabited by Benedictines since 1303, the other belonging to the regular Canons.

The church belonged to the Benedictine nuns who lived in the adjoining convent and who, in 1696, counted 40 nuns. As a result of the decree of 28 July 1806, the monastery was subsequently almost entirely demolished and the nuns transferred to San Giovanni Evangelista di Torcello, in execution of the decree of the Italian Kingdom of 8 June 1805; the church was saved and became a parish.

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