In the article i wrote on St Irmina i mention an Amalgarde, who in 632, at the request of Dagobert I, raised a large army in Burgundy to dethrone the new king of the Goths, Suintila, and install a more favourable figure to the Frankish kings, Sisenand. Amalgarde was promised as a reward a missal, the most sacred part of the treasure of the Goths, given by the patrician Aetius.
In the above book, The Arcadian Cipher, authors Blake & Blezard discuss Dagobert I and his robbing of churches throughout Gaul. They posit that Dagobert I passed through the area of Rennes-le-Chateau saying that there is evidence to suggest that "during one of his frequent visits to the area Dagobert found his way to a hillside tomb, stripped it of its treasure and returned to Paris. On his return, his wife, Nanthilde, far from being impressed by the fruits of her husband's labours, became horrified.....she read the inscriptions on the pieces .... and insisted that he return them back to where he had found them.....Dagobert refused to heed his wife .... however .... he visited the monks at the Abbey of Saint Denis....one of the abbots appears to have proceeded with great haste to the tomb to bring the bodies back to Paris and subsequently took them on to Rome".
There is no reference given for this assertion. If anyone knows where this assertion could be followed up and analysed could they please contact me HERE. Many thanks.
Rennes-le-Château is a medieval castle and village situated in the Languedoc area of France. The turbulent history of the area is attested to by the scars on its landscape and by the many ancient fortifications that remain. The village of Rennes itself came to modern fame in the last 100 years. It began essentially when local rumours began to circulate about the existence of a hidden treasure. Although the rumours of a colossal treasure in the region were not new, what was new was that a priest, Berenger Saunière, was said to have discovered a hidden treasure in his church. The priest then went on to acquire and spend vast sums of money and to decorate his church in a most bizarre manner. He began strange lonely walks with Marie Denarnaud in the countryside, returning home with large bags of rocks on his shoulders late at night.
Read more HERE.
Under a title of a thread called Re: Réflexions sur l'énigme de Rennes le Chateau a poster named Hercules Navarrau-Arsa posted on 21 Mar 2013, 14:02 information that was quite breathtaking.
This poster would appear to be Ramuntxo (or Raymond) Sagarzazu, a well-known French researcher with early links to the beginning of the modern 'mystery' of Rennes-le-Château. Sagarzazu is thought to be behind the Paul Sennier letter [see HERE]. I have never met Sagarzazu, but i do respect some of his research. He also has a longevity which is twice as long as ours when it comes to devotion and time spent investigating the mystery of the two Rennes. The full exchanges can be found here http://renneslechateau-fr.com/rennes-chateau-rdv/reflexions-sur-enigme-rennes-chateau-t104-5340.html - but i have given a separate page to the important parts of his post [in my humble opinion].
The ideas he touches on will be familiar to some of the readers here in the various articles posted on this site. You can read it HERE.
Maziere wrote extensively on the mysteries of the Valley of Le Bezu. In particular he wrote about the stay of some Templars in this area until about 13th October 1307. They were not 'French' but actually from Roussillon (see HERE about the Templars of Roussillon). There, they were the hosts of the Lords of Rennes. The tradition Mazieres recorded about these Templars was the following:
I was never sure where the plateau of Lauzet was but i do now ....
From the article i mentioned below, is another interesting snippet:
"I was also able to learn that in 1946, a civil servant employed by the City of Paris to inspect buildings damaged during World War II entered a partially hidden basement of a large structure within the city. He had to struggle through rubble to gain entrance, but once inside he spied a vast collection of golden objects. Some of the [items] he was able to recreate by drawings. They appeared much like the seven-branched candelabrum of the Jews. He asked the city for permission to re-enter and examine further or to have the assistance of the city in that effort. His request was not answered until 1963. When he re-entered the building with other employees, the vast underground room was empty".
Does any French researcher know about this? Have you further information? Please let me know if you do via the contacts page. Simply fascinating.
I wonder why Plantard chose the Gisor's story with stolen coffers from a later empty basement when he could have had this one of a later empty basement room in Paris which may have held the Temple treasure of the Jews?
In the Rennes Observer of June 2002 a very strange article appeared. It was an extract from an 'original article' [no information on where this original article was first published was stated] by a researcher named David Ellsworth. Ellsworth published this article in 1992 and claims to have compiled it from his research in the Vatican Archives between 1981-1984. Some of his assertions are as follows:
"Berenger Saunière's personal 'treasure' was 'knowledge'. No references to the priest Berenger Saunière is found in the Vatican Archives All records have mysteriously been removed.
A very old priest [at the Vatican] who had worked with the Secret Archives for forty years requested a meeting with [Ellsworth]. This priest told him;
'all mention of Berenger Saunière has been purged from the Vatican. It was as if he had never lived ..... Father d'Ferrogino, the priest who refused the 'Last Rites' to Saunière ...never recovered from what he learnt from Saunière that day'.
This priest at the Vatican went on to tell Ellsworth about the knowledge held by Saunière was.....
"It was about nine knights in Jerusalem ...they had dug beneath the ancient temple of Jerusalem, within Solomon's stables, in the search for gold ..... they had uncovered four caches of gold, silver, jewels and something else. This [something else] was a copper coffin. A coffin that bore the inscription 'Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews'. Below this, there was writing in Hebrew, that when translated, told of the placement of the coffin beneath the temple, and that it had been done by order of one of the chief priests, Nicodemus.
The Templars were stricken .....the very foundations of their faith, based upon a physical resurrection, was shaken beyond repair. At the same time ....they knew ..... if properly utilised this knowledge [would] bring immense wealth and power. The problem was that if they presented the coffin and its contents to the Church - the chances were that they would be slain 'to protect the sanctity of the Church'.
The knights, the priest from the Vatican then alleges, agreed to form a secret branch separate from the Templars [called the Prieurie de Sion] - a branch that would be totally clandestine and would serve as the 'keeper of treasures'. It was the task of these Templars to discover some way in which to convince authorities in Rome what they had found .... they sent an emissary to discuss the problem with Saint Bernard. Bernard advised them to take their discovery to a monastery in Turkey ..... there a monk had discovered a process by which documents could be copied chemically. Parchments would be soaked in invisible dye and placed over the original before being spread out in the sunlight. As the chemical dried, images of the document beneath it would appear on the upper sheet.
In Turkey, they [the Templars?] also learnt that copper was a perfect sealant for bodies. The corpse inside copper coffins would remain intact and well preserved. [Therefore the Templars had the idea?] of placing a damp cloth over the corpse [in the cooper coffin they had found?] and placing it in sunlight, and within hours the 'natural gases' released from the body formed light stains on the cloth - stains that would be indelible forever'.
'The cloth was presented to Pope Innocent II. In response, claimed the priest at the Vatican, the Templars were given lands, wealth, ships and power because the Pope realised that the Templars could bring down the whole edifice of Christianity. The Vatican priest also sent Ellsworth to see a Canon Alfred Lilley. Lilley told Elsworth:
"I'll tell you what you want to know in short terms. The treasure of Saunière was that he discovered the tale of the Templars ..... he blackmailed the church for 20 years .....the treasure consists of incontrovertible proof that the Crucifixion was a fraud and that Jesus was alive as late as 45AD"
Does anyone know any more about this researcher called David Ellsworth? The inference is that his research was done before even the publication of Holy Blood, Holy Grail. Some extracts of this article even read verbatim like chunks out of Holy Blood, Holy Grail. The amazing thing for me, is yet again, the suggestion that the whole solution to this 'mystery' is the fate of the body of the historical figure called Jesus of Nazareth. Just why does research conducted by researchers always come back to this idea?
Supposing, just for one minute, that this is the truth?
Rhedesium is pleased to announce the publication of Paul Saussez'exclusive presentation of a never before published essay: "A Concise History of Rennes-le-Château in Languedoc"
This is the first installment - and each month we will add chapters and build up the history of Rennes-le-Château. Check back regularly to read more.
"Of all the heresies in the Middle Ages, none posed more of a threat to the Catholic Church in either perception or reality than did Catharism. Though there is no consensus among scholars about actual numbers of those committed to Cathar teaching, there is no question that in certain areas of Europe, especially Southern France and Northern Italy, Catharism had wide popular appeal and the support of significant local figures. The phenomenon of Catharism made a great impact on the Catholic Church. The anxiety caused by this heresy led to the “professionalization” and standardization of inquisitorial procedure under the control of the papacy. It was against Cathars that the Dominican mission first took shape".
As the Cathars are regularly cited as having some bearing on the enigma of Rennes-le-Chateau, here is an interesting article on them.
I was perusing my old copies of the Rennes Observers (the journal of the now defunct Rennes Group - although i hear things are afoot to try and revive it) and in Issue 52 there was a short article written by Stephen Anderson about the 'Original Parchments' held by Jean-Luc Chaumeil. It was interesting and set me thinking. Having seen the work of my fellow researcher Paul Karren (see HERE) i am convinced that he has found a 'key' on the so called Small Parchment and therefore in light of Anderson's comments it became important which 'parchment' in the saga of Rennes-le-Chateau was the 'orignal'.
I had already touched upon this idea before. HERE i discuss the source of Parchment 1, which is of course the Codex Bezae.
Obviously there is no 'code' on the original Codex Bezae - (by code i mean the dots and strokes that are apparent on the 'popular' representations of the Parchments famous in the Rennes research community) - and this is there for all to see and verify on the digitized copy of the relevant source page found on the Cambridge University website.
However, if there is a code implied by the dots on the Rennes 'version's' of the parchments [as suggested by Karren] when were they placed there and who by?
Visual copies of the Codex Bezae only became available when the Codex was first printed - this would presumably represent the earliest date of when the relevant 'paragraph' could have been manipulated/copied etc. While i have in the past speculated that in theory anyone who had access to the Bezae document when it first arrived at Cambridge University (1581) and, in fact, any of those who were guardians of the manuscript prior to this - could have copied the text out and 'added' the code at any time using their available implements - i chose to go with the more obvious theory if you will, which suggests that the earliest 'easy' way to copy the document would have been from 1899 when Scrivener edited the text and when photographic facsimile's of the manuscript were published.
There are those who believe the codes were created by Boudet or even Sauniere and in that case the dates would still fit these timelines.
However, until proved otherwise, the working hypothesis of most researchers is that Cherisey is to be accepted at his word in this instance and his answer that the parchments were created for a radio show. I have always found this odd though as what use would created 'visual' documents be for a radio show? Its not like the listeners would be able to see the documents on the 'radio' so why bother creating them?
Anderson began by saying in his article:
"In the Timewatch documentary 'History of a Mystery' Jean-Luc Chaumeil waved around what he said were the 'original parchments' along with a note purportedly from Pierre Plantard written in red ink on the snaller parchment where he allegedly gave these as the 'originals' of the 'false documents'. He doesnt mention that at the top of that note can clearly be read 'photocopie' (which makes Chaumeils assertion that he had these parchments tested and founded them to be modern ridiculously unnecessary, since photocopying did not exist in Bigou's time, of course)."
Anderson then went on to say:
"In 'Le Testament du Prieure de Sion', Chaumeil reproduces the smaller parchment in the Plates section, but somehow the note from Plantard has disappeared. Examination of Chaumeils 'Manuscript II' has all the earmarks of a 'copy of a copy of a copy' (with successive generations of photocopying, the white spaces tend to get darker), certainly not the original he claims to have".
This led me to actually take a closer look at the earliest renditions of the parchments (particularly the small one) and when they were first published and where. You can see my suggestions below (although of course the list may be incomplete and different in the case of French researchers, please up date me if you would like to):
The timeline of parchment publications that i am aware of are as follows:
1967 Both parchments shown in de Sede's L'Or de Rennes. The first ever publication of the parchments.
As i am mainly at this time concerned with the small Parchment here is de Sedes copy close up;
Note here, that in its 'original' and FIRST publication - the dots etc are in place. Whoever supplied de Sede with the Small Parchment, the dots were already present and obviously intended to be in place and seen.
In 2006 however Chaumeil published his 'Testament of the Priory of Sion". Here is a photograph i took of the page in the book showing the same Small Parchment:
As one can see the copy seems to be a 'clean' version of the Small parchment with the extra dots and additions missing. How is it that in 1967 a version of this parchment is published with dots etc but that in 2006 a version was published which was clear of these markings and is said to be the original?
In 1971 Cherisey produces his novel CIRCUIT. In this novel, the small parchment is replaced by a drawing/diagram of the headstone of Marie de Negri's burial. The Large Parchment is the same as the one we are used to seeing (see below).
In 1978 Franck Marie then publishes his 'Critical Studies of Rennes-le-Chateau'. Here is his Small Parchment:
Then in 1986 Lincoln et al published their copies of the parchments in their book 'The Messianic Legacy'. Here they are:
Here is a close up of the Small Parchment that Lincoln et al published:
As we see again, Chaumeil's 'orignal' seems to be the same 'parchment' that Franck Marie had and the very same that Lincoln et al later had. However, de Sede - who is the earliest and first person to publish the Small Parchment - has a 'copy' that has the extra marks mostly in the form of dots etc and these appear to be exclusive to de Sede.
Does this mean essentially there were two copies of these parchments 'doing the rounds' - one with the additions and one without? Which is the more important? Are the versions held by Chaumeil, Marie, Lincoln etc not the originals? Is it possible that there was one standard 'clean copy' that Cherisey copied out from his source and another one that had the additions added. In other words one was a 'working' copy, or a work in progress? This would mean, i suggest, that the clean and simple copy is not that important but the one with the additions.
This contradicts what Lincoln says below although i would have agreed with him if it wasn't for the fact that in 1967 the two 'originals' (one clean copy and one with added additions) were both available. I would further have agreed with Lincoln if de Sede had published the blank clean version and then the one Lincoln published in 1986 had the additions .....
This leads me to a comment Lincoln made in his book 'Key to the Sacred Pattern' on page 151. He said:
"The parchments, as reproduced in de Sedes book - and in every other book and film since (including my own) - have many dots, strokes and accents inserted into the spaces between the lines of text. Many researchers have spent much time in attempting to wrest some sort of sense from these marks. The photographs i am shown demonstrate that these are not present in the originals. They have been added in blue ink, clearly visible on the glossy surface of the prints. These are de Cherisey's 'confections'".
There are several comments to be made about Lincoln's observations:
1) When he refers to the parchment photographs he saw, with the dots and strokes added on to the photos - how come what he finally published were the ones which did not show these dots and strokes? Why would he assume, if there are two versions, that the more important one is the 'clean' copy? Did he make an assumption that Cherisey was tinkering about with the 'original' clean photo for no particular reason?
2) Also, for that matter, it is not clear that what Chaumeil had are 'photos' of the small parchment. They looked like paper in the Timewatch documentary.
3) The question then - is how de Sede came by copies with dots and strokes on them because his was the first and the original. Logically the first that is published could mean his was the important one, and everyone else later got the 'blank' copies as it were. In 1967 the two versions were already 'available' and Plantard and Cherisey were perhaps dictating who got which version.
This may be a little clearer when we look at the Large Parchment version Chaumeil publishes. Here is Chaumeil's version:
Now note the version we are all used to seeing below. See the differences from the above version.
As Anderson very ably pointed out in his article, Chaumeil's version of the Large Parchment has all the hallmarks of a 'worksheet'. Perhaps the Small parchment was used in the same way?
And why all the concentration on these Parchments? Why is it important? As i am someone who thinks that Cherisey - even though he called himself the Prankster - really did believe there was something to this legend about Rennes-le-Chateau and Rennes-les-Bains - i do not think he invested all this time and energy for essentially just a 'joke' to fool a gullible public. If i was not confronted with the staggering information contained in the Small Parchment (from the research of Paul Karren) it would perhaps not be so important. I am still of the opinion that Cherisey (at this moment in time anyway, on the available 'evidence') couldnt have 'invented' this information identified by Karren alone so we remain with two possibilities:
1) That Cherisey was working from previous knowledge.
2) Or he obtained information that he wanted to code into this Small Parchment. These are not the codes that lead to the famous 'hidden messages'.
Maybe Cherisey was copying from some other source of information but the upshot is that he was dictating who got the parchments with the useful information and contrary to how other observers feel, it would be the copies published in L'Or de Rennes first that are important!
The exact 'biography' of the painting is not known for certain. We are not sure who commissioned it and who owned it in its early history. It is well conjectured that the 'chevalier' Henri Avice most certainly had possession of the canvas before 1662. There is no evidence that he commissioned it. We do know the painting was listed as an asset of Charles Antoine Herault (1644-1718). There are of course references to the King buying the painting from Herault.
In conversation with Adrian Lodge, who has given me permission to repeat this information, we discussed a new 'connection' that he had discovered. The King had purchased 'Shepherds of Arcadia' along with another painting by Poussin, one called 'La Sainte Famille avec St Jean et Sainte Elisabeth dans un paysage'.
The King bought both in 1685 for 6000 Francs. And the interesting connection? La Sainte Famille was painted by Poussin to be given as a wedding present (in February 1651) to Marie Madeleine de Castile - from her husband to be - who was none other than Nicolas Fouquet, the Superintendent of Finances in France from 1653 until 1661 under King Louis XIV.
Were the two paintings supposed to be read together perhaps? And did Fouquet order the painting for his wife personally from Poussin? In other words, was their relationship alot closer than we think?
I have recently become interested in the assertion made by Abbe Delmas [in 1709] that the settlers of the original Roman village of Rennes-les-Bains were veteran soldiers from the Seventh Legion. Delmas had written:
"The tenth Roman colony was called Colonia Decimenorum and was augmented on the orders of Julius Caesar, who called it Colonia Sulla Patena, as evidenced by numerous inscriptions found in Narbonne. The colony which settled in Beziers was drawn from the Seventh Legion and was called Colonia Septimanorum. One was established at Nimes, which was drawn from the legion which went to Egypt to conquer Mark Antony, and because of that, the town of Nimes has a crocodile for its arms. Those who lived at Bains were also drawn from this legion and it is for this reason that there is a great number of medals of this legion [at Rennes-les-Bains] as well as other medallions from Montpellier". Read more HERE.
I dont know how many English researchers are aware of the work of French researcher Jean Alain Sipra. For many years he has talked about the remains of a mausoleum that he thinks is at the bottom of the hill of Rennes le-Château . Recently he commissioned a model to be made of this mausoleum and you can view it HERE.
The remains of the outline of the building he obtained from aerial photographs.
After discussing with a fellow researcher the exact location, she supplied some Google maps that orientated it better. I did not realise it was so close to the fountain of Elizabeth Van Buren fame. They are shown below.
As we know archaeological features may be more visible from the air than on the ground. In temperate Europe, aerial reconnaissance is one of the important ways in which new archaeological sites are discovered. Tiny differences in ground conditions caused by buried features can be emphasised by a number of factors and then viewed from the air. For example slight differences in ground levels will cast shadows when the sun is low and these can be seen best from an aeroplane. These are referred to as 'shadow marks'. Buried ditches will hold more water and buried walls will hold less water than undisturbed ground, this phenomenon, amongst others, causes crops to grow better or worse, taller or shorter, over each kind of ground and therefore define buried features which are apparent as tonal or colour differences. Such effects are called crop marks. Slight differences in soil colour between natural deposits and archaeological ones can also often show in ploughed fields as soil marks. Differences in levels and buried features will also affect the way surface water behaves across a site and can produce a striking effect after heavy rain [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aerial_archaeology]
I am not sure what local conditions pertained when the 1980 aerial photo was taken of the 'site'. I dont know if the field was ever used for crop growing. If it was we would expect sights such as this:
Shadow marks are a form of archaeological feature visible from the air. Unlike cropmarks they require upstanding features to work and are therefore more commonly seen in the context of extant sites rather than previously undiscovered buried ones. They are caused by the differences in height on the ground produced by archaeological remains. In the case of ancient, eroded earthworks these differences are often small and they are most apparent when viewed from the air, when the sun is low in the sky. This causes long shadows to be cast by the higher features, which are illuminated from one side by the sun, with dark shadows marking hollows and depressions. Shadow marks are best viewed obliquely rather than from directly above in order to emphasise the effect of the shadows. [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shadow_marks].
I think i remember reading that Sipra reported he was working with an archaeological team. I presume they would have done some further investigation such as a field survey, GPR, magnetometery and electrical resistivity testing. I do not know what these results showed up.
Would we find a mausoleum at the bottom of the hill of Rennes-le-Chateau? Would it be in complete isolation? I know some feel the ancient village of Rennes-le-Chateau was spread out far and wide over the countryside. The problem with that is that there is no evidence of this occupation 'far and wide'. It does not turn up the evidence, for example, that Rennes-les-Bains turns up for Roman occupation.
I guess we will have to 'watch this space' as they say.
Many thanks to Tina for supplying the pictures!
Welcome to the blog of Rhedesium
My name is Sandy Hamblett, inspired and passionate researcher of the mysteries at Rennes-les-Bains.