The Sibyl of the Rhine

September 17th marks the anniversary of the death of Hildegard of Bingen, a 12th century German author and abbess. Born to a noble family in Bermersheim, Germany in 1098, she was sent at a young age to live with the nuns at the monastery of Disibodenberg, where she learned how to read and write. She eventually became the abbess and moved the nuns to a new abbey she named Rupertsburg on the Rhine River. Hildegard was a prolific author, writing on natural philosophy and theology and corresponding with kings, queens, emperors, and popes. She was also an accomplished composer, writing hymns and instrumental works.  For her mystical visions and her wisdom she became known as the Sibyl of the Rhine.  After fading in obscurity for hundreds of years, scholars rediscovered her works and accomplishments in the later 20th century.  Her musical works have been recorded by several artists, and her life story inspired a critically acclaimed biopic.  A leading light in her own age, Hildegard continues to inspire people in our times.

Hildegard of Bingen

St. Hildegard of Bingen, Doctor of the Church


Canticles of ecstasy