Hugh of Saint-Victor< Back to author list
Of noble birth, Hugh joined the Augustinian canons at the monastery of Hamersleben, near Halberstadt (now in Germany). He went to Paris (c. 1115) with his uncle, Archdeacon Reinhard of Halberstadt, and settled at Saint-Victor Abbey. From 1133 until his death, the school of Saint-Victor flourished under Hugh’s guidance.
His mystical treatises were strongly influenced by Bishop St. Augustine of Hippo, whose practical teachings on contemplative life Hugh blended with the theoretical writings of Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite. Hugh’s somewhat innovative style of exegesis made an important contribution to the development of natural theology: he based his arguments for God’s existence on external and internal experience and added a teleological proof originating from the facts of experience.