1098-1179
 

Also known as Saint Hildegard and Sibyl of the Rhine, Hildegard von Bingen was a German writer, composer, philosopher, Christian mystic, Benedictine abbess, visionary, and polymath. Elected a magistra by her fellow nuns in 1136, she founded the monasteries of Rupertsberg in 1150 and Eibingen in 1165. One of her works as a composer, the Ordo Virtutum, is an early example of liturgical drama and arguably the oldest surviving morality play.

She wrote theological, botanical and medicinal texts, as well as letters, liturgical songs, and poems, while supervising miniature illuminations in the Rupertsberg manuscript of her first work, Scivias.

And yes, St. Hildegard might have even had a queer side. She had a close relationship with a fellow nun, Richardis von Stade, which some scholars believe may have been romantic in nature. When Richardis was appointed abbess elsewhere, Hildegard wrote letters urging that the decision be reversed, to no avail, only for Richardis to die shortly after her departure. Some believe the “anima” in Ordo Virtutum may represent Richardis, and her dying request (to her brother) is to return to Hildegard, like how the repentant anima returns to God in the morality play. Some scholars also attest to a pattern of focus on the female body and female desire throughout Hildegard’s music. [link]

Hildegard von Bingen