St. Hubert, patron of the hunt and some liqueurs

November 4, 2013

St Hubert

As the pleasure-loving firstborn son of the Duke of Aquitaine, Hubert loved the chase. Little did he realize though, that God would use his favorite pastime to bring about his spiritual conversion. He was hot in the pursuit of a noble stag when, upon reaching a forest clearing, it turned and faced him. Suspended in the air between the antlers, a dumbfounded Hubert could see a crucifix, and from the Crucified One came a voice not unlike that which had stunned Saul on the road to Damascus centuries before: “Hubert, unless you turn to the Lord, and lead a holy life, you shall quickly go down into hell!”


Hubert dismounted and threw himself on the bare ground. Prostrated before that Voice that had calmed the waves and silenced the storming winds, he said: “Lord, what would you have me do?”

“Go and seek Lambert; he will instruct you,” came the divine reply.


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Now Lambert was the bishop of Maastricht.

With Hubert’s change of heart, came a change in life. No longer would he chase deer, but rather, like a new Apostle, he would go after men, laboring to bring them to Heaven. He succeeded Lambert as bishop of Maastricht and then became bishop of Liège. He spread the faith among the pagans of his region and is known as “the Apostle of the Ardennes.”

The story of his conversion having endeared him to hunters everywhere, he was made their patron saint.

St. Hubertus 33 liqueur. Photo by Andrew69

St. Hubertus 33 liqueur. Photo by Andrew69

St. Hubert is also the inspiration for the traditional Hungarian herbal digestif called St. Hubertus and the German Jägermeister (which means “master of the hunt”). Both liqueurs show the suspended crucifix between a stag’s antlers.



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