Realism was in the beginning of the 12th century the dominant doctrine and the doctrine of the church; the Nominalists were the innovators and the especial representatives of the Rationalistic Summists.
Nevertheless Hugo, by the composition of his Summa sententiarum, endeavoured to give a methodical or rational presentation of the content of faith, and was thus the first of the so-called Summists.
Richard of St Victor, prior of the monastery from 1162 to 1173, is still more absorbed in mysticism, and his successor Walter loses his temper altogether in abuse of the dialecticians and the Summists alike.
The Summists have as much to say against the existence of God as for it, and the dialecticians, having gone to school to the pagans, have forgotten over Aristotle the way of salvation.
On the other hand, the Summists 1 occupied themselves merely in the systematizing of authorities.