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Hildegard: Ave Generosa

Here’s a hint: She was a rock star in medieval Germany!

Hildegard of Bingen is one of history’s earliest-known female composers. Hildegard began having sacred visions and giving prophecies at a very young age, leading her parents to send her off to a life as a nun. She eventually worked her way up to becoming an abbess and founded several abbeys in medieval Germany. In addition to her multi-faceted life as an abbess, herbalist, poet, visionary, and linguist, Hildegard is best known for her compositions of liturgical music. She is also credited as the inventor of her own alternative alphabet. The texts of her compositions and other writings show evidence of her use of a modified form of Latin, which she used probably to increase solidarity among her nuns. This particular work, Ave generosa, is a hymn devoted to the Virgin Mary.

Music Heard On This Episode

Hildegard von Bingen (1098-1179): Ave generosa
Jeremy Summerly/Oxford Camerata — Hildegard von Bingen: Heavenly Revelations (Naxos, 1995)
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album cover
Hildegard von Bingen (1098-1179): Ave generosa
Jeremy Summerly/Oxford Camerata — Hildegard von Bingen: Heavenly Revelations (Naxos, 1995)
Buy from Amazon »
album cover

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