Nostradamus De grootste ziener aller tijden  
(J. Vandervoort, Amsterdam, 1998)
- T.W.M. van Berkel -

Nederlandse versie

Vreede 1941
Servire publishers, The Hague

The 1941-Vreede-translation
The first time a complete, Dutch translation of the Prophecies was published, was in 1941. This translation, made by prof. dr. mr. H. Houwens Post, also known as mr. dr. W.L. Vreede, was published by Servire publishers, The Hague and was meant as a reply to the Dutch national-socialist brochure Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?, published in april 1940 by W.J. Ort in The Hague. After the war, Houwens Post's translation (on this Site abbreviated as the "1941-Vreede-translation") was not published again. At the end of the seventies, the use of this translation was granted to Nico Schors, director of Schors publishers, Amsterdam. In that time, there was a huge increase of interest in the Netherlands in esoteric and occult literature. As a result, the 1941-Vreede-translation was reprinted countless times during twenty years. For the last time, this happened in 1994.
In The 1941-Vreede-translation and the 1558-Lyon-edition the source texts, used by Houwens Post for his translation, are discussed thoroughly: the copy of the 1668-Amsterdam-edition, made by the Frenchman P.V. Piobb in 1938 (with addition of a version of the Letter to Cesar, printed in 1558) and the book Das Mysterium des Nostradamus by dr. Chr. Wöllner (Leipzig, 1926). 
In De Profetieën van Nostradamus (mr. dr. W.L. Vreede, NL, 1941) it is discussed in what way Houwens Post turned himself against national-socialist Nostradamus-publications, published in Germany.


A modernized version


In 1979, the cover of the facsimile-edition of the 1941-Vreede-translation contained a horoscope figure for the Solar Eclipse of August 11, 1999, 11:17 GMT, Paris. Underneath the horoscope, the publisher's name was printed. In later editions, the publisher's name was replaced by Houwens Post's translation of quatrain 10-72. According to some Century-scholars, this quatrain dealt with the Solar Eclipse of August 11, 1999. The book does not contain information about the source of this horoscope figure or about the one who erected it. This figure is taken from page 55 in Nostradamus - Prophetische Weltgeschichte (dr. N. Alexander Centurio, Bietigheim, 1968). The cusps of this horoscope were calculated by means of the Placidus system of house division. Aspect lines showed that Sun conjunct Moon on 18 Leo was in square with Mars on 18 Scorpio and Saturn on 16 Taurus, and that Mars and Saturn squared Uranus on 14 Aquarius. The aspects Sun/Moon opposite Uranus and Mars opposite Saturn were not shown by means of aspect lines. There were many errors in this chart. Mercury (1 Leo), Venus (2 Virgo retrograde), the North and South Lunar Node (13 Leo and 13 Aquarius) and the Part of Fortune (conjunct the Ascendant) were not depicted; the zodiacal longitudes of Uranus, Neptune and Pluto were given without mentioning their retrogradation and Neptune, whose longitude was 2 Aquarius (retrograde), was situated in the last decanate of Capricorn. 
The name "dr. N. Alexander Centurio" was the author's pseudonym of the German philologist/historian dr. phil. Alexander Max Centgraf (1893-1970), an active national-socialist who between June and December 1941 wrote an anti-Semitic, anti-communist Nostradamusbrochure, which was translated into Dutch and published in 1941 by the then nazificated publishing company Hijman, Stenfert Kroese & Van der Zande NV, Arnhem, entitled Voorspellingen die uitgekomen zijn - Michel Nostradamus spreekt in 1558 over het verloop en den uitslag van dezen oorlog. After World War II, Centgraf did not dissociate himself from his national-socialist activities. On the contrary: he included material from the German source text of Voorspellingen die uitgekomen zijn... in his post-war publications. Centgraf's involvement in national-socialism became clear only in 2003, as a result of the investigation of my colleague Ulrich Maichle of national-socialist propaganda, based upon the Centuries (Die Nostradamus-Propaganda der Nazis, 1939-1942, Until then, this was unknown. It therefore turns out to be an unfortunate coincidence that for the cover of the reprinted facsimile-edition of the 1941-Vreede-translation, meant as a counterweight to the national-socialist brochure Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen? a horoscope figure has been used, depicted in a book of a Century-scholar who in earlier years was an active national-socialist and who used the Centuries for psychological warfare.
The eighth reprint of the 1941-Vreede-translation, published in 1992, had a new cover, designed by Chris Kok, on which a colonnade was depicted with a view on clouds from above. At the top of the cover, the words Kijken in de toekomst (tr: looking into the future) were printed.


The fact that the 1941-Vreede-translation was reprinted until the nineties, without any change, meant that people had to buy a translation of the Prophecies, which was written according to rules of spelling and grammar which in the course of the years had become obsolete. In 1998, Schors publishers replaced the reprint of the 1941-Vreede-translation by Nostradamus De grootste ziener aller tijden (tr.: Nostradamus, the greatest visionary of all times). This book is written by Jan Vandervoort. It contains a linguistic revision of the 1941-Vreede-translation, a biography of Nostradamus, descriptions of predictions which are fulfilled, abused or interpreted in a sometimes hilarious way and prescriptions for pills, elixirs and beauty devices. 
The cover of Nostradamus De grootste ziener aller tijden is designed by Studio Paul C. Pollmann in Amsterdam. On the background, an old-French version of the quatrains 01-01 and 01-02 is depicted continously. A portrait, supposing to represent Nostradamus, is printed on the foreground. On the left side, photographs are depicted of the Jalta conference of the British PM Churchill, the American president Roosevelt and the Soviet dictator Stalin, Arab women carrying an automatic weapon, an astronaut on the moon and armed vehicles marching onward. The backside contains photographs of the British PM Thatcher and a missile launch.
According to the preface, Nostradamus De grootste ziener aller tijden differs from books which contain dubious interpretations, which are sensational with sometimes shocking photographs or which were accomplished by conversations with the seer himself or by a channeled dialogue. 
The first edition of Nostradamus De grootste ziener aller tijden was published on October 19, 1998. The second edition, a reprint with a slightly different cover, was published in October 2001, one month after the attack on the World Trade Centre in New York. The third edition, also a reprint, dates from 2008. 
During my investigation of national-socialist and allied Nostradamus-publications I noticed correspondences between the chapter Wonderbaarlijke interpretaties en 'uitgekomen' voorspellingen (tr.: amazing interpretations and 'fulfilled' predictions) in the book by Vandervoort and the chapter VERLEDEN, HEDEN en TOEKOMST Op wonderbaarlijke wijze voorspeld door den Franschman MICHEL NOSTRADAMUS in zijn "Les vrayes Centuries et Prophéties" (tr.: PAST, PRESENT and FUTURE predicted in a remarkable way by the Frenchman MICHEL NOSTRADAMUS in his "Les vrayes Centuries et Prophéties"), in Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen? (tr.: How will this war end?, The Hague, 1940), a national-socialist Nostradamus-publication. These correspondences show that Vandervoort copied texts from this book, without mentioning its title. The correspondences not only stretch out to the interpretation of fulfilled quatrains, but also to the Dutch texts of these quatrains in this chapter of Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?.
In this review, the contents of Vandervoorts book and his methods are thoroughly discussed. The aim of this discussion is to answer the question to what extent the replacement of the 1941-Vreede-translation by Nostradamus De grootste ziener aller tijden fits to the translation by Houwens Post and the aim he wanted to achieve.


The nature of the revision of the 1941-Vreede-translation
In the preface, (p.8) it is written that Houwens Posts translation was the starting point for the revised version. The revision was a linguistic one; hardly it affected the contents. The revision consisted of re-writing the text, according to contemporary rules of Dutch grammar and spelling. Some old-fashioned words or expressions were replaced by contemporary ones. When necessary, changes or corrections were applied.
The revised version is on p.63-227. The revision clearly contributed to the readability of the 1941-Vreede-translation.
In this part of the book, Vandervoort does not specify the corrections and replacements. Quite a pity, especially since there is no parallel French source text. Mistakes, made by Houwens Post, were not corrected. For example, his translation of Saurome in quatrain 03-58 in the Saar region instead of in Sarmatia, was copied by Vandervoort (1941-Vreede-translation, p.73, Vandervoort, p.108). In the discussion of this quatrain on p.43, the word Saurome was translated in Sarmatia. The reason for this discrepancy is discussed in "Peculiar quatrain texts", one of the next paragraphs in this review.
Houwens Post could translate all quatrains, except 29. He decided to keep the translation of these quatrains incomplete, to mark this in the Dutch text and to include the French text of these quatrains in an appendix. In the revised version of the 1941-Vreede-translation, the translation of these quatrains remained incomplete and the French text of these quatrains was included in Appendix I.


General knowledge
The variety of themes, discussed in Nostradamus De grootste ziener aller tijden, as well as the remarks in the preface lead to the supposition that the author is thoroughly acquainted with Nostradamus and his work.
In Appendix III, a list of recommended literature, Vandervoort gave the maximum number of quality stars to among others Nostradamus - ses origines, sa vie, son oeuvre (Salon-de-Provence, 1993 [1972]), written by dr. E. Leroy. The biography of Nostradamus, written by Vandervoort around 1998, does not exceed the biography, written by Houwens Post in 1941. Despite his opinion about Leroys book, Vandervoort maintained legends about Nostradamus' ascendancy which were refuted by Leroy.
On p.13, Agen, the place of residence of Jules-César Scaliger and in the period 1533-1538 also Nostradamus' place of residence, was twice printed as Aken (i.e. Aachen, Germany). This mistake raises the idea that Nostradamus spent a couple of years in Germany, which has not been the case.
Vandervoort briefly discusses a horoscope of Nostradamus, calculated with present-day software. The horoscope figure which is the result of this calculation, is depicted on p.26. The birth data: December 14, 1503, 11:40 True Local Time, Saint-Rémy de Provence. The zodiacal longitude of the Ascendant: 23:49:40 Pisces. The zodiacal longitude of the MC: 26:58:08 Sagittarius. On p.28, an older, square horoscope figure is depicted. Vandervoort did not specify in which book this figure was depicted originally. Its birth data: December 14, 1503, 12:14 True Local Time, Saint-Rémy de Provence. The zodiacal longitude of the Ascendant: 11 Aries. The zodiacal longitude of the MC: 5 Capricorn.
The author of this review adds to this theme that two sources point to a birth around noon. First: a remark in a letter of Nostradamus to Laurens Tubbe, dated on October 15, 1561, and published in Amadou's L'astrologie de Nostradamus - dossier, p.118-119. In this letter, a configuration is mentioned which seems to point to Nostradamus' birth chart: le Soleil est réprésenté en haut, trois planètes en bas (tr.: the Sun is depicted high, three planets low). This remark might correspond with the zodiacal longitude of the Sun on 2 Capricorn and the ones of Jupiter retrograde (11 Cancer), Saturn retrograde (16 Cancer) and Mars retrograde (19 Cancer), with the MC located in either the last degrees of Sagittarius or the first degrees of Capricorn. Second, in the section Brief Discours in Ianus Gallicus (1594), it reads: Michel de Nostredame [...] naquit en la ville de Saint-Remy, en Provence, l'an de grâce 1503, un jeudi 14 décembre, environ les douze heures de midi (tr.: Michel de Nostredame [...] was born in the city of Saint-Remy, in Provence, in the year of our Lord 1503, on Thursday, December 14, around noon.). However, these remarks do not contain an exact birth time. From an astrological-technical point of view, one should first rectify the birth-time, for example by means of important events which occurred in the life of Nostradamus, before discussing his birth-chart. It makes a difference whether the Ascendant is in Pisces or Aries, as well as it makes a difference whether the Sun is in Capricorn in the 9th house, conjunct an MC in Capricorn, or in Capricorn in the 10th house, conjunct an MC in Sagittarius. Vandervoort does not discuss these differences. He does not explain why he maintains 11:40 True Local Time Saint-Rémy de Provence as birth-time. Nothing in his book points to a rectification of the birth time by means of for example important events which happened in Nostradamus' life.


Wöllner 1926
Wöllner, 1926

Houwens Posts source texts
Regularly, Vandervoort writes that the 1941-Vreede-translation was based upon a 1558-Lyon-edition, a remark which also occurs in the colophon of the book, written by the publisher. Both copy the remarks, written by Houwens Post in 1941. On p.10, Houwens Post writes that some copies of the editions, dated in 1555 and 1558, are preserved in some French libraries. Vandervoort copied this remark (Vandervoort, p.53). However, not one copy of a 1558-edition has been found in the past centuries. Experts doubt - for various reasons - the existence of such an edition. 
In The 1941-Vreede-translation and the 1558-Lyon-edition it has been demonstrated with numerous arguments that the remarks by Houwens Post and Vandervoort are the result of a misunderstanding. The main arguments are that the quatrains 06-100, 07-43 and 07-44 did not occur before 1605 (the 1605-Sève-edition). The book by Houwens Post only contains pictures from the 1668-Amsterdam-edition, not from a 1558-Lyon-edition. The book by Vandervoort contains pictures from the 1555-Bonhomme-edition, one of the 1557-Du Rosne-editions and the 1668-Amsterdam-edition, but not one from a 1558-Lyon-edition. The title, given by Vandervoort on p.238 (Les vrayes centuries et propheties de maister Micheld Nostradamus, Lyon, 1558) resembles the title of the 1668-Amsterdam-edition. Further, it has been shown that the text of the second biblical chronology in the 1941-Vreede-translation is not translated from a 1558-Lyon-edition, but from Wöllners Das Mysterium des Nostradamus (Leipzig, 1926). Wöllner, who used the text of the quatrains and the Letters as printed in Le Pelletiers Les Oracles de Michel Nostradamus (1867), revised this part of the Epistle. Houwens Post almost completely copied this revision.
Further research by the author of this review showed that in the case of the translation of the Preface to Cesar, Houwens Post once in a while also used Wöllners translation. For example, Wöllner translated the words anaragonique révolution in dann nähert sich die Welt einer sowohl todbringenden als lebenzeugenden Umwälzung (Wöllner, p.83). Houwens Post translated this German translation in nadert de wereld tot een zowel den dood brengende, als het leven vernieuwende omwenteling (tr.: the world approaches a revolution which brings death and renews life as well; 1941-Vreede-translation, p.31). Vandervoort copied this translation (Vandervoort, p.68).
The source texts, used by Houwens Post, are the 1938-Piobb-copy (a copy of the 1668-Amsterdam-edition, completed with the Letter to Cesar) and the 1926-Wöllner-comment. The idea that the 1668-Amsterdam-edition is related to a 1558-Lyon-edition, might be based upon a part of the subtitle of the 1668-Amsterdam-edition: Reueües & corrigées suyuant les premieres Editions imprimées en Auignon en l'an 1556. & à Lyon en l'an 1558.& autres. Except for the addition & autres, this subtitle was used previously in the 1649-Rouen-edition, entitled Les vrayes centvries de Me Michel Nostradamus. This subtitle does not say anything about the contents. 
In good faith, Houwens Post might have assumed that the 1938-Piobb-copy was a revised 1558-Lyon-edition and therefore listed it as such. He also might have decided to refer to a 1558-Lyon-edition in order to hide his real sources. By the end of 1940, in France, the Gestapo confiscated a book, written by De Fontbrune sr., and the most important of Houwens Posts source texts was a French one, the 1938-Piobb-copy. 
Anyway, it is correct and better that authors list the titles of the books they actually used instead of listing titles of previous editions which they only know by reference. If listed correctly, there is no room for misunderstandings.


"Pasteur" 1940
Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?

Peculiar quatrain texts
Vandervoort revised the 1941-Vreede-translation and made some changes and/or corrections. He does not indicate which changes and/or corrections he made. In Vandervoort's book, the 29 quatrains which Houwens Post could not translate completely, remained incomplete. The French texts of these quatrains is included in Appendix I.
One of the quatrains which Houwens Post could not translate completely, is quatrain 09-34. The pages.32 and 199 in Vandervoort's book contain Dutch versions of this quatrain. These versions are different from each other. In the version on page 32, the first line is translated completely, without any restriction, whereas on page 199, there is a restriction, the same one which Houwens Post made.
In the French text on p.225, the second line, it reads thuille. On page 32, this is translated in Tuilerieën; on page 199 in dakpan (roof-tile, modern-French: tuile). In both Dutch versions, the number vijf honderd (five hundred) is given. But in the French text in the 1941-Vreede-translation as well as in the French text in Vandervoort's book, it reads cinq (five) instead of cinq cent (five hundred). In the 1668-Amsterdam-edition, it reads cinq cens (five hundred). Closing: in the third and fourth line in the version on page 32 in Vandervoort's book, it reads that Saulce is the son of an oil-trader. This is not the translation of the French text, but an interpretation. In the translation on p.199, nothing is mentioned about oil-traders.
This is only one example out of many. In this chapter, the texts of a large number of Dutch quatrains differ from the modernized translation, made by Vandervoort.

Quatrain 09-34

Vandervoort 1998, p.32.

1941-Vreede-translation, p.174
Vandervoort 1998, p.199.

1941-Vreede-translation, p.203.
Vandervoort 1998, p.225.

De eenzame echtgenoot zal gekroond worden met de mitra
Bij zijn terugkeer zullen er vijfhonderd de Tuilerieën bestormen
Hij zal verraden worden door Narbonne en Saulce,
de zoon van een oliehandelaar.

....* onder de echtgenoot zal een mijter dragen.
De terugkeer van het conflict zal de dakpan voorbijgaan.
Door vijfhonderd zal een verraad aangeduid worden.
Narbonne en Saulce hebben door messen olie.

La part sous mary sera mitré.
Retour conflict passera sur la thuille
Par cinq un trahyr sera tiltré
Narbon & Saulce par couteaux avons d'huille.

The way Vandervoort worked, raises a couple of questions. One of these questions is why he did not change the translation of quatrain 09-34 on page 199, since a complete, although different, translation was available. Next, what to think about the more than 20 other quatrains in the chapter Wonderbaarlijke interpretaties en 'uitgekomen' voorspellingen, each of them different from the revised translation in another part of this book, each of them discussed as being fulfilled.
Quite probably, Vandervoort did not explain these quatrains by himself, but copied a number of interpretations of quatrains, including quatrain texts, from other publications, most of the times without mentioning the source. Only in one case he mentions an author: De Fontbrune. 

In my research on national-socialist and allied Nostradamus-literature, I found a liberal German translation of the quatrains 01-01 and 01-02 in a brochure, entitled Die Prophezeiungen des Nostradamus, volume 18 from the series Informations-Schriften (1940, abbreviated with Brochure-18-D). Originally, this liberal translation was made by dr. Bruno Winkler (Und dies geheimnisvolle Buch...! Das Leben des Michel Nostradamus, 1937, Görlitz,p.80). He published it again on p.12 of Nostradamus und seine Prophezeiungen für das zwanzigste Jahrhundert (Görlitz, 1939). 
The Dutch translation of this liberal German translation is published in the Brochure-18-NL and - in slightly different words - on page 13 of Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?, a national-socialist propaganda booklet, published by W.J. Ort, The Hague, 1940. According to the preface, in 1940, a Dutchman translated this booklet from the leftover writings of a French friend. From the minutes of Goebbels'
Ministry of Propaganda (Boelcke: Kriegspropaganda 1939-1941), it can be derived that in November 1939, Goebbels ordered Hans-Wolfgang Herwarth von Bittenfeld, a retired lieutenant-colonel who worked in his Ministry as extraordinary chief of the Auslandspresse section, to write this booklet. Others who were involved, were prof. dr. Karl Bömer, chief of the Auslandspresse of the Ministry of Propaganda, and Leopold Gutterer, head of the Propaganda section in the Ministry of Propaganda. In het Bundesarchiv a typescript of this booklet is preserved (R 9350/1083), entitled Was bringt das Jahr 1940? Die Antwort geben uns "Les vrayes Centuries et Propheties de Maistre Michel Nostradamus". The compilers copied large amounts of text from books by the Germans Loog (1921), Kritzinger (1922), Noah (1928) and Winkler (1939) and a book by the Frenchman De Fontbrune sr. (1939 [1938]). In the second quarter of 1940, this booklet was translated into eight languages: Croatian, Dutch, English, French, Italian, Rumanian, Serb and Swedish.[1]

In Vandervoort's book, the revised versions of quatrains 01-01 and 01-02 are printed on p.73. In the chapter Inleiding bij de Profetieën (tr.: Introduction to the Prophecies), different Dutch versions of these quatrains are printed on p.56. These versions correspond word-by-word with the versions in in Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?, which is a translation of Was bringt das Jahr 1940?, to which on this website is referred with the reference keyword "Berlin". The compilers of Was bringt das Jahr 1940? copied their German version of the quatrains 01-01 and 01-02 from Winkler's Nostradamus und seine Prophezeiungen für das zwanzigste Jahrhundert (Görlitz, 1939). One has to keep in mind that a literal translation of the quatrains 01-01 and 01-02 in Dutch can only result in the translation, made by Houwens Post and copied by Vandervoort on p.73. It is impossible that the Dutch text of these quatrains, printed on p.56 in Vandervoort's book, is the result of a literal translation. 

Quatrains 01-01 and 01-02

1668-Amsterdam-edition, p.1.

1941-Vreede-translation, p.34.
Vandervoort 1998, p.73.

"Pasteur", 1940, p.13;
Vandervoort 1998, p.56.

"Berlin", p.6;
Winkler 1939, p.12.

Estant assis, de nuict secret estude,
Seul, reposé sur la selle d'airain?
Flambe exigue, sortant de solitude
Fait proserer qui n'est à croire en vain.

's Nachts, gezeten voor de studie van verborgen dingen,
Alleen, rustend op de bronzen zetel:
Een klein licht, dat uit de eenzaamheid ontspruit,
Doet ontluiken, wat niet als ijdel te verwerpen valt.

Zit ik 's nachts, ontvankelijk voor geheime dingen,
In diepe eenzaamheid, op een harde zienerstroon,
Dan laat mij een verloren vonkje weldra hopen,
Dat mijn geloof op juiste wijze zal worden beloond.

Sitz ich des Nachts, geheimen Dingen offen,
In stiller Einsamkeit auf ehernem Seherthron,
Lässt bald mich das verlorne Flämmchen hoffen,
Dass meinem Glauben wird der rechte Lohn.

La verge en main mise au milieu des branches,
De l'onde il moulle & le limbe & le pied,
Un peur & voix fremissent par les manches,
Splendeur divine, le devin pres s'assied.

Met de staf in de handen, midden in de takken geplaatst,
Maakt hij met het water zowel de zoom als voeten nat.
Een gevoel van vrees en een stem trekken omhoog door de armen heen.
Goddelijke verhevenheid. Het goddelijke komt nader.

Als ik de roede in de handen vat,
Besproeit weldra de golf mij zoom en voeten,
Ik hoor een stem dan en verbleek,
O hemels licht, hier is het goddelijke!

Wenn ich die Rute mit den Händen fasse,
Netzt bald die Welle Saum und Füsse mir.
Ich höre eine Stimme und erblasse.
Himmlisches Licht! Das Göttliche ist hier!

A comparison between the contents of Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen? and the contents of Vandervoort's book shows that Vandervoort copied both the explanation of quatrains and the Dutch translation of these quatrains. The copied quatrains: the quatrains 01-01, -02, -35, -36, -47 and -60, the quatrains 02-68, -75 and -100, the quatrains 03-13, -35 and -58, the quatrains 05-28 and -57, quatrain 06-20, the quatrains 07-13 and 08-60 and the quatrains 09-18 and -34. The order in which these quatrains are discussed in Nostradamus De grootste ziener aller tijden is identical with the order in Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?. A couple of times, Vandervoort copied texts word by word, some other times, he summarized the main meaning. Another indication that Vandervoort copied quatrain texts and explanations from Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen? is the fact that on page 39 in Nostradamus De grootste ziener aller tijden, quatrain 06-20 is listed incorrectly as the twentieth quatrain of the fifth century, a listing which is also given on page 23 in Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?.

Three examples are discussed which show the way in which Vandervoort might have worked. On p.36, he writes: 

Nostradamus heeft minstens een dozijn kwatrijnen gewijd aan Napoleon Bonaparte.
(tr.: Nostradamus dedicated at least a dozen quatrains to Napoleon Bonaparte). 

In Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?, it reads on p.18: 

Daar wij ons nu toch bij Napoleon Bonaparte bevinden, verdient het wel de aandacht dat Nostradamus aan hem ongeveer een dozijn van zijn vierregelige verzen heeft gewijd.
(tr.: Since we are now dealing with Napoleon Bonaparte, the fact that Nostradamus dedicated about a dozen of his four-line verses to him, does deserve attention.)

While discussing quatrain 07-13, Vandervoort writes on p.37: 

Frappant detail is, dat Nostradamus als hij doelde op Napoleon, schrijft over het 'geschoren hoofd'. Bekend is dat Napoleon zijn haar ook daadwerkelijk kort droeg.
(tr.: A striking detail is that Nostradamus, when he meant Napoleon, writes about the 'shaven head'. It is known that Napoleon actually weared his hair short.) 

In Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?, p.19 reads as follows: 

Hij spreekt, wanneer hij Napoleon bedoelt, van het "Geschoren hoofd"! Napoleon droeg, in tegenstelling tot de mode van zijn tijd, zooals bekend mag worden verondersteld, kortgeschoren haar.
(tr.: He speaks, when he means Napoleon, about the "Shaven head"! Napoleon weared, in contrast with the fashion in his time, as might supposed to be known, short-shaven hair.)

The third example: Vandervoort's translation and discussion of quatrain 08-60 on p.38-39. He writes that in this quatrain, the end of the war is predicted. With the words "the war", Vandervoort means World War I. Next, he translates the first line (Premier en Gaule, premier en Romanie) in Als eerste in Gallië, als eerste in Italië (tr.: As first one in Gallia, as first one in Italy). In the revised 1941-Vreede-translation, this line reads: De eerste in Gallië, de eerste in Romanië (tr.: the first in Gallia, the first in Romania; p.189). 
In Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen? p.22 reads:

Het einde van den wereldoorlog tenslotte wordt opgetekend in VIII, 60. Het vers luidt vertaald als volgt: Als eerste in Gallië, als eerste in Italië [...] 
(tr.: Closing, the end of the world war is described in VIII, 60. This verse reads, translated, as follows: As first one in Gallia, as first one in Italy [...]).

Last: a demonstration of the correspondences between the Dutch texts of quatrain 09-34, in Vandervoort's book, p.32, and Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?, p.17:

Quatrain 09-34

Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?, 1940, p.17.

Vandervoort 1998, p.32.

De eenzame bedroefde echtgenoot zal gekroond worden met de mitra. 
Bij zijn terugkeer zullen er vijfhonderd een stormloop op de Tuilerieën ondernemen.
Hij zal verraden worden door den veelbetitelden Narbonne.
Een zoon en nakomeling van oliehandelaren, Saulce genaamd, zal hem overleveren aan de bewakers.

De eenzame echtgenoot zal gekroond worden met de mitra
Bij zijn terugkeer zullen er vijfhonderd de Tuilerieën bestormen
Hij zal verraden worden door Narbonne en Saulce,
de zoon van een oliehandelaar.

On the pages 42 and 43, Vandervoort writes that the Frenchman Dr. de Fontbrune linked the quatrains 02-75, 02-100 and 03-58 to World War II. He also writes that the Germans regularly used quatrain 03-85 for propaganda purposes. These remarks are references in veiled terms to Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?, in which De Fontbrune's name is mentioned a couple of times. The Dutch versions in the chapter Wonderbaarlijke interpretaties en 'uitgekomen' voorspellingen of the quatrains 02-75, 02-100 and 03-58 are linguistically revised versions of the versions in Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?.
Appendix III, a list of recommended literature in Vandervoort's book, does not contain the title Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?. Twice, the title Nostradamus, historièn et prophète (Rocher, 1982), is mentioned. This book is written by Jean-Charles de Fontbrune, a son of dr. De Fontbrune. Unlike his father, Jean-Charles never used a university degree in his books about Nostradamus, which makes it impossible that the references to Dr. de Fontbrune on the pages 42 and 42 of Nostradamus De grootste ziener aller tijden are references to Jean-Charles de Fontbrune.


Summary and conclusions
Vandervoort achieved a readable linguistic revision of the 1941-Vreede-translation, which improved the accessibility of this translation. However, for several reasons, the quality of his book is affected negatively. Vandervoort is lacking knowledge about the life and work of Nostradamus. In some ways, his biography is obsolete. He does not discuss astrological differences between given birth-charts of Nostradamus. There is no proof for his supposition that Houwens Post used a 1558-Lyon-edition. He did not correct Houwens Post's translation mistakes, although these mistakes could have been corrected easily when Houwens Post's translation was compared with the French original (the 1668-Amsterdam-edition or the 1938-Piobb-copy). It became clear that Vandervoort used several sources simultaneously without specifying them. One of these sources is in a political sense contaminated: a national-socialist source.

The unpleasant thing is that material which originates from Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?, a national-socialist Nostradamus-brochure, is included in a book which contains a revision of a translation, made as a token of resistance to this national-socialist Nostradamus-brochure.[2] Vandervoort's references in veiled terms raises the idea that he was aware of the dubious nature of this brochure.

It has been for good reasons that Schors publishers decided to replace the 1941-Vreede-translation by a contemporary version. With his linguistic work, Vandervoort achieved a readable result. 
Regarding the information about Nostradamus and his work, the explanation of the quatrains, the different translations and the sources which are not mentioned - one of them, the brochure Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?, in a political sense contaminated - it has to be said that Vandervoort did not do a proper job. Considering the objective Houwens Post had in mind in 1941: a counter-react to Hoe zal deze oorlog eindigen?, this is quite regrettable.


Addendum: Jan Vandervoort
The question is how it is possible that someone, who revised an old translation of the Centuries, i.e. 944 quatrains and two extensive letters (the Preface to Cesar and the Epistle to Henry II), contents himself with leaving aside his modern versions (which were the result of a great labour) and using different versions. 
In my study, I have found nothing about Vandervoort. On Internet and in catalogues of national libraries, no other publications, written by him, are listed. Therefore, I count with the possibility that several persons are covered by the name Jan Vandervoort and that the one who revised the Centuries was not the one who wrote the chapters Wonderbaarlijke interpretaties en 'uitgekomen' voorspellingen and Inleiding bij de Profetieën.


De Meern, the Netherlands, November 1, 2004
T.W.M. van Berkel
updated on
May 25, 2009


Nostradamus - De grootste ziener aller tijden
Author: J. Vandervoort
Publisher: Schors, Amsterdam
ISBN: 90 6378 401 5


  1. Van Berkel: Was bringt das Jahr 1940? (Berlin, 1940 [1939]). [text]
  2. Van Berkel: De profetieën van Nostradamus (mr. dr. H. Houwens Post alias mr. dr. W.L. Vreede, The Hague, 1941). [text]



Home (EN)
New articles
Updated articles
Research results
Analysis quatrains
World War II 
Debate platform
French research
Web links
Free newsletter
Privacy / cookies


© T.W.M. van Berkel, De Meern, NL
alle rechten voorbehouden / all rights reserved