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Biography of St. Bernard


Index

Bernard, St. Born in 1091 of noble Burgundian birth. Was educated at Paris University. He entered the Cistercian monastery at Citeaux, and there acquired a high reputation as a preacher. At the head of a band of monks, he was sent to found a new monastery, which he established at Clairvaux, and from which his fame and influence spread far and wide. Kings, popes, and nobles all appealed to him for advice on the weightiest matters, and accepted his decisions. He procured the condemnation of several heterodox writers, including Abelard and Arnold of Brescia. His great work was the preaching of a new crusade in France and Germany. He excited the greatest enthusiasm, and prophesied the triumph of the expedition. But it failed notably, and Bernard died soon afterwards in1153. He was canonized in 1174, and bears the title of "The Last of the Fathers."