Nostradamus, a “visionary” who was an initiate?
(December 14, 1503 – July 2, 1566) was born Michel de Nostredame.
He is remembered for his book “Les Propheties”, which consists
of one unrhymed and 941 rhymed quatrains, grouped into nine sets of 100
and one of 42, called 'Centuries'. It is believed that there should have
been 1000 verses, but some mystery remains as to what happened to the then
“missing” 58 quatrains.
Born in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, little is known about Nostredame's childhood. It is known, however, that he entered the University of Avignon at the age of fifteen. In 1529, after some years as an apothecary, he entered the University of Montpellier to study for a doctorate in medicine. He was promptly expelled when it was discovered that he had been an apothecary, which was a “manual” trade expressly banned by the university statutes. Despite these red tape restrictions, he was invited by Jules-César Scaliger, a leading Renaissance scholar, to come to Agen in 1531. There, Nostredame married a woman whose name is still in dispute (possibly Henriette d'Encausse), who bore him two children. In 1534, his wife and children died, presumably from the plague. After their death, he continued to travel, passing through France and possibly Italy, to marry again in 1547, taking a rich widow named Anne Ponsarde as his wife. She bore him six children: three daughters (Madeleine, Anne and Diane) and three sons (César, Charles and André).
The link between the mystery of Rennes-le-Château and Nostradamus is only explored by those who quite often merely want to make spurious links. But there is some “hard evidence” too, which is less mentioned. What is mentioned is that on the marketsquare of Alet-les-Bains, there is an old house, believed to have been owned by Jews. Some stories allege that this Jewish family was related to Nostradamus and that the man himself at some point in his life came to visit. But this remains speculation. The best evidence is that Pierre Plantard had a special devotion for Nostradamus, seeing he often used the pseudonym Cheyren. An unpublished manuscript, “Le fabuleux Trésor de Razès” was signed Louis Chyren. Chyren is listed in Nostradamus’ quatrains twice:
of the world will the great "Chyren" be,
Plus Ultra behind, loved, feared, dreaded:
His fame and praise will go beyond the heavens,
And with the sole title of Victor will he be quite satisfied. (Quatrain 6,70)
great "Chyren" will seize Avignon,
From Rome letters in honey full of bitterness:
Letter and embassy to leave from "Chanignon,"
Carpentras taken by a black duke with a red feather. (Quatrain 9,41)
We therefore see how Chyren will be the leader of the world, as well seizing Avignon. It is often said that Plantard saw himself – or was he promoted by others as such too? – as the new leader of France – which his sceptics see as evidence of his wild dreams, of which the Priory was one. But what neither report, is that Plantard seems to have become inspired, and/or used, Nostradamus’ prophecies to carve out a potential future for himself.
Let it therefore be known that the “great Chyren”, according to Nostradamus, will bring peace to the world, but only after he has conducted a global reign of terror to expunge his enemies and all rebels.
quatrains, published in a book titled Les Propheties ('The Prophecies'),
received a mixed reaction when they were published. Some people thought
Nostradamus was a servant of evil, a fake, or insane, while many of the
elite thought his quatrains were spiritually inspired prophecies. Catherine
de Médici, the queen consort of King Henry II of France, was one
of Nostradamus' greatest admirers.
Recent research by Brind'Amour, Prévost, Gruber and Lemesurier has suggested that most of his prophetic work was in fact based on paraphrasing collections of ancient end-of-the-world prophecies (mainly Bible-based) and supplementing their insights by projecting known historical events and identifiable anthologies of omen-reports into the future with the aid of comparative horoscopy. It is thanks to this that his work contains so many predictions involving ancient figures such as Sulla, Marius, Nero, Hannibal and so on, as well as descriptions of "battles in the clouds" and "frogs falling from the sky".
His historical sources include passages from Livy, Suetonius, Plutarch and a range of other classical historians, as well as from the chronicles of medieval authors such as Villehardouin and Froissart. Many of his broader astrological references are taken almost word-for-word from Richard Roussat’s “Livre de l'estat et mutations des temps”, published in 1549/50.
His major prophetic source was the “Mirabilis liber” of 1522, which contained a range of prophecies by Pseudo-Methodius, the Tiburtine Sibyl, Joachim of Fiore, Savonarola and others (his Preface contains no fewer than 24 biblical quotations, all but two of them in exactly the same order as Savonarola). Though this makes it clear that he was not the unique visionary he is now considered to be, in his time, Nostradamus was, in effect, one of the first to present his prophecies (and others) openly in the French vernacular – and this singular fact largely explains his popularity in France.
The Copying Prophet
it may seem that Nostradamus merely copied other works, he was “up
to date” with his research and included less or little known material
in his writings. Material was gleaned from the “De honesta disciplina”
of 1504 by Petrus Crinitus, which included extracts from Psellus's “De
daemonibus” and the “De Mysteriis Aegyptiorum...” (Concerning
the mysteries of Egypt...), a book on Chaldean and Assyrian magic by Iamblichus,
a 4th century neo-Platonist. Latin versions of both had recently been published
in Lyon, and extracts from both are paraphrased (in the second case almost
literally) in his first two verses.
It is therefore clear that Nostradamus was not a prophet, though he did copy other people’s prophecies, making them “his own”, though largely merely translating them for the everyday Frenchman of the 16th century. Did he merely do this to make a living? Or was there another reason behind his enterprise?
Amongst the 1000-odd quatrains, it may seem strange to stumble upon a quatrain that talks about the region of Perillos, yet it is there: verse 8,22:
Coursan, Narbonne through the salt to warn
Tuchan, the grace of Perpignan betrayed;
the red town will not wish to consent to it,
in a high flight, a copy flag and a life ended.
won’t try to explain these quatrains and though we could say how this
“high flight” could somehow be related to the crash of the Constellation
that occurred in Perillos in 1963, let us remain with our feet far from
a basin of water, and our hands off any tripod. Instead, let us place the
quatrain into context: in the previous verse, there is mention of coming
ashore in the port of Agde, and by 8,26, the story has left Perpignan and
passed into Spain, with Barcelona and Pamplona being mentioned.
It is clear that Nostradamus is describing a voyage, from the port of Agde, near Béziers, going further south to Narbonne, and then to Tuchan, and from there to Perpignan.
Tuchan is in the immediate vicinity of Perillos and depending on what route we are meant to take, the voyage from Narbonne to Tuchan can take us via or just past Perillos. For the moment, let us merely state that the landscape of part of the Centuries involves the region of Perillos.
666, or 6,66 ?
the foundation of the new sect,
The bones of the great Roman will be found,
A sepulchre covered by marble will appear,
Earth to quake in April poorly buried. (Quatrain 6,66)
is one of the most famous quatrains of Nostradamus, if only because of its
number: 6,66. Much has been made about the verse and its number, which is,
of course, the number of the biblical beast. For sure, in a series of quatrains
that numbers a thousand, there will be one that is known as 666. But it
seems that Nostradamus did impart specific meaning in this verse, as it
is not only more comprehensible than most, but is also more intriguing than
We will note that the postcode of Opoul-Perillos is 66600 and that Perillos is famous for a “sepulchre” – the “tomb of Christ” identified on Saunière’s model. We are definitely not suggesting that Nostradamus foresaw the French postal code system, but perhaps someone devising that system did know his Nostradamus… and certain aspects of France’s secret history?
But there is more: of specific interest is the reference to the “bones of the Great Roman”. The “Great Roman” also makes another appearance in 3, 65:
the sepulchre of the great Roman is found,
The day after a Pontiff will be elected:
Scarcely will he be approved by the Senate
Poisoned, his blood in the sacred chalice.
First: 3, 65 or 365, as the numbers of days in one year, as some have pointed out. Second, the bones now clearly appear to be inside the tomb of the Great Roman. Thirdly, a question: is the “sacred chalice” a reference to the Holy Grail? If so, we need to think about Joseph of Arimathea and how his tomb is another label for a site on Saunière’s model.
In 9,84, there is another reference to the Great Roman:
King exposed will complete the slaughter,
After having discovered his origin:
Torrent to open the tomb of marble and lead,
Of a great Roman with 'Medusine' device.
The tomb is once again stipulated to be of marble and lead and it appears that this king has found his origins when the tomb of the Great Roman is opened. For anyone exposed to Priory documents, the idea of a Merovingian king restored to the throne of France comes to mind. Furthermore, there is a “Medusine” device, this means “like” or “of” a Medusa. It is believed that Nostradamus was inspired by Alciati’s Emblematum Libellus (Paris, 1542): emblem 157, which appeared just before Nostradamus’ publication of the quatrains. Other references are in 8, 66, 5, 7 and 9, 3.
The Great Roman
who is the Great Roman? There are hundreds of interpretations, but we are
only interested in one, for it comes from the close circle of Plantard –
Chyren – himself. According to Philippe de Chérisey, the man
held responsible by many to have created many of the faked documents that
lay at the creation of the Priory of Sion, when he was writing in Circuit,
this “Great Roman” was none other than Pompeius Quartus. Intriguingly,
De Chérisey brought the story of the “Great Roman” in
his sepulchre into the story of Rennes-le-Château, saying that two
people, Charlot and Marie Madeleine, discovered his tomb at Rennes-le-Château.
Like Plantard’s use of the nickname Chyren, few have taken note of de Chérisey’s statement. Whereas the story of Charlot and “Mary Magdalene” is more than likely made up (or at least unsubstantiated), the claim is not totally stupid.
There are monuments related to Pompeius Quartus that have been found in the area, some of which have been included in “Pierres gravées du Languedoc”, a book that is well-known to enthusiasts of the mystery. Equally, Jean-Luc Chaumeil in “Le Tresor du Triangle d’Or” has a photo caption which reads “The source of the Madeleine, the entry to the necropolis where the Great Roman had been interred”, which refers to the area of Rennes-les-Bains – not Rennes-le-Château as De Chérisey hinted at.
So, were some of the people involved in the creation of the Priory of Sion, and did they use Nostradamus and link him with Rennes-le-Château? Did Plantard see himself as Chyren and did they try to engineer the discovery of a mysterious tomb of Great Roman in Rennes-les-Bains and link it with their mission to perhaps change France, using Nostradamus’ prophecies as evidence for their claim? Perhaps.
There is, however, another interpretation, and it has all to do with the apocalypse. The medusa is a seven headed hydra. And amongst the “Romans”, there is one notorious one. The Irish prophet Malachy (ca. 1095-1148) prophesied that the last pope would be “Peter the Roman”: "In the final persecution of the holy Roman Church there will reign Peter the Roman, who will feed his flock amongst many tribulations; after which the Seven-hilled City (Rome) will be destroyed and the dreadful Judge will judge the people." From a logical perspective, trying to interpret Nostradamus together with Malachy makes no sense whatsoever – but that is quite common for prophecies. The question we need to ask here is whether Nostradamus, who would become a famous prophet, somehow used the prophecies of a famous predecessor, Malachy. Furthermore, what to make of the fact that Saunière knew about the prophecies of Malachy – a book on the subject is known to have been present in his library.
Nostradamus popularised apocalyptic messages – and the world ever since has continuously used his writings to argue the end of the world is nigh. That, more than anything else, is what Nostradamus should be famous for. He worked in the 16th century, but he was not the first to speak of an apocalypse, an end of time. In our field of interest, we will talk about another wanderer, Vincent Ferrer, sponsored this time by the king of Aragon, not France (like Nostradamus), who went through Europe, telling people to repent, so that apocalypse could happen. Was Nostradamus a variation on this theme? Did he copy existing prophecies and work them in such a way that they could be “shown” to predict the future, so that apocalyptic cries of impending doom would arise from the French people? If Nostradamus never intended this to happen, there are more than a dozen examples of people who used his centuries – or in the aftermath of 9/11 confabulated some new ones – to argue the end of times was nigh and to bring about social and political change.
Was Nostradamus working according to an agenda? We note that Nostradamus was was occasionally suspected of being a secret agent. In which case, on whose behalf? There are numerous options, but amongst the known records, we know that Nostradamus spent time in the Lyon region, and even the Lupé family. This is the same region which is visited by Saunière. And, surprise, surprise, the information Saunière collects there, have direct contacts with the mystery of the model, which will go on to identify the tomb of Christ, which in some interpretations has been seen as “the Great Roman”, an extrapolation because the Vatican is Christ’s work on Earth.
A theoretical scenario
Plantard was obviously inspired by Nostradamus. It may merely reflect his personal ambitions, to be identified as the prophetised future king of France. But what sceptics have ill-pointed out, is that Plantard did not set himself up as the pretender for the throne; he was the grandmaster of the Priory of Sion, protector of a truth. Only later on, with the arrival of Henry Lincoln, the waters began to muddle. Was Plantard inspired by a story, a long tradition, which saw people bring a new form of government to France? Did this vision involve echoes of previous attempts? Did it include or require some apocalyptic frenzy? Did that frenzy itself tie into the story of Saunière and his quest for a “secret location”? We – though most likely not Plantard – know this location was in Perillos; the Priory always hinted towards the two Rennes as “ground zero”. But when we note that ground zero is Perillos, the apocalyptic “ravings” of Vincent Ferrer suddenly come into a new focus. And to the list of preachers of doom, we should add Salvador Dali, who much later will identify the same grounds as from where “Europe will be abducted.”
It is an ironic coincidence – though possibly engineered – that Perillos is postcode 66600, contains a “tomb” and that Nostradamus in verse 6,66 speaks of a tomb. But let us not forgot one other person who comes here, with a mission: Cassini, who settles in Opoul, speaks to the locals (like Dali), in search of something, then drawing a map of the region which leaves the territory of the model blank. Coincidence therefore that inside the writings of Cassini, we find references to a “sepulchre”, a phrase which we know he copied from the church registers of Perillos?
A long tradition
What if Nostradamus should be included in the long list, not of grandmasters of the Priory of Sion – though some have worked him into that list, - but into the list of people that played part in the story of Perillos: people who were attracted by its mystery and “acted” in accordance with a plan, sometimes purely alone or within a small group, sometimes on a grander scale. What if we have never clearly interpreted Nostradamus’ role in trying to create an apocalyptic frenzy, like Ferrer before him, and that these Centuries were engineered to be part of this? Let us note that Ferrer worked with the Kings of Aragon and via the Perillos family with the kings of France. Nostradamus, a century later, then works with Catherine de Medici, at a time of French-Italian royal relationships. A century later, Fouquet is around the French king, and soon afterwards, Cassini is called from Italy to work with the French king too. It will then take another two centuries before Saunière enters the story and creates his model. Each story may seem unique, but always shares the basic design: a tomb and apocalyptic preaching. And that sums up Nostradamus…