Travel back
in time

Steeped in nearly 400 years of history, the entire site at Le Monastère des Augustines contributes to your museum experience.

Augustinian Sisters:
Healing Body and Soul

Permanent Exhibition

Tracing the evolution of the spiritual and social engagement of the Augustinian Sisters of Quebec through the ages, the permanent exhibition offers a unique glimpse into the past. Discover the community’s way of life, their work caring for the sick, and how they balanced their traditional vocations for action and contemplation.

Throughout the rooms, you will find selected objects from the 40,000 artifacts drawn from the Augustinian Sisters’ 12 monastery hospitals. They form a powerful composite picture that brings the exhibition’s themes to life and that offers a provocative commentary on society’s past, present and future.

Opening hours

From September 5th to December 22nd 2017

Tuesday to friday*
10am to 5pm
 
*The Museum of le Monastère des Augustines is open from 10am to 5pm on Thanksgiving, Easter Monday and Victoria Day.
 

Guided tours  (60 minutes)

From September 5th to December 22nd 2017

Tuesday to friday*
1:30pm
 
*A guided tour is offered in english à 1:30pm on Thanksgiving, Easter Monday and Victoria Day.
 
Please note that from tuesday to friday, the schedule of the guided tours can be changed without prior notice. 

Weekend
1:30pm

 

Admission

Unguided tour / Guided tour

  • General admission$10 / 15

  • Students and seniors$8 / 13

  • Children 12 to 16$4 / 9

  • Children up to 11Free

  • Family $22 / 30
  • (2 adults and 3 children max.)

including taxes

Other options

  • Group visits

    To book a group visit to the museum and to find out about our special rates.

    Contact us

  • Visits as part of a package

    All exclusive packages include admission to the museum as part of your stay.

    Explore our packages

Reliquary Bust of Jean de Brébeuf1664

Made in Paris by master goldsmith, Charles Poilly, this reliquary bust represents the Jesuit missionary and martyr, St. Jean de Brébeuf. The solid-silver bust sits atop the reliquary containing the right half of Brébeuf’s skull.

Collection: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery1/21

The Foundresses’ Mortar and Pestle17th century

The mortar and pestle were widely used by the Augustinian Sisters in the production of medicines. This brass instrument was reportedly brought from France by the three foundresses in 1639. In this case, the Mortar probably exhibits evidence of the fire that ravaged the Hôtel-Dieu de Québec in 1755.

Collection: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery2/21

Foundation Agreement for l’Hôtel-Dieu de Québec1637

The Duchess of Aiguillon, Cardinal Richelieu’s niece, secured 22 400 livres tournois in capital (a Tours pound was a pound of silver used as currency when Tours was the capital of France). The interest was to be used to support the Hôtel-Dieu monastery-hospital. According to the terms of the agreement, the sisters from Dieppe committed to daily prayer and to having their patients pray for the Duchess’ salvation.

Archives: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery3/21

Pharmaceutical jar18th century

This jar, one of a set of ceramic apothecary jars from Old Rouen, was given to the Augustinian Sisters in 1787 by the Jesuit, Reverend Father Louis-Augustin de Glapion, after England ordered that the Jesuits’ assets in the country be confiscated. Previously, the King’s pharmacy had been tended by the Jesuits. Apothecaries, doctors and common people went there to stock up on creams, ointments, syrups and other remedies.

Collection: Hôpital Général de Québec Monastery4/21

Concession Agreement from the Company of New France1637

The Company of New France grants 12 acres of land to the Augustinian Sisters of Quebec. It is on this land that the first buildings of l’Hôtel-Dieu de Québec are constructed.

Archives: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery5/21

Foundresses’ Trunk17th century

Marie Guenet de Saint-Ignace, Anne Le Cointre de Saint-Bernard and Marie Forestier de Saint-Bonaventure left Dieppe on May 4, 1639, carrying their valuables - including the contract for the founding of a hospital - in this trunk with three different locks. Each of the Sisters had in her possession one of the keys. The trunk - which was likely covered in skins to protect it from adverse weather conditions - probably also served as an altar during the crossing on board the Saint-Joseph.

Collection: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery6/21

Letters Patent Signed by Louis XIII1639

The King ratifies the intentions of the Duchess of Aiguillon, as well as the steps taken to found a hospital in New France. He authorizes the three sisters from Dieppe chosen for this mission to settle in Quebec, and charges them with managing l’Hôtel-Dieu de Québec.

Archives: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery7/21

Inhaler19th century

Made in London, England, in the latter part of the 19th century, this porcelain instrument was used to treat respiratory infections. Medicine was diluted in a bowl of hot water and the vapors were inhaled by the mouthpiece at the end of the tube.

Collection: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery8/21

Letters of Amortization signed by Louis XIV and his Minister of Finances, Colbert1680

In this document dated June 7, 1680, Louis XIV waives the amount that the Augustinian Sisters owe the crown for the land they possess.

Archives: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery9/21

Anesthesia mask1848

In 1848, at the request of one of the hospital’s surgeons, the Augustinian Sisters designed this model of handcrafted mask. Made of tin and linen, the instrument was used with chloroform anesthesia. It covered the patient’s mouth and nose.

Collection: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery10/21

Account of a trip to l’Île aux Oies1909

The Augustinian Sisters of l’Hôtel-Dieu de Québec acquired the Seigneurie de la grande île aux Oies from Paul Dupuy in 1713 in order to produce hay, wool and butter to meet the needs of the hospital and the monastery. In 1909, they write an account of a recent stay on the island to Father A. Faucher, chaplain of l’Hôtel-Dieu de Québec.

Archives: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery11/21

Bill for merchandise from France1755

The Augustinian Sisters maintain close ties with several suppliers in France. Pierre Guillemot, a merchant from La Rochelle, describes goods sent over in 1755 on the ship La Reine des Anges. Medicines and the products used in making them constitute a large part of the list.

Archives: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery12/21

Pill Dispenser19th century

When making pills, the apothecary nun would first mix the medicinal paste in the mortar. She would then spread it over the indentations in the copper portion of the pill dispenser. The upper portion would then be closed and the paste would be left for 12 to 24 hours. Once hardened, it would be in the shape of long tubes that were cut to the desired thickness. If a round pill was needed, the apothecary nun would roll it in the palm of her hand.

Collection: Hôpital Général de Québec Monastery13/21

Notes found with abandoned children1801-1845

In 1801, measures are adopted to prevent the abandonment of newborns and the Augustinian Sisters become agents of government policy. Notes pinned to babies’ diapers bear witness to parents’ distress and the hardships of life during the period. Of the 1375 children taken in by the sisters between 1801 and 1845, 736 died, 102 later returned to their families and 537 were adopted.

The archival holdings on abandoned children are classified heritage documents under Quebec’s Cultural Heritage Act.

Archives: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery14/21

Notes found with abandoned children1801-1845

In 1801, measures are adopted to prevent the abandonment of newborns and the Augustinian Sisters become agents of government policy. Notes pinned to babies’ diapers bear witness to parents’ distress and the hardships of life during the period. Of the 1375 children taken in by the sisters between 1801 and 1845, 736 died, 102 later returned to their families and 537 were adopted.

The archival holdings on abandoned children are classified heritage documents under Quebec’s Cultural Heritage Act.

Archives: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery15/21

Reliquary Cross18th and 19t centuries

In 1718, the Augustinian Sisters of the Hôpital Général de Québec are the first to wear reliquary crosses, a privilege that is granted to them by Bishop de St-Vallier. The cross, which contained a relic of a Saint, was given to a sister during the ceremony of profession of perpetual vows. The tradition was later adopted by other monasteries, including the one in Chicoutimi which was founded by nuns from the Hôpital Général de Québec. When the Augustinian Sisters modified their habit in 1967, they adopted a simple silver cross instead of a reliquary cross.

Collection: Hôtel-Dieu de Chicoutimi Monastery16/21

Donation of the Seigneury of Saint-Ignace by Robert Giffard1646

At the age of twelve, Marie-Françoise Giffard entres religious life at l’Hôtel-Dieu de Québec and takes the name Marie de Saint-Ignace. She is the first Canadian Augustinian Sister. By way of a dowry for his daughter, Robert Giffard gives the Seigneury of Saint-Ignace to the Order.

Archives: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery17/21

Furniture from Madame d’Ailleboust17th century

These pieces of furniture in Louis XIII style were given to the Augustinian Sisters by Marie Barbe de Boullongne, a resident at the Hôtel-Dieu de Québec monastery after the death of her husband, Louis d’Ailleboust, the third Governor of New France. Madame d’Ailleboust died at l’Hôtel-Dieu de Québec in 1685.

Collection: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery18/21

Register of women entering the Order, taking the habit and making vows1893-1994

This register, similar to those used in other monasteries, is a record of the names of all the women who entered the Order at the Hôtel-Dieu de Lévis monastery. As they became postulants, then novices, and eventually took their perpetual vows, all the important dates were added to the register.

Archives: Hôtel-Dieu de Lévis Monastery19/21

Mazarin Desk17th century

When Louis XIII dies in 1643 and Louis XIV is still a child, the Regent Queen Anne of Austria appoints Mazarin Prime Minister. This cherry wood desk dates from this period. It is considered to be the ancestor of the Executive Desk because the drawers do not extend down to the floor.

Collection: Hôtel-Dieu de Québec Monastery20/21

Vows of Mother Marie-Madeleine1923

This signed certificate of perpetual vows of Sister Germaine Lecours, also known as Sister Saint Mary Magdalene, a professed sister of l'Hôtel-Dieu de Lévis, is dated May 3, 1923. It confirms her vow to devote herself to serving the sick all the days of her life. Sister Lecours will later become the foundress and first Superior of l'Hôtel-Dieu de Montmagny.

Archives: Germaine Lecours, Hôtel-Dieu de Montmagny Monastery21/21

Cultural programs

Le Monastère offers cultural programs that enable you to explore the Augustinian Sisters’ heritage and the theme of holistic health through a variety of classes, workshops, lectures and concerts, all in an authentic and inspiring setting.

Next activity

No scheduled activities at the moment.

Programmation éducative

Notre programmation éducative découle de la volonté des Augustines de rendre leur héritage accessible aux générations futures. Elle offre à des clientèles étudiantes de tous les niveaux de prendre contact avec une partie importante de notre histoire et de nos traditions.

Primaire et secondaire

À travers la visite du Monastère et des expositions, les élèves découvrent le patrimoine des Augustines et leur rôle dans l’évolution des soins de santé au Québec.

Activité d’une durée maximale de 90 minutes (selon l’âge), qui comprend :

  • la visite guidée du Musée;
  • un atelier sur la pratique du métier d’apothicaire.

CEGEP and university

Une visite commentée du Monastère d’une durée maximale de 90 minutes en lien avec les contenus de divers programmes d’études :

  • sciences infirmières, médecine ou pharmacie;
  • archéologie, architecture ou ébénisterie;
  • ethnologie, histoire de l’art, muséologie ou sciences religieuses.