Book of Saints – Hilary of Poitiers

Article

(Hilarius) (Saint) Bishop (January 13) Doctor of the Church. (4th century) One of the most famous of the defenders of the Catholic Faith against the Arian heresy, with which during the fourth century the East, and more particularly the Imperial Court of Constantinople was infected. Born of noble though heathen parents at Poitiers, Saint Hilary studied Rhetoric and Philosophy, gradually coming to a knowledge of Christianity. In A.D. 353, elected Bishop of Poitiers, he separated from his wife and devoted himself to his flock. The Arian Emperor Constantius, taking umbrage at his powerful defense of orthodoxy, banished him to Phrygia in Asia Minor, where he wrote his famous Treatise on the Trinity, and continued to combat Arianism with so much success that to get rid of him the authorities suffered him to return to his Diocese in the fifth year of his exile. At Poitiers, in a Synod he held there, and afterwards at Milan, where an Arian had been intruded as Bishop, he went on battling with heresy. To the intense grief of his people, he was taken from them by death, January 13, A.D. 368 or 369. His Feast is kept on the following day and, by command of Pope Pius IX, as that of a Doctor of the Church.

MLA Citation

  • Monks of Ramsgate. “Hilary of Poitiers”. Book of Saints, 1921. Saints.SQPN.com. 3 September 2013. Web. 30 September 2014. <>