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Hildegaard of Bingen (1098-1179)

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Christian mystic, author, counselor, scientist, philosopher, visionary…these are just of a few of the roles Blessed Hildegaard of Bingen embraced in her lifetime. Also known as Saint Hildegaard, her fellow nuns elected her a magistra in 1136. She founded the monasteries of Rupertsberg in 1150 and Eibingen in 1165. Hildegaard was one of the first persons for whom the canonization process was officially applied.

Hildegaard was likely born in 1098 into a family of free nobles. She noted that from a very young age she experienced visions. Because of this, it’s believed her parents offered her as a tithe to the church.

She wrote theological, botanical and medicinal texts, as well as letters, songs, poems and the first surviving morality play Ordo Virtutum. There is particular interest in Hildegaard’s music. Between 70 to 80 compositions of hers have survived, one the largest repertoires among medieval composers. She also wrote three books of visions.





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