Elmar R. Gruber has written a comprehensive comment on my
hypothesis about the
non-authenticity of Les Significations
de l’Eclipse du 16 septembre 1559.
He qualifies the hypothesis that Les Significations… is
not an authentic Nostradamian text, as wrong. In his comment, he
frequently refers to the contents of the Prognostication
for the year 1559 (the 1559-Progno-GB).
Dr. Gruber, born in Vienna in
1955, studied psychology, philosophy and ethnology. He did
research for the Institute for Border Areas of Psychology and
Mental Hygiene in Freibourg, Germany. Since a couple of years,
he studies the life and work of Nostradamus. In 2003, he
published the book Nostradamus: sein Leben, sein Werk und die
wahre Bedeutung seiner Prophezeiungen.
this article, astrological data in Les Significations… are
compared with astrological data regarding the September 1559 Lunar
Eclipse in the 1559-Progno-GB and the 1559-Commentaires.
Also, a comparison is made between astrological data in Les
Significations…and Eclipsium omnium… The aim is to verify
if Les Significations… is what people say it is: an authentic
text, in which Nostradamus around August 1558, after finishing the 1559-Almanach-F
and the 1559-Prono-F, wrote a rejoinder to his detractors,
wrapped in predictions for an impending Lunar Eclipse. He copied these
predictions from Eclipsium omnium… i.e. he translated these
predictions from Latin into French, and elaborated them.
time spans of Eclipses, prior to the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse
1559-Progno-GB is an English translation of the predictions for
each month in the 1559-Almanach-F. Les Significations…
is supposed to be written shortly after the completion in 1558 of the 1559-Almanach-F
and the 1559-Prono-F. Gruber showed that the long time span and
the pre-impact of the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse are not unique
features of Les Significations… Nostradamus discussed them
already in several parts in the 1559-Progno-GB. Gruber concludes
that Nostradamus determined the pre-impact and the long time span of the
September 1559 Lunar Eclipse in 1558. Therefore, a hypothesis about a
revised time span, introduced by a forger on a later moment, would not
also reports that Nostradamus was not consistent in his way of
determining time spans of Eclipses, even though he knew the rules
regarding this theme. From time to time, he took the liberty “to surpass the licit realms of astrology”, feeling to be a “divinely
inspired” prophet, in this astrological
matter and other ones. This implies that his determinations have
gone this way or that way, without enabling Century-scholars to examine their
astrological fundaments. Gruber supposes that the death of two kings in
the impact period is sheer coincidence.
Gruber’s hypothesis looks quite
plausible. However, from a prediction point of view, there is too much
coincidence. Is it sheer coincidence that in an impact-period, resulting
from a non-astrological way of determination, a clear visibility of the
impact of the Eclipse in June 1559 coincides with the lethal accident of
Henry II? Is it sheer coincidence that the end of this impact-period
(the end of 1560) coincides with the decease of Francis II?
answer to these questions might be found in bibliographical data. The 1559-Progno-GB
is a translation of the 1559-Almanach-F. This Almanach was
completed before the writing of Les Significations… was
started. The 1559-Almanach-F is an authentic Nostradamian text.
If parts of this Almanach, such as the time span of the September
1559 Lunar Eclipse, occur again in Les Significations…, there
is no reason to doubt the authenticity of Les Significations…
than once, however, research in the Nostradamian field has shown that
bibliographical data are not always reliable. Other sources are also
required to evaluate the Nostradamian character of the time span of the
September 1559 Lunar Eclipse.
To prove the Nostradamian character
of the time span of the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse, it is helpful to
evaluate the origins of the Eclipse time spans, given by Nostradamus.
The best method is to check the time spans of all treated Eclipses. If
from the first treated Eclipse, the length of a significant number of
time spans differs from what general rules imply, it is evident that
Nostradamus used several ways of determination, whether or not by
“divine inspiration”. If the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse turns out
to be the first case in which the time span differs from what general
rules imply, the objections towards the predictional value of this time
span are not eliminated.
sources, which are at my disposal, only permit a partial
check, based upon Eclipses, mentioned by the name. The verified Eclipses
occurred before the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse.
the RPP-Commentaires regarding 1550, 1552 and 1553, no Eclipse is
mentioned. This does not mean by definition that in these years no
visible Eclipses occurred.
Regarding predictions for 1551, no data are available in the RPP-Commentaires.
#231 in the 1554-Commentaires deals with the December 1554 Lunar
Eclipse. No pre-impact is
mentioned. The length of the impact period is not given. The rest of the
1554-Commentaires does not give reason to suppose a length which
is longer than average. In the rest, there is no reference to a
#360 and #361 in the 1555-Commentaires deal with the June 1555
Lunar Eclipse. No pre-impact is
mentioned. The length of the impact period is not given. The rest of the
1555-Commentaires does not give reason to suppose a length which
is longer than average. In the rest, there is no reference to a
Twice, the Lunar Eclipse is mentioned in the 1555-Prono-F itself.
Both times, this Eclipse is dated on June 4, 1555, 15:28. Its possible
impact is described, the duration of this impact is not given.
#123 in the 1556-Commentaires deals with a Full Moon (pleine
Lune), which brings peace.
Leovitius, in his Eclipsium omnium…, classifies this Full Moon,
occurring on November 16, 1556, as a Lunar Eclipse (Sun: 5 Sagittarius,
Moon: 6 Gemini, Caput Draconis: 25 Taurus).
#153 in the 1556-Commentaires deals with a New Moon (nouvelle
Lune) and another peaceful period. Leovitius
classifies this New Moon, occuring on November 1, 1556, as a Solar Eclipse (Sun and Moon: 20 Scorpio,
Caput Draconis: 26 Taurus).
Eclipse is mentioned for 1557. This is also the case in Eclipsium
omnium… Leovitius explicitly writes that no Eclipses will be
visible in 1557, meaning that they are below the Ascendant-Descendant
axis for the meridian of Augsburg, Bavaria.
#79 and #80 in the 1558-Commentaires deal with the April 1558
In item #79, a short length of the impact period is mentioned:
lunaire qui est en cest endroit concerne la plus part les effect
belliques, & selon aucuns pestilence & famine, & diversité
de sectes, & le tout estre de petite durée.
author of the RPP notes in the margin: Duration d’icelle
selon la commune opinion. There is no reference to a pre-impact.
#80 seems to present an impact period until 1562:
selon les plus apparents & resoluz toutes telles calamitez durent
jusques à l’an 1562…
author of the RPP notes in the margin: Selon l’opinion de
l’auteur. Entrée des troubles de 1562. Paix de 1563.
the case of the April 1558 Lunar Eclipse, item #79 contains a
determination of the time span according to general rules, whereas in
item #80 the determination of the time span seems to be the result of
another approach. Both items deal with the 1558-Almanach-F. In
the 1558-Prono-F, the estimation of the impact period of the
April 1558 Lunar Eclipse is quoted from book 2, chapter 7, of
Ptolemy’s Tetrabiblos, and even the precise location on the
page is mentioned:
comme afferme Ptolomée en son second livre du Quadripart.chap.7.au
In the predictions, based upon the
lunar phases, the impact period lasts four months;
Lune le.2.iourà12.heu32.mi à 15.deg.44.mi.de Libra, froide &
feiche, avec vent, froidure, & encores quelques brouillas,
eclipsee du tout presageant ce qu’est contenu, que à destension
pre-impact is mentioned.
Eclipsium omnium…, not only the April 1558 Lunar Eclipse is
treated, but also the April 1558 Solar Eclipse (Sun: 8 Taurus, Moon: 9
Taurus, Caput Draconis: 28 Aries). In the 1558-Prono-F, this
Solar Eclipse is classified as an ordinary New Moon.
seems that the Lunar Eclipses in 1554 and 1555 have a normal impact
period, calculated according to the rules of Ptolemy. This also goes for
the April 1558 Lunar Eclipse in the 1558-Prono-F. The 1558-Almanach-F
contains contradictory remarks, but the first remark clearly points to a
normal impact period. In other words: chances are that the September
1559 Lunar Eclipse is the first one to have a serious deviation of the
impact period, both in terms of pre-impact (6 months) and post-impact
The time span in the 1559-Progno-GB
the prediction for February 1559, an impact period of six months is
mentioned, starting three months before September 16, 1559:
And because that many
miserable afflictions appeare to happen thre monethes before the Eclipse
and thre monethes after, whiche shalbe the.16.of September, and continue
three houres altogether Eclipsed and darkened…
line contains a three-month pre-impact and a three-month impact after
September 16, 1559. It contains a clear reference to the time
determination system as developed by Ptolemy, by converting the number
of hours of the Eclipse into months, counting from the date of the
prediction for March 1559 contains a reference to a pre-impact of the
September 1559 Lunar Eclipse, starting around the end of March, but
without a reference to a time system:
At the ende of this
moneth shall many humayne monsters be borne. The prediction of the
Eclypse of September shall woorke his wicked effectes at the ende of the
same moneth, and of the moneth followynge…
prediction for April 1559 seems to refer to a time system regarding the
determination of the time span of the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse:
it [the impact of the Eclipse] shalbe long and
continue a good whyle as many monethes as howres in the.24.howres of the
line can be interpreted as a reference to a 24-month length of the
impact period of the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse. An impact period of
21 months can not be derived from this line.
this line must be related to the 3 hours and 24 minutes length of the
Lunar Eclipse, given in the prediction for September 1559, it refers to
Ptolemy’s time determination system. The result is a period of 102
days, counting from September 16, 1559, assumed that one month is
estimated to be 30 days.
In the prediction for
September 1559, there is a reference to a pre-impact, counting from
March 1559, and to a three-month period after the Eclipse:
declaring like thinges past in the moneth of Marche, and of the three
moneths after the appearance of the same bycause that this Eclipse is
very great by longitude and latitude for otherwyse it should not be an
Eclipse, and this Eclipse by his significations, and by the same that
was in the last yeare in the moneth of April, did portende miserable
significations for a longe tyme…
looks as if this line also contains a reference between to the time
determination system as developed by Ptolemy. In this line, there is
also a reference to the April 1558 Lunar Eclipse.
the same prediction, it is stated that the impact of the September 1559
Lunar Eclipse will last until the end of 1560:
But what misery,
calamitie and trouble is presaged and pronounced unto us in the rest of
the yeare and almoste all the yeare.1560.and of the first three monethes
of this present year…
might derive that the first three months of 1559 are also included in
the impact period. This would result in a pre-impact of nine months.
part of the 1559-Commentaires, entitled D’un autre presage
sur la mêsme année, deals with the contents of the 1559-Prono-F.
Item #342 in this part of the 1559-Commentaires deals with the
impact of the Eclipse in the last months of 1559 and a part of 1560:
dans les quatre parties de l’année adviennent aucunes estranges
adventures, les fault attendre dans le revolu de ces trois mois,
Septembre, Octobre, Novembre & la moitié de Decembre, par
l’influence de l’Eclipse. Et puis ce qu’on attendra se prolongera
pour quelque temps.
item refers to the quarterchart for autumn 1559. The time span of three
months is related to the period September 13 – December 13, 1559, in
which the Sun moves from the first degree of Libra to the first degree
of Capricorn. There is no reference to Ptolemy’s time determination
system, although once again a three-month period is mentioned. The
September 1559 Lunar Eclipse occurred only three days after the ingress
of the Sun in Libra.
#367 in this part of the 1559-Commentaires contains a reference
to a pre-impact, counting from March 1559:
ce mois [March] aura les effects des menaces faites par
l’eclipse sequent, pource qu’il est diametralement oppose à
In this line, the
beginning of the pre-impact seems to be related to the fact that the
first degrees of Aries are across the first degrees of Libra, the solar
sign of the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse.
#368 contains a Latin line, dealing with events, occurring at the time
of Lunar Eclipses, sometimes even before a Lunar Eclipse takes place:
autem Lunarium quaedam tunc aut etiam ante quam eveniant, imbres
adferunt, quaedam siccitatem, ventos aliae & terra motus, aliae
sterilitatem, quaedam incendium [eclipse de lune: certaines, à ce
moment-là ou même avant de se produire, apportent des pluies,
certaines la sécheresse, d’autres des vents et des tremblements de
terre, d’autres la stérilité, certaines des incendies]. Icy le tout
n’est que fort à craindre & encores beaucoup plus le mois de Mars
Latin text implies that this line is quoted from another source (perhaps
from a book by Albumasar, who is mentioned twice in the 1559-Progno-GB).
The discovery of this source might shine more light on the way
Nostradamus determined time spans. The quoted Latin text clearly refers
to a pre-impact, but not to the length of such a pre-impact. It does not
refer to the duration of the impact period after the Eclipse.
to Les Significations…, the time span of the impact of the
September 1559 Lunar Eclipse runs from March 1559 until the end of 1560.
The impact is clearly noticeable from June 1559 until the end of 1559.
There are no references to Ptolemy’s time determination system.
The elimination of all references to the Ptolemaic time system might
have been the result of the elaboration of previous analysed data, as
suggested in the introductory lines of Les Significations…
to bibliographical data, the writing of Les Significations…
started shortly after the completion of the 1559-Almanach-F and
the 1559-Prono-F. The writing of Les Significations… was
finished on August 14, 1558. The privilege for the 1559-Almanach-F
was dated on October 7, 1558.
contains a reply to some of Nostradamus’ critics. If the 1559-Almanach-F,
the 1559-Prono-F and Les Significations… were printed
around or after October 7, 1558, it would have been feasible for
Nostradamus to rectify prediction data in the 1559-Almanach-F and
the 1559-Prono-F, in order to prevent renewed attacks by his
critics. It would be easy for them to demonstrate the inconsistency in
the length of an impact period in three books.
it is written in both the 1559-Almanach-F and the 1559-Prono-F
that the pre-impact of the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse starts in March
1559 and that the impact ends at the end of 1560, there are many
references to Polemy’s
time determination system. In other words: there are many references to
an impact of three months, counting from the date of the Eclipse. These
references are quite concrete. It would have been logical, if the time
span is 21 months, counting from March 1559, that the references to
Ptolemy’s time determination system would have been deleted,
especially since in Les Significations… the time span is
defined to be 21 months, counting from March 1559. This did not happen.
chart versus a chart
notes that incompatible astrological data occur throughout Almanachs,
Pronostications and horoscopes made by Nostradamus. Therefore, he
qualifies this phenomenon as Nostradamus’ “trade-mark”.
Les Significations…, the incompatibility does not deal with
times of lunar phases, but with two incompatible charts. In the
introductory lines of Les Significations…, Mars is presented as
being in the midst of heaven. This means that Mars is in the tenth house
in a chart of the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse. Mars is said to be in
square with the Cauda Draconis, the South Lunar Node. According to
software-data, this is correct. At the time of the September 1559 Lunar
Eclipse, Mars was on 6 Capricorn in 10, squaring the Cauda Draconis on 1
few lines further, Mars is mentioned as being in the eighth house, not
far away from Antares. This remark is copied from the praedictio
astrologica in Leovitius’ Eclipsium omnium… In the chart,
calculated by Leovitius, Mars is on 8 Sagittarius in the eighth house.
Antares is on 3 Sagittarius.
incompatibility of the house positions of Mars is not caused by
misreading the ephemeris, but by different charts: a calculated one,
quoted in the first lines of Les Significations…, and data,
copied from the Eclipsium omnium…
Les Significations…, Leovitius’ remark about the Eclipse
taking place on 2 Aries is also copied. Whoever mentions this, knows
that one of the Lunar Nodes must be close to this position. According to
the chart by Leovitius, Mars on 8 Sagittarius is not squaring the Cauda
Draconis, but in sextile with it. A square, as given in the introductory
lines, is simply impossible.
question is if Nostradamus calculated a chart for the September 1559
Lunar Eclipse. The 1559-Progno-GB does not seem to contain clear
traces of such a chart. In the 1559-Progno-GB, the given date and
time of the Eclipse is: September 16, 1559, 5 of the clocke 17
minutes (17:17, counting from midnight). This time, 17:17, does not
necessarily mean that a chart of the Eclipse has been calculated and
interpreted while writing the predictions in the 1559-Progno-GB
(calculations, based upon this time, result in an MC in Sagittarius, an
Ascendant in Pisces and Mars on 6 Capricorn in 10). There are no
references to house positions of the Sun, the Moon, the planets or the
Lunar Nodes. There is also no reference to a ruler of the Eclipse,
whereas in Les Significations…, Mars is said to be the ruler of
the 1559-Progno-GB, there is a reference to a Moon-Caput Draconis
conjunction at the time of the Eclipse: the Full Mone […] Eclipsed
in the head of the dragon. This is probably a conjunction with an
orb of 1 degree of arc, based upon 29:50 Pisces, the noon lunar
longitude on September 16, 1559, and 0:16 Aries, the noon longitude of
the Caput Draconis. In the case of the April 2 1558 Lunar Eclipse, the
given lunar longitude (15:44 Libra) is a noon lunar longitude.
the 1559-Progno-GB, the lunar longitudes, given for the Full Moon
on January 23, 1559 and the First Quarter on June 12, 1559, are also
noon lunar longitudes.
#409 in the 1559-Commentaires deals with a peaceful impact of
Mars around the time of the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse:
par la radiation de Jupiter, fait signe d’assoupissement.
item quotes a line from the 1559-Prono-F. This line is a
description of the impact of a sextile between Mars in Capricorn and
Jupiter retrograde in Pisces. It shows that Nostradamus knew about the
position of Mars in Capricorn at the time of the September 1559 Lunar
Eclipse. In the chart by Leovitius, Mars is supposed to be on 8 Sagittarius, thus squaring Jupiter retrograde. This does not fit to the
Mars-Jupiter sextile in the 1559-Prono-F.
the 1559-Progno-GB, a part of the prediction for September 1559
first quarter the 8.day at 4.of the clocke with a coniunction of Mars
nighe unto the retrogradation of Saturne in signo Geminorum…
According to software
data, this First Quarter occurred on September 8, 1559, 15:23 True Local
Time Venice. The Sun was on 25 Virgo, the Moon on 25 Sagittarius, Mars
on 1 Capricorn, Saturn stationary. A zodiacal longitude of Mars on 8 Sagittarius, as supposed by Leovitius, does not fit to the remark about
the zodiacal longitude of Mars, eight days before the September 1559
Lunar Eclipse, given in the 1559-Progno-GB.
In the 1559-Progno-GB,
the sign position of Mars is also given in the prediction for October
1559. A part of this prediction reads:
tyme shalbe given to rayne: but bycause of a quadrine aspecte of the
Sunne unto Mars…
that the New Moon on October 1, 1559, on 18 Libra, was in square with
Mars on 15 Capricorn.
Next, the First
Quarter is given at the 8.day at 7.of the clocke in the morning,
ioyned to Mars in Capricorne, by another aspect of Iupiter occidental
unto Venus… Software-data show that during this First Quarter,
which took place at 6:17 True Local Time Venice, the Moon was on 25
Capricorn, conjunct Mars on 20 Capricorn, while Jupiter retrograde on 9
Pisces was in square with Venus on 11 Sagittarius.
Les Significations…, astrological remarks by Leovitius are
copied, based upon a chart with Mars on 8 Sagittarius in the eighth
house. One of the themes of Leovitius is the affliction of Jupiter by
Mars and Saturn, the two malefics. If one assumes that Nostradamus
copied and elaborated the contents of the praedictio astrologica
for the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse, one has to explain why, within
three months after completing the 1559-Almanach-F and the 1559-Prono-F,
he copied data about Mars (zodiacal longitude and aspects) which are
incompatible with data, treated by himself in the 1559-Almanach-F
and the 1559-Prono-F.
first lines of Les Significations… imply an elaboration of the
contents of the 1559-Almanach-F and the 1559-Prono-F
regarding the predictions for the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse. In the 1559-Progno-GB,
there are no clear traces of a chart for the September 1559 Lunar
Eclipse. If Nostradamus is the author of Les Significations…,
it is logical to assume he calculated the chart with Mars in the tenth
house, squaring the Cauda Draconis. The elaboration of the impact of the
September 1559 Lunar Eclipse, however, contains incompatible data
regarding Mars, copied from Eclipsium omnium… These data are
incompatible with the chart, in which Mars is in the tenth house. The
question is if it is reasonable to assume that Nostradamus, after
calculating and quoting a chart with Mars in the tenth house, putted
this chart aside and simply translated and elaborated remarks in the Eclipsium
omnium…, without noticing their discrepancies with his own data.
This goes beyond all logic. It does not match with the assumed
time span between the completion of the 1559-Almanach-F and the
completion of Les Significations… is four months, provided the 1559-Almanach-F
was finished on April 27, 1558, as the faciebat in the 1559-Progno-GB
indicates. According to the 1559-Progno-GB, the prediction for
September 1559 is written in May 1558. If this is true, this reduces the
difference between the completion of the 1559-Almanach-F and Les
Significations… to three months. A period of three or four months
does not seem long enough to forget all about previously treated data
about Mars around the time of the Lunar Eclipse in the 1559-Almanach-F
and the 1559-Prono-F, especially not since the text of the praedictio
astrologica for 1559 was not copied, but translated from Latin into
French. It is almost impossible that during translation the
incompatibility of the contents of the praedictio astrologica for
1559 with data, which Nostradamus already treated in the 1559-Almanach-F
and the 1559-Prono-F, remained unnoticed.
general assumption is that in Les Significations…, Nostradamus
copied the praedictio astrologica for 1559 from Eclipsium
omnium… Gruber argues this by referring to Brind’Amour, who
scrutinized the letter to Cesar and named a number of source texts.
plagiarism does not necessarily point out who is the author of the book
which contains the copied lines. One should remember also that Les
Significations… is not a case of including the Latin text of the praedictio
astrologica for 1559, but a case of translating the Latin text into
is interesting to examine to what extent the contents of the praedictio
astrologica for 1559 and the Eclipsium omnium… in general
fit to the astrological facts in authentic Nostradamian texts.
to its bibliographical data, Eclipsium omnium… was completed on
March 27, 1556. The privilege was granted on June 25, 1556. It is only
after June 25, 1556, that Nostradamus could have laid hands on Eclipsium
next table contains some Eclipse data, given by Leovitius and
and Nostradamus both count from noon (12:00) to noon. For example, the
Solar Eclipse of November 1, 1556, actually occurred on November 2, etc.
differences between the time moments is caused by the fact that
Leovitius calculated charts for the meridian of Augsburg, Bavaria,
whereas Nostradamus probably copied time moments from Italian
gives lunar longitudes at the time of an Eclipse, with an accuracy of
seconds of arc. Nostradamus gives noon lunar longitudes, with an
accuracy of minutes of arc.
three cases, Nostradamus comes to a different classification than
Leovitius. He classifies the November 1556 Solar Eclipse as a New Moon,
the November 1556 Lunar Eclipse as a Full Moon and the April 1558 Solar
Eclipse as a New Moon.
table clearly shows that Nostradamus did not copy Eclipse data from Eclipsium
omnium…In his brief essay about the way Nostradamus applied
astrology, Brind’Amour in his turn did not mention data in Eclipsium
omnium… as source data regarding Eclipses in 1566.
page in Eclipsium omnium… on which the chapter regarding the
September 1559 Lunar Eclipse begins, opens with the headline of the
predictions, based on the April 1558 Solar Eclipse:
ASTROLOGICA AD ANNUM domini 1559.sub cuius tempore effectus eclipsis
Solaris graffabuntur, quae anno domini 1558.die18. Aprilis fiet.
In the 1558-Prono-F,
Nostradamus classifies this April 1558 Solar Eclipse as an ordinary New
Moon. In the predictions for September 1559 in the 1559-Progno-GB,
he reflects on what happened during the April 2 1558 Lunar Eclipse. In
the 1559-Progno-GB, there is no reflection on the impact of the
April 18 1558 Solar Eclipse.
Gruber reports that in
the 1561-Almanach-F, Nostradamus refers to previous equinoctial
eclipses. This is correct, since Nostradamus treated the April 1558
Lunar Eclipse (Sun: 23 Aries, Moon, 23 Libra), the September 1559 Lunar
Eclipse (Sun: 3 Libra, Moon: 3 Aries) and the March 1560 Lunar Eclipse
(Sun: 2 Aries, Moon: 2 Libra). This clearly shows that Nostradamus knew
what he was talking about and knew the data, which he used in the past
If Nostradamus had Eclipsium
omnium… at his disposal in 1558, he surely would have noticed that
the page, from which he translated, contained a full prediction for an
April 1558 Solar Eclipse which he had not discussed while writing his
predictions for 1558. He also did not reflect on this Eclipse while
writing his predictions for 1559. It would have been very easy for his
critics to launch a renewed attack if they found out that parts of Les
Significations… were translated from Eclipsium omnium…They
could show easily that at least three Eclipses, treated by Leovitius,
were not treated by Nostradamus, especially the April 1558 Solar
Eclipse. In other words, using Eclipsium omnium… as a package
for a reply to his critics, would not help Nostradamus to refute their
findings. On the contrary, these critics instantly would have new
arguments to disqualify Nostradamus as an astrologer.
role of De Chavigny
the 1559-Almanach-F and the 1559-Prono-F, a time span of
21 months is discussed. Gruber, who attributes this time span to
Nostradamus, says that it was Nostradamus who invented it, not De
Chavigny. This, however, does not mean automatically that De Chavigny is
not involved in the compilation of Les Significations…
explained in one of my articles about the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse, a
couple of quotations from Les Significations… in the 1559-Commentaires
are not according to the French translation as published in Les
Significations…, but according to a literal translation of the
Latin text in the praedictio astrologica for 1559. This might
mean that De Chavigny had a copy of Eclipsium omnium… at his
typical De Chavigny feature is the abbreviation H.T.H.N.S.
Next, De Chavigny was
preoccupied with proving in every possible way that Nostradamus
predicted the circumstances of the decease of Henry II in July 1559. In
the Brief Discours…, the biographical part of Ianus Gallicus,
it is only this event only to which De Chavigny alludes. The decease of
Henry II and the decease of Francis II are interpreted by De Chavigny
as an omen of the religious wars which would start in 1562. The
September 1559 Lunar Eclipse is a classical symbol for such events. It
is not impossible that De Chavigny partially revised the astrological
contents of Les Significations…, related to the predictions,
meaning he translated and elaborated the i.e. added and elaborated the praedictio
astrologica for 1559.
Significations…is supposed to be
completed on August 14, 1558, shortly after the completion of the 1559-Almanach-F
and the 1559-Prono-F. On the one hand, it is presented as an
elaboration of predictions regarding the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse,
discussed in both the 1559-Almanach-F and the 1559-Prono-F.
On the other hand, it also contains a reply to detractors, especially to
Hercules le François.
It was Torné-Chavigny
who first discovered that parts of Leovitius’ Eclipsium omnium…
were included in Les Significations..., i.e. the praedictio
astrologica for 1559. It has been
said that Nostradamus used the praedictio astrologica for 1559 as
a kind of wrapping of a reply to his critics and it has been assumed
that he acted like this, in order to have his rejoinder published as
soon as possible.
this article, the compatibility of the astrological contents of Les
Significations… with other Nostradamian publications has been
verified. The results can be listed as follows:
The reliability of the impact period of the September 1559 Lunar
Eclipse remains questionable, even in the case of the 1559-Almanach-F
and the 1559-Prono-F. Chances are that the September 1559 Lunar
Eclipse is the first case in the series of Eclipses, treated by
Nostradamus, in which there is a serious deviation of the impact period,
compared with Ptolemy’s time determination system. If this possibility
is confirmed by further investigation, the supposed length of the impact
period is highly suspect.
Significations…, the impact period of the September 1559 Lunar
Eclipse is 21 months, whereas in the 1559-Almanach-F and the 1559-Prono-F
there are also many references to Ptolemy’s time determination system.
It is not clear why Nostradamus, if he is the author of Les
Significations…, did not revise the 1559-Almanach-F and the
1559-Prono-F regarding this matter. According to the
bibliographical data, all three books were completed close enough to
each other to enforce a rectification. Since Les Significations…
is supposed to be a reply to critics, such a rectification would have
been normal and inevitable. Otherwise, any critic would have a new
reason to disqualify Nostradamus as an astrologer: inconsistent time
spans in the case of one subject.
In Les Significations…, two incompatible charts are at
stake. The introductory lines in Les Significations… refer to a
chart of the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse, in which Mars is in the tenth
house, in square with the Cauda Draconis. These data are confirmed by
software-data. In the second chart, originally calculated by Leovitius,
Mars is presented as being in the eighth house, close to Antares. These
charts are not compatible.
is possible that Nostradamus made a chart for the Eclipse with Mars in
the tenth house, in square with the Cauda Draconis. But a few lines
later, he would have dropped this chart in favour of remarks, copied
from Leovitius praedictio astrologica for 1559. The simultaneous
use of these incompatible sources has been characterized as a feature of
Nostradamus’ way of practicing astrology. The presented material in
this article, however, shows something else. In the 1559-Progno-GB
and the 1559-Prono-F, Mars is presented correctly around the time
of the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse. In the 1561-Almanach-F,
Nostradamus correctly referred to the three previous equinoctial
eclipses he treated in the past. The praedictio astrologica for 1559
is written in Latin; in Les Significations… it was translated
into French. Nostradamus, supposed he is the author of Les
Significations…, impossibly could have overlooked the incompatible
data regarding Mars, which he treated correctly a couple of months
before the writing of Les Significations…
Regarding the use of Eclipsium omnium…: the differences
in Eclipse data (time, lunar longitude) imply that Nostradamus did not
copy these data from Eclipsium omnium…The page in Eclipsium
omnium, which contains the predictions for the September 1559 Lunar
Eclipse, opens with the predictions for the April 1558 Solar Eclipse, an
Eclipse which Nostradamus did not discuss at all.
The results of these
comparisons show that many irrational elements are present: different
time spans, incompatible charts, the presence of a book (Eclipsium
omnium…), which contents are not helpful in defending Nostradamus
to his critics, rectifications that were not done (but necessary) and a
time span, suspect because of its matching with history.
findings make the authentic character of Les Significations…
highly questionable. There is a chart with Mars in the tenth house,
which might very well be authentic, although there are no traces in the 1559-Progno-GB
and the 1559-Commentaires of an Eclipse chart, made by
Nostradamus. The reply to critics might also very well be authentic.
This leaves the translation and inclusion of the praedictio
astrologica for 1559. It looks as if someone has decided to replace
the original explanation, based on the chart with Mars in the tenth
house, by the praedictio astrologica for 1559, without realizing
the incompatibility of two charts.
these findings support the ideas of dr. Halbronn regarding the
compilation of Les Significations…
Meern, the Netherlands, November
updated on January 28, 2009
The titles, places and
year of issue of the mentioned authors are listed in the bibliography.
The Significance of Les Significations: Authentic Nostradamian Text or
Van Berkel: Astrological traces of forgery in “Les Significations de
l’Eclipse du 16 Septembre 1559, http://ramkat.free.fr/nberk7.html
and Les Significations de l’Eclipse: its origin, its disqualification
abbreviations of titles contain: (1) the year, (2) the kind
of predictions (Almanach; Prono = Pronostication; Progno
= Prognostication; Commentaires = book 1-4 of the Recueil des Présages
Prosaïques (RPP); (3) the country of issue (F
= France, GB = England). The 1559-Progno-GB
is a translation of the predictions for each month in the 1559-Almanach-F.
The 1559-Almanacke-GB and the 1559-Progno-GB are
translated from the 1559-Almanach-F. The 1559-Progno-GB is
not the translation of the 1559-Prono-F, despite the word
“prognostication” in the title.
p.264. This part of the 1556-Commentaires deals with the 1556-Almanach-F.
p.267. This part of the 1556-Commentaires deals with the 1556-Prono-F.
p.428. See also Ptolemy, p.91. [text]
Berkel: “Les Significations de l’Eclipse: its origin, its
La fortune des emprunts à Leovitius dans les deux êpitres
Nostradamiques de 1558. http://ramkat.free.fr/nhalb25.html