Videl in Declaration des abus ignorances et seditions de
Michel Nostradamus (1558 )
... Regarde Michel ie te prye si tu es encores plus
ignare & gros asne que ie ne dis la pleine lune que tu as
mis en tes presages du moys de Ianuier de lan 1557.tu dis la
lune estre à 37.degrez & 46.minutes de cancer: qu'est ce
que tu dis grosse beste le soleil est en aquarius & la
lune opposite seroit en cancer, qui t'a apris que cancer soit
opposite a aquarius: vn qui n'aurait iamais veu liure
d'astrologie scauroit il faire plus grand erreur que tu fais,
n'est tu pas bien sot si tu n'entens que leo est opposite a
aquarius, & non cancer, car il est opposite a capricorne,
n'est ce pas l'a.b.c. des principes que l'on aprend en
The way Nostradamus practiced astrology was
criticized in his lifetime.
In November 1557, his countryman Laurens Videl achieved Declaration
des abus ignorances et seditions de Michel Nostradamus, a booklet
which, according to the rest of the title, would be useful for anyone.
Videl criticizes both the contents of Nostradamus' predictions and his
astrological-technical skills. He bases himself upon investigation of
a number of Almanachs.
Videl mentions, for example, that Nostradamus in the description of the
solar ingress in one of the cardinal signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra,
Capricorn) gives erroneous longitudes of the Sun; notes the time moments
of planetary positions in an odd way, makes mistakes while determining
aspects and special circumstances (such as "combust") and
gives erroneous longitudes of the Moon while discussing lunar phases. In
the quotation, given at the top, he mentions that according to
Nostradamus, the zodiacal longitude of the Moon during the Full Moon in
January 1557 is 37:46 Cancer, while the Sun is in Aquarius and in
astrology it is not the sign of Cancer which is diametrically opposed to
Aquarius, but the sign of Leo. According to Videl, this shows that
Nostradamus is not at all familiar with the fundamental principles of
des principes que l'on aprend en astrologie).
Likewise, the deceased Canadian professor Brind'Amour concluded in 1993,
after thorough investigation, that the astrological-technical skills of
Nostradamus were quite poor.
the investigation upon which Nostradamus, astrology and the Bible
is based, a number of Almanachs and Pronostications were
examined by means of application of present-day software. Also,
horoscopes were examined, which are part of the leftover correspondence
of Nostradamus. The findings of these examinations were compared with
the findings of Brind'Amour and Videl. They point towards the same direction.
However, some errors and anomalies cannot be attributed to Nostradamus.
These are printer's errors or errors, made by others who introduced
texts or tables. It became also clear that some findings can be
A more or less
casual critic of Videl was that Nostradamus noted for example March 1,
1557, 03:47, as February 28, 1557, 15:47. In Nostradamus' lifetime, this
way of notation was not unusual and had a good reason. In ephemeredes,
made in that era, the day ran from 12:00 to 12:00 instead of from
midnight to midnight. Because of a correct interpolation, this way of
notation is quite useful. A time moment like 15:47 can be divided by 24
without any extra conversion, whereas one has to add 12 hours to 03:47
a.m. before dividing the result by 24.
This way of mentioning data, in which the day runs from 12:00 to 12:00,
has also consequences for the name of the day. The birth data of Hieronymus Purpurati
(Jérôme Purpurat), one of Nostradamus' clients, are: An Chris M.D.XVII, D
Mercurius, XIX augusti, h.XVI, m.XV PM, which is: 1517 A.D., Wednesday,
August 19, 16:15 p.m., with the day running from 12:00 to 12:00.
According to present-day standards, with the day running from midnight
to midnight, this is Thursday, August 20, 1517, 04:15.
Nostradamus was not the only astrologer who counted from 12:00 to 12:00.
omnium 1554-1606, which contains predictions for a series of Solar
and Lunar Eclipses which occur between 1554 and 1606, Cyprianus
Leovitius, the author, also counted from 12:00 to 12:00. According to
dr. Patrice Guinard's transcript of the Prognostication nouuelle,
& prediction portenteuse, pour Lan M.D.LV. Composee par maistre
Michel Nostradamus (on this website: the 1555-Prono-F), it
was described on the last page that the day began at noon and ended at
noon the next day.
Videl used his critic upon this way of notation as an upbeat for
discussing the way Nostradamus dealt with lunar phases. He was right in
criticizing the way Nostradamus dealt with lunar phases, but there is no
reason to criticize the way of noting date or time.
In the fragment, taken from Declaration des abus..., Videl
mentions that in "predictions for January 1557", the zodiacal
longitude of the Moon during the Full Moon is 37:46 Cancer. According to
Videl, this shows that Nostradamus does not have basic skills, in this
case, skills regarding the sequence of the zodiacal signs. The text of
the discussion of the lunar phases in the 1557-Prono-F invites to
a further investigation.
the discussion of the lunar phases in January 1557 in the 1557-Prono-F, it reads that on January 14, 1557, there will be a Full Moon on
12:57 on 27:47 (!) Cancer.
According to software, the Moon's zodiacal longitude on January 14,
1557, noon True Local Time Venice, was 27:04 Cancer. In the 1557-Prono-F,
Nostradamus mentioned the Moon's noon longitude, copied from an
ephemeris which was probably calculated for noon TLT Venice.
The question is to which publication Videl refers: the 1557-Almanach-F
or the 1557-Présages Merveilleux-F. One of these publications
might contain a printer's error: 37:46 Cancer, whereas the 1557-Prono-F
reads: 27:47 Cancer. Or does it read 27:46 Cancer in the 1557-Almanach-F
or the 1557-Presages Merveilleux-F? In that case, there might be
a printer's error in Déclaration des abus..., meaning that
instead of 27:46, 37:46 was printed. Then, there is the possibility that
Videl himself wrote 37:46. The most obvious possibility is that the
printer's error 37:46 instead of 27:46 occurs in Déclaration des
abus... If the original longitude in the 1557-Almanach-F or
the 1557-Presages Merveilleux-F would have been 37:46, Videl
would have been the first to explain that a zodiacal sign consists of
exactly 30 degrees of arc.
these lines, Videl did not discuss the impact of the sign of Cancer on
the contents of the prediction for the Full Moon in January 1557. This
impact is disastrous.
In the discussion of the impact of lunar phases (New Moon, First
Quarter, Full Moon and Last Quarter), Nostradamus often mentioned the
time moment of the exact lunar phase. He copied these time moments from
ephemeredes, for example an ephemeris, calculated for noon TLT Venice.
This copying of time moments, listed in ephemeredes, is a usual
procedure, practiced by many astrologers, also today. The extensive
version of Neil F. Michelsen's American Ephemeriscontains
aspect-tables with GMT-moments of aspects and lunar phases. If one wants
to copy these time moments, one has to specify that they are based upon
GMT, or one has to convert these moments into moments, based upon local
Nostradamus does not take any of these measures. He does not specify that
the time moments are based upon a different time standard than TLT
Salon-de-Provence and does not convert the time moments into TLT
Nothing is wrong so far, but the lunar longitudes, mentioned in the
discussion of the lunar phases, are not the longitudes during the moment
the lunar phase is exact, but the noon longitudes, given in the
ephemeris. These noon longitudes are the fundament of the predictions,
based upon lunar phases. Such an approach results in mistakes if the
Moon during the exact lunar phase is in another zodiacal sign than in
the one at noon.
In the 1557-Prono-F, it reads that in January 1557 there is
a Full Moon on January 14, 12:57. The given lunar longitude: 27:47
Cancer. This is not the Moon's longitude during the exact lunar phase,
but the noon longitude on January 14 (noon TLT Venice).
The specification in the 1557-Prono-F must be read as Full Moon
on January 15, 1557, 0:57 TLT Venice. According to software, the solar longitude
at that moment is 4:52 Aquarius and the lunar longitude
The prediction in the 1557-Prono-F
is not based upon the Moon in Leo, but upon the noon longitude of the
Moon in Cancer: "Full Moon 12:57 on 27:42 Cancer, which because of
its water-ness will be humid, with a couple of moderations..."
The word "water-ness" is used because Cancer belongs to the
water-signs of the Zodiac.
Summary: the 1557-Prono-F contains a prediction for the Full
Moon of January 14, 1557, based upon a Moon longitude in Cancer. It must
be noted that this is the noon longitude (TLT Venice) instead of the
longitude during the exact Full Moon. Further, it must be noticed that
the exact Full Moon does not occur in Cancer, but in Leo. The prediction
was based upon explanation of a longitude in Cancer, whereas it should
have been based upon a longitude in Leo. Thus, this is a wrong
prediction, caused by copying longitudes from ephemeredes instead of an
interpolation fo the Moon's longitude.
In the remaining predictions, based upon lunar phases, this kind of
error occurs regularly.
in Nostradamus' correspondence
A part of the
correspondence of Nostradamus has been preserved and has been published
by Jean Dupèbe in 1983. This publication is entitled: Nostradamus - Lettres inédites
and contains 54 letters, written in the period February 1556 - December
1565. Twelve of these letters are written by Nostradamus, 42 are
addressed to him.
51 of these letters are in Latin. Dupèbe summarized each Latin letter
in French and annotated all of these letters. Nostradamus
inédites also contains horoscope data (naam, birthdata, hour of
birth, altitude), but not a single chart is depicted.
Bernadette Lecureux translated the 51 letters in French. This
translation is, together with the remaining three French letters,
published in Amadou's L'astrologie de Nostradamus - dossier (1992 ).
This book also contains reproductions of 15 original charts which are
part of the correspondence, transcripts of these figures, made by Robert
Morin and charts, based upon recalculations by "Méridien
Insofar solar charts are discussed in the letters, these charts are
recalculated by "Méridien Informatique". Next, this part of L'astrologie de Nostradamus - dossier
contains reproductions of horoscope figures and texts by Cyprianus
The text of the letter to the canons of the Orange cathedral, together
with the chart, is dated on February 4, 1562. It is not included in Nostradamus - Lettres inédites,
but it is included in L'astrologie de Nostradamus
Brind'Amour concluded, regarding the charts, calculated by Nostradamus
and discussed by him in his letters, that they contained three
characteristic kinds of errors. The
first category is that the planets are not always located in the proper
houses. The second category is that the longitude of the Sun and the MC
does not fit with the time moment for which the chart was calculated.
According to Brind'Amour, Nostradamus did not interpolate, but took the
most close Sidereal Time and copied the cusp longitudes, listed for that
time. The third category is that the planetary longitudes are not the
longitudes at the time of the horoscope, but the noon longitudes, listed
in the ephemeredes. He copied these noon longitudes, a method which also
can be seen in Almanachs and Pronostications.
Brind'Amour notices that in his letters, Nostradamus writes that he uses
several systems of house division, among which the Regiomontanus system
of house division. However, in all charts, the cusp longitudes are based
upon the Regiomontanus system of house division.
As a possible explanation for the phenomenon of wrong house positions,
Brind'Amour suggested that, due to preparation of the correspondence for
publishing, in all charts which contained other systems of house
division, the cusps of these houses were replaced by cusps, based upon
the Regiomontanus system of house division, in order to standardize the
charts. In a number of cases, such a revision should have resulted in
different house positions for some planets. According to the hypothesis
of Brind'Amour, the charts were only partly revised, i.e. all planets
remained in the houses in which they were located originally. This might
be a cause for wrong house positions.
It is an open question who did this revision. Brind'Amour writes:
"perhaps one recalculated the house cusps according to the
Regiomontanus system of house division, while the planets remained in
the same houses they were located in originally."
With this remark, he closes the discussion of the first category of
errors and begins to discuss the second category: copying
cusp-longitudes from tables of houses, based upon the most close
In his introduction to the letters, Dupèbe also mentions preparations
because of publishing in the future. In fact, he writes that the
collection consists of calligraphed revised versions, made in the second
half of the 16th century. This collection was handed over by Cesar,
Nostradamus' eldest son, in 1629. For centuries, this collection was
considered to be lost, until the Frenchman Lhez found it in 1961.
a result of the possibility raised by Brind'Amour, first, one should
determine which charts are authentic, i.e. calculated, drawn and/or
revised by Nostradamus in the way Brind'Amour described, and which
charts (in the second half of the 16th century or later) were revised by
others. In the case of the charts which are revised by others, neither
the first category of errors (planets in the wrong houses), nor the
second category (copied longitudes of the cusps instead of accurately
interpolated longitudes) can be attributed to Nostradamus. He who
replaced the cusp longitudes of the 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 6th, 8th, 9th, 11th
and 12th house by longitudes, based upon the Regiomontanus system of
house division, could have done that easily by copying from tables of
houses, by relying on the closest listing of the MC and the Ascendant.
Systems of house division differ from each other because of the
cusp-longitudes of the 2nd, 3rd, 5th, 6th, 8th, 9th, 11th and 12th
house. Ascendant and MC are identical in each system of house division.
An answer to the question which charts were calculated, drawn and/or
revised by Nostradamus, is also important because of a remark he made in
a letter to Lorenz Tubbe, dated on May 13, 1562.
He writes that he calculated Rosenberger's solar chart for 1562,
recalculated his birth chart and wrote comments by himself. His
secretaries however, too occupied, had not yet time to copy this. This
copying was necessary because it was difficult to read Nostradamus'
handwriting. The question is if the only task of the secretaries was to
copy the letter, or if it was also their task to copy the charts.
Mistakes are easily made during copying a chart.
quarterchart for spring 1558
On a certain moment, Nostradamus sent two series of predictions to Jean
Brotot, a Lyonese publisher. One of them contained a dedication,
directed to the governor of the Provence; the other one contained a
dedication, directed to Joseph des Panisses, prevost of Cavaillon, to
whom the Prognostication
nouvelle et prédiction portenteuse pour l'an M.D.L.V (de 1555-Prono-F)
Brotot's answer dates from the day after receiving these series of
predictions and is dated in the literature on September 20, 1557. This
letter shows that Brotot considered Nostradamus' phrasings too
extensive. The time demanded brief descriptions and the average reader
would not appreciate two series of predictions, based upon one and the
same source. Therefore, Brotot wrote Nostradamus that for the moment he
only wanted one series of predictions (it was up to Nostradamus to
decide which one), to which he would add useful things of the other
In the end, Brotot would publish both of them and would direct the
dedicacy to both the governor of the Provence and the prevost of
Cavaillon. Further, he would complete tables, meant for "the
Bourguignons", with saint days, lunar phases and their meanings,
quatrains and French texts.
Probably, Brotot's letter deals with two series predictions for 1555:
the Almanach pour 1555 and the Prognostication
nouvelle et prédiction portenteuse pour l'an M.D.L.V (de 1555-Prono-F),
transcripted by dr. Patrice Guinard.
Brotot's letter shows that Nostradamus was not the compiler of the
of the items which is discussed in the 1558-Prono-F, are the
quartercharts for spring, summer, autumn and winter. In the first lines
of the discussion of the quarterchart for spring 1558, the astrological
data read as follows:
date of the quarterchart: March 11, 1558;
solar longitude on March 11, 1558: 0:53 Aries;
lunar longitude on March 11, 1558: 16:40 Leo;
location of Mars on March 11, 1558: Aries;
Sun-Jupiter conjunction and a Moon-Caput Draconis conjunction on
December 29, 1557;
Mars-Saturn conjunction, in the preceding general description of
1558 dated on April 1, 1558;
Lunar Eclipse, in the next paragraphs dated on April 2, 1558, 12:32.
show as follows:
December 29, 1557,
12:00 TLT Venice: Sun: 17:48 Capricorn, Jupiter: 19:15 Capricorn;
Moon: 24:32 Aries, Caput Draconis: 3:25 Taurus;
11, 1558: 12:00 TLT Venice: Sun: 0:17 Ariers, Moon: 23:41
Sagittarius, Mars: 25:35 Aries;
1, 1558: 12:00 TLT Venice: Mars: 10:47 Taurus, Saturn: 9:09 Taurus;
3, 1558, 0:27 TLT Venice: Sun: 22:25 Aries; Moon: 22:25 Libra, Caput
Draconis: 28:25 Aries.
time moment of the quarterchart for spring 1558 is not given. According
to software, the text deals with longitudes on March 11, 1558, 12:00 TLT
Venice. Nostradamus did not calculate what time it would be in
Salon-de-Provence if the Sun would arrive on 0:00 Aries on March 11,
The astrological data in the text of the discussion of the quarterchart
for spring 1558, December 29, 1557 and April 1 and 2, 1558, match pretty
good with software. In fact, the data of the Lunar Eclipse match almost
perfectly. Nostradamus counted the day from 12:00 to 12:00. April 2,
1558, 12:32, is in fact April 3, 1558, 0:32. According to software, the
Lunar Eclipse occurred on April 3, 1558, 0:27 TLT Venice.
According to the text of the quarterchart, the zodiacal longitude of the
Moon on March 11, 1558, is 16:40 Leo. According to software, the
zodiacal longitude of the Moon on March 11, 1558, 12:00 TLT Venice is
23:41 Sagittarius. A few lines further, in the discussion of the lunar
phases, it reads that on March 11, a Last Quarter occurs, 14 minutes
above the Equinox, with the Moon on 23:18 Sagittarius.
This is not correct. According to software, the Moon's longitude at the
time of the Last Quarter is 2 Capricorn. The given lunar longitude
matches softwaredata, calculated for March 11, 1558, 12:00 TLT Venice:
In the 1558-Prono-F, there are two different lunar longitudes
(Leo and Sagittarius) for one date, March 11, 1558. One can explain this
as a clear example of the lack of skills of Nostradamus. However, the
case seems to be more complicated.
The date of the quarterchart for spring 1557, discussed in the 1557-Prono-F,
is March 11, as is the date of the quarterchart for spring 1558.
According to the text, the zodiacal longitude of the Sun in the
quarterchart for spring 1557 is 0:53 Aries, as in the quarterchart for
In the 1557-Prono-F, neither the lunar sign, nor the lunar
longitude is given in the text of the quarterchart for spring 1557. In
the discussion of the lunar phases in March 1557, it reads that a First
Quarter occurs on March 7, 1557 (Moon in Gemini) and a Full Moon on
March 14 (Moon in Virgo).
Between March 7 and March 14, the Moon is in Leo during a couple of
days. According to software, the zodiacal longitude of the Moon on March
11, 1557, 12:00 TLT Venice, was: 16:04 Leo.
In the 1558-Prono-F, the date of the quarterchart for spring 1558
is March 11. Two aspects, occurring on December 29, 1557, Mars in Aries
on March 11, 1558, and subsequent aspects on April 1 and 2 (a
Mars-Saturn conjunction and a Lunar Eclipse) are correctly described.
The only fact which is not correct, is the noon longitude of the Moon on
March 11, 1558 (16:40 Leo instead of 23:41 Sagittarius), though this
longitude is given correctly in the discussion of the lunar phases on
March 11, 1558, but one should note that this longitude is the noon
longitude instead of the exact longitude during the Last Quarter.
In the text of the 1557-Prono-F, the date of the quarterchart is
March 11, as in the text of the 1558-Prono-F. In both texts, the
zodiacal longitude of the Sun is 0:53 Aries. According to software, the
noon position of the Moon in the quarterchart for spring 1557 is 16:04
Leo, which matches almost perfectly the given longitude (16:40 Leo) in
the text of the quarterchart for spring 1558.
These facts show that 16:40 Leo instead of 23:41 Sagittarius is not by
definition the expectable example of a blunder during reading the
ephemeris, characteristic for Nostradamus. Numerous surrounding data are
given correctly. It looks as if one or two data, dealing with March 11,
1557, ended up in a text, dealing with March 11, 1558, a text which had
the same subject (spring) as the text which dealt with 1557. Brotot had
written to Nostradamus that it was his intention to first publish one
series of predictions, to which he would add "useful pieces"
of the other series. The question rises if his revision was restricted
to what he proposed, or if he made other changes in the text.
Solar Eclipse of April 18, 1558
Several times in
the 1558-Prono-F, Nostradamus discussed the Lunar Eclipse which
was to occur on April 2, 12:32.
He did not discuss the Solar Eclipse of April 18, 1558, in terms of a
Solar Eclipse, but as an ordinary New Moon.
In Eclipsium omnium... 1554-1606, Leovitius classified this lunar
phase as a Solar Eclipse and dealt with it as such.
In the 1559-Progno-GB, Nostradamus reflected on the April 1558
Lunar Eclipse, but not on the April 1558 Solar Eclipse.
For several reasons, the fact that Nostradamus twice did not discuss a
Solar Eclipse, is interesting. These reasons are related to the
conditions to discuss a Solar Eclipse as such and with the periods in
which the 1558-Prono-F and the 1559-Progno-GB are written.
In each year, there are two Solar Eclipses and at least three Lunar
Eclipses. From an astrological point of view, a Solar or Lunar Eclipse
is a New or Full Moon, close to the axis Caput - Cauda Draconis, with an
orb of about ten degrees of arc.
In Eclipsium omnium..., Leovitius discussed those Eclipses,
during which the eclipsed Sun or the eclipsed Moon on any moment were
above the Ascendant - Descendant axis for the latitude of Augsburg. For
this reason, he writes that no Eclipses will be visible in 1606, which
means that he will not give any prediction, based on an Eclipse in that
year. The Solar Eclipse of April 18, 1558, was in the ninth house of the
Eclipse chart, calculated for Augsburg, and was discussed.
During the examination of the authenticity of Les Significations
de l'Eclipse du 16 septembre 1559, it became clear that Nostradamus
did not copy Eclipse data from Eclipsium omnium..., but from
ephemeredes. Not only does he classify the Solar Eclipse of April 18,
1558, as an ordinary New Moon, but also the Solar Eclipse of November
1556. The subsequent Lunar Eclipse of November 1556 was classified as an
ordinary Full Moon.
dedication of the 1558-Prono-F is dated on May 1, 1557. Around
May 1, 1557, Nostradamus wrote predictions for the April 1558 Lunar
Eclipse. He did not write predictions for a subsequent April 1558 Solar
Eclipse, on the contrary. Next to this Lunar Eclipse is a New Moon.
In the 1559-Progno-GB, Nostradamus looks back on the April 1558
Lunar Eclipse, while writing about the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse.
According to bibliographical data in the 1559-Progno-GB, this was
written in May 1558, i.e. shortly after the April 1558 Lunar Eclipse.
In 1556, Leovitius expected that there would also be a Solar Eclipse in
April 1558. In 1557, however, Nostradamus discusses a New Moon for April
1558 and - naturally - does not look back on that phenomenon.
There are two possibilities. Either Nostradamus suppresses the fact that
a Solar Eclipse occurred in April 1558, or the Solar Eclipse was not
visible. NASA-tables show that the April 1558 Solar Eclipse was not
visible for Europe.
In the ephemeredes Nostradamus used, the Solar Eclipse of April 18,
1558, was classified as an ordinary New Moon. This is not correct, given
the fact that this New Moon occurred close to the axis Caput - Cauda
Draconis. However, this Eclipse was not visible for Europe, which meant
that Nostradamus did not get into trouble because of not mentioning a
authenticity of Les Significations de l'Eclipse du 16 septembre
According to the general opinion, Nostradamus wrapped a reply to his
critics in a prediction for the September 1559 Lunar Eclipse, translated
from Leovitius' Eclipsium omnium...
In the first lines of Les Significations..., a chart of the
September 1559 Lunar Eclipse is mentioned. In this chart, Mars is in the
tenth house, in square with the Cauda Draconis. In the chart of the
Eclipse, drawn and discussed by Leovitius, Mars is in the eighth house,
close to Antares, a Fixed Star. This points to the presence of two
The author of this article has the opinion that the presence in one book
of two series of conflicting chart data, does not point by definition to
the way in which Nostradamus practiced astrology. The predictions for
September and October 1559 in the 1559-Progno-GB clearly show
that, according to the ephemeredes which were used by Nostradamus, Mars
was in Capricorn. He discussed this with such a frequency, that it is
very unlikely that shortly afterwards, he introduced two changes: a
change in sign and a change in house position.
The differences between the time data and the listing of Solar and Lunar
Eclipses in the books by Nostradamus and those by Leovitius are that
many, that one can doubt seriously if Nostradamus in 1558, the year in
which he is supposed to have written Les Significations..., had a
copy of Eclipsium omnium... at his disposal.
of the Almanach pour 1559
investigation upon which Nostradamus, astrology and the Bible is
based, two English versions of the Almanach pour 1559 were
One of them, the Almanacke
for the yeare of our Lorde God, 1559 (the 1559-Almanacke-GB),
contains the lunar calendars with a.o., lunar phases and quatrains. The
other, the Prognostication of
maister Michael Nostredamus, Doctour in Phisick. In Province for the
yeare of our Lorde, 1559 (the 1559-Progno-GB) contains a
translation of the predictions which are based upon lunar phases,
astrological aspects and quartercharts.
In a number of cases, the time moments of lunar phases in the 1559-Almanacke-GB
differ from those in the 1559-Progno-GB. Or: the time moments in
the tables differ from those in the text of the predictions. The
suggestions, made by Brotot in his letter of September 20, 1557, might
mean that these tables were not compiled by Nostradamus, but added by
the publisher, and that Nostradamus based his predictions upon
It is not professional that in one book (the 1559-Almanach-F,
split into the 1559-Almanacke-GB
and the 1559-Progno-GB), the time moments of lunar phases are not
identical. However, it looks as if the tables had a more decorative
functions, as a result of the compilation of almanacs, en that
Nostradamus, as explained, did not use these tables, but ephemeredes.
A comparison between the contents of the 1559-Progno-GB with
software data and data in book 4, part 1 of the Recueil
des Présages Prosaïques, showed that the 1559-Progno-GB
seriously lacks quality. There were ten lunar phases discussed in the
prediction for January 1559, whereas the normal frequency is four or
five. This is caused by the fact that the text of predictions, based
upon lunar phases in August and December, ended up in the chapter which
deals with January.
Some lines in the 1559-Progno-GB differ from the original
astrological context in the French source text, apparently with the aim
to maintain the text which was already translated. This points to a
deliberate attempt of the translator and/or the editor to suppress
mistakes which occurred during translating and/or layouting.
chart theft sacred objects, Orange, February 1562
The letter which
Nostradamus wrote to the canons of the Orange cathedral about a theft in
1561, is dated on February 4, 1562. This letter is accompanied by a
chart, dated on February 3, 1562, "hora 7 post
In the chart, the number 7 is scarcely readable. In fact, it looks like
a 4. The way in which the 7 is printed, raises the idea that it was
added later. Other numbers in the chart are also scarcely readable.
In the investigation upon which Nostradamus, astrology and the Bible is
based, the first step during examining this chart was the deduction of
the Sidereal Time from the longitudes of the MC and the Ascendant. The
Sidereal Time: 4:20:39. The longitudes of the MC and the Ascendant
matched with the coordinates of Salon-de-Provence. The TLT-moment for
Salon-de-Provence turned out to be: 18:47:53. In other words, the
scarcely readable number which follows the word "hora" is the
number 7 and the difference between "hora 7 post meridiem"
(19:00) and software data (18:47:53) turns out to be 12 minutes and 7
seconds. Unfortunately, the number of errors in the chart is that many,
that it can not be derived if the planetary longitudes were those of
February 3, 1562, noon, or those of February 3, 1562, 18:47:53 TLT
Salon-de-Provence. According to software, the noon lunar longitude on
February 3, 1562 (TLT Venice) is 21:04 Aquarius. The chart reads: 3
The chart of the theft is also discussed by Amadou, Brind'Amour and
Amadou depicted three charts: the original one, a transcript and a
recalculated one for February 3, 1562, 16:00 TLT Salon-de-Provence.
Amadou read the 7 as a 4 and does not discuss the question why in the
original chart the house cusps have longitudes the way they have them.
He presents a recalculated chart, based upon 16:00 TLT
Salon-de-Provence, in which for example the MC is on 24:55 Aries,
whereas in the original chart, the MC was located on 7 Gemini.
Brind'Amour, such is listed in a survey, provided by Peter Lemesurier,
concluded that the given time of the chart was 155 minutes (2 hours and
35 minutes) too early, compared with the actual time of the chart.
Apparently, Brind'Amour also read the 7 as a 4 and in the end got the
result of 18:35. If he would have read the time moment as "hora 7
post meridiem", he might have concluded that this was only 25
minutes later than the actual time of the chart.
Leroy made a couple of mistakes while copying the chart: the date, the
time and the longitude of a cusp. If the reader of his book does not
know the original chart, he wrongly attributes these mistakes to
in the Almanach pour l'an M.D.LX.VI (the 1566-Almanach-F)
It has been said
that Nostradamus had too little knowledge of the astrological theory to
understand Videl's critics. Videl criticized for example the fact that
Nostradamus, while discussing the ingress of the Sun in Aries in 1557,
wrote that the longitude of the Sun was 0:53 Aries, whereas it should be
0:00 Aries, a way of dealing with ephemeris data which once again points
to copying them instead of interpolate them.
pour l'an M.D.L.X.VI (the 1566-Almanach-F) contains charts
for each of the four seasons, i.e. each solar ingress in a cardinal sign
(Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn). In each chart, the zodiacal longitude
of the Sun is 0:00. This longitude, and the longitude of the Moon, show
that these charts are the result of accurate interpolation. The
longitudes of the cusps match the chart data; it looks as if an
ephemeris for 12:00 TLT Venice is used and the charts seem to be
calculated for 46 degrees Northern Latitude.
The charts have not a merely decorative function, they are truly
analyzed, as is shown by the remark that in the quarterchart for winter
1566 Saturn is stationary. In the chart, Saturn is indeed labeled as
The question is if Nostradamus calculated these charts by himself or
copied them. Whatever the answer may be, he discussed quartercharts in
which the Sun had the correct zodiacal longitude: 0:00. Compared with
the 1557-Prono-F and the 1558-Prono-F, this might be
considered to be an improvement. However, data and times of lunar phases
and lunar longitudes contain the same errors as those in the 1557-Prono-F
and the 1558-Prono-F: noon-longitudes instead of longitudes
during the exact lunar phase and time moments which are neither
specified nor converted, but based upon 12:00 TLT Venice.
and limitations in the use of astrological software
verified the astrological data in Almanachs, Pronostications
and charts with ephemeredes, used by Nostradamus. Christian Wöllner,
the author of Das Mysterium des Nostradamus (1926), had to use
a.o. the Alfonsinian tables. The German Century-scholar Noll-Husum used a.o.
Schoch's Planetentafeln für Jedermann, added with the
In the beginning of the investigation upon which Nostradamus,
astrology and the Bible is based, the Tuckerman Ephemeris was used,
added with algorithms to calculate the Sidereal Time and the zodiacal
longitude of the Caput Draconis. Since a couple of years, the AstroScoop
Plus program is used (Schors publishers, Amsterdam, 1999).
some limitations, due to the nature of the research, the use of AstroScoop
Plus gives much satisfaction. The noon longitudes of Sun, Moon and
Caput Draconis and the time moments of the lunar phases, given in the
text of Almanachs and Pronostications, match pretty well with AstroScoop
Plus. This made it possible to correct quickly the errors in the 1559-Progno-GB.
The difference in planetary longitudes between the ephemeredes of
Nostradamus' age and AstroScoop Plus is sometimes two degrees of
arc. There can be a difference of about two days in the date on which a
planet changes its direction (direct into retrograde or vice versa). One
must keep this in mind if one wants to compare astrological data in Almanachs, Pronostications
and correspondence with those of AstroScoop Plus, which then
result into a trend instead of in a reflection of what was calculated
long time ago. However, such a trend can be very revealing, such as in
the case of Les Significations...
With AstroScoop Plus, it is possible to select astrological
factors. In the case of this investigation, these are the seven classic
planets, the Caput Draconis, the major aspects and the old systems of
house division (Campanus, Porphyry and Regiomontanus).
With AstroScoop Plus, it is possible to create a database by
means of directories. For example, the astrological data in the
1557-Prono-F are saved in a directory, named 1557-Prono-F, with a number
of subdirectories, regarding aspects, quartercharts and lunar phases.
of long time ago regarding planetary cycles or planetary longitudes are
not reflected in present-day data sources (ephemeredes, software). This
can lead to interpretation problems. As an example: note 9 of J.P. Brach
de l'estat et mutation des temps.
Brach writes: "Abu-Masha
Djafar ibn Mohammed, in the Middle Ages called Albumazar, Arabian
astrologer, 9th century, was the first one (known to us) who predicted
the great turbulences for the exact date in 1789, to which is referred
by Turrel, Roussat, Carrion, Nostradamus etc." Brach refers to a
"great conjunction" of Jupiter and Saturn in 1789.
According to present-day data sources, there was no such "great
conjunction" in 1789. In 1789, Saturn was in Pisces and Jupiter
went from the last degrees of Cancer into the first degrees of Virgo.
There was a Jupiter-Saturn conjunction in 1782, but that one occurred on
28 Sagittarius and was not a "great conjunction".
One can only understand the meaning of Albumazar's prediction after
consulting literature. Present-day material does not provide an anwer to
these ideas. However, this material answers the question to what extent
earlier ideas about planetary cycles are confirmed by "the reality
of the ephemeris". Albumazar's predictions turns out to be sheer
luck: a predicted event took place on the predicted date, but was not
accompanied by the described phenomenon.
These kind of things ask for permanent awareness during research in the
nostradamian field, when one wants to apply present-day data sources.
Meern, the Netherlands, July 3, 2004
on January 28, 2009
The titles, places and year
of issue of the mentioned authors are listed in the bibliography.
p.414: Pleine Lune le 14.a 12.heu.75.minu.à 27.deg.47.mi de Cancer,
qui sera par aquosité humide. auc quelque moderatió... [text]
Peut-être aura-t-on recalculé les pointes des maisons d'après le système de
Regiomontanus tout en gardant les astres dans les mêmes maisons
p.11-13. His introduction does not show if this was restricted to the
letters, or if the horoscope figures were also drawn again. In the
horoscope figures in L'astrologie de Nostradamus - dossier,
the legenda (horoscope data) are printed instead of written.
p.139-143; Dupèbe, p.131-139.
The Predictions and Almanachs of Michel Nostradamus.
to Dupèbe, Brotot had in mind to publish the 1558-Prono-F (Dupèbe, p.15).
p.64; Dupèbe, p.31-32.
means that Brotot's letter does not date from September 20, 1557,
but from September 20, 1554.
Chevignard, p.428 en
p.427 en 438-439.
Significations de l'Eclipse 1559 and the Prognostication for
the year 1559.
Prognostication for the year 1559 and the Recueil des
chart theft sacred objects from the Orange cathedral.
1936, in: Amadou, p.369. [text]