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The great empire will be for England,

The all-powerful one for more than three hundred years:

Great forces to pass by sea and land,

The Lusitanians will not be satisfied thereby.

Almanac: 1555 - 1563 Almanac of 1555

The soul touched from a distance by the divine spirit presages, Trouble, famine, plague, war to hasten: Water, droughts, land and sea stained with blood, Peace, truce, prelates to be born, princes to die.

The Tyrrhenian Sea, the Ocean for the defense, The great Neptune and his trident soldiers: Provence secure because of the hand of the great Tende, More Mars Narbonne the heroic de Villars.

The big bronze one which regulates the time of day, Upon the death of the Tyrant it will be dismissed: Tears, laments and cries, waters, ice bread does not give, V.S.C. peace, the army will pass away.

Near Geneva terror will be great, Through the counsel, that cannot fail:

The new King has his league prepare,

The young one dies, famine, fear will cause failure.

O cruel Mars, how you should be feared, More is the scythe with the silver conjoined: Fleet, forces, water, wind of shadow to fear, Sea and land in a truce. The friends has joined L.V.

For not having a guard you will be more offended, The weak fort, Pinquiet uneasy and pacific: They cry "famine," the people are oppressed, The sea reddens, the Long one proud and iniquitous.

The five, six, fifteen, late and soon they remain, The heir's bloodline ended: the cities revolted: The herald of peace twenty and three return, The open-hearted five locked up, news invented.

At a distance, near the Aquarius, Saturn turns back, That year great Mars will give a fire opposition, Towards the North to the south the great proud female, Florida in contemplation will hold the port.

Eight, fifteen, and five what disloyalty

The evil spy will come to be permitted:

Fire in the sky, lightning, fear, Papal terror,

The west trembles, pressing too hard the Salty wine.

Six, twelve, thirteen, twenty will speak to the Lady, The older one by a woman will be corrupted: Dijon, Guienne hail, lightning makes the first cut into it, The insatiable one of blood and wine satisfied.

The sky to weep for him, made to do that! The sea is being prepared, Hannibal to plan his ruse: Denis [drops anchor], fleet delays, does not remain silent, Has not known the secret, and by which you are amused!

Venus Neptune will pursue the enterprise,

Pensive one imprisoned, adversaries troubled:

Fleet in the Adriatic, cities towards the Thames,

The fourth clamor, by night, the reposing ones wounded.

The great one of the sky the cape will give, Relief, Adriatic makes an offer to the port: He who will be able will save himself from dangers,

By night the Great One wounded pursues.

The port protests too fraudulently and false,

The maw opened, condition of peace:

Rhone in crystal, water, snow, ice stained,

The death, death, wind, through rain the burden broken.

Almanac of 1557

The shocking and infamous armed one will fear the great furnace, First the chosen one, the captives not returning: The world's lowest crime, the Angry Female Irale not at east, Barb, Hister, Malta. And the Empty One does not return.

Conjoined here, in the sky the dispatch opened, Taken, left behind, mortality not certain: Little rain, entry, the sky and earth dries, Undone, death, caught, arrived at a bad hour.

Naval victor at Hoek, Antwerp divorce, Great heir, from the sky fire, trembling high woods: Sardinian wood, Malta, Palermo, Corsica, Prelate to die, strikes the one on the Mule.

The errant herald turns from the dog to the Lion, Fire will burn the town, pillage, new prize: To discover foists, Princes taken, they return, Spy taken Gaul, to the great one joined to the virgin.

From the great court banished, conflict, wounded, Elected, delivered, accused, cunning mutineers: And fire on the Pyrenees city, water, venoms, pressed, Not to travel by water, not to anger the Latins.

Sea, land to go, faith, loyalty broken, Pillage, wreck, tumult in the city: Proud, cruel act, ambition sated,

Weakling offended: the perpetrator of the deed unpunished.

Cold, great flood, expelled from the kingdom, Idiot, discord, Ursa Major and Minor, source in the East: Poison, siege laid, expelled out of the city, Happy return, new sect in ruins.

Sea closed, world opened, city exhausted, The Great One to fail, the newly elected, great mist: Florence to be open, campus to enter, faith broken, Stress will be severe to the white plume.

Tutelage on Vesta, war dies, transferred, Naval combat, honor, death, prelacy: Death come in, France greatly augmented, Elected one passed, come to a bad end.

Almanac of 1558

The young King makes a funeral wedding soon, Holy one stirred up, feasts, of the said, Mars dormant: Night tears they cry, they conduct the lady outside, The arrest and peace broken on all sides.

Vain rumor within the Hierarchy, Genoa to rebel: courses, offenses, tumults: For the greater King will be the monarchy, Election, conflict, covert burials.

Through discord in the absence to fail, One suddenly will put him back on top: Towards the North will be noises so loud, Lesions, points to travel, above.

On the Tyrrhenian Sea, of different sail, On the Ocean there will be diverse assaults: Plague, poison, blood in the house of canvas, Prefects, Legates stirred up to march high seas.

There where the faith was it will be broken, The enemies will feed upon the enemies: Fire rains [from the] Sky, it will burn, interrupted, Enterprise by night. Chief will make quarrels.

War, thunder, forces fields, depopulated, Terror and noise, assault on the frontier: Great Great One fallen, pardon for the exiles, Germans, Spaniards, by the sea the Barbarian banner.

The noise will be vain, the faltering ones bundled up, The Shaven Ones captured: the all-powerful One elected:

The two Reds and four true crusaders to fail, Rain troublesome to the powerful Monarch.

Rain, wind, forces, Barbarossa Hister, the Tyrrhenian Sea,

Vessels to pass Orkneys and beyond Gibraltar, grain and soldiers provided:

Retreats too well executed by Florence, Siena crossed,

The two will be dead, friendships joined.

Venus the beautiful will enter Florence.

The secret exiles will leave the place behind:

Many widows, they deplore the death of the Great One,

To remove from the realm, the Great Great one does not threaten.

Games, feasts, nuptials, dead Prelate of renown. Noise, peace of truce while the enemy threatens: Sea, land and sky noise, deed of the great Brennus, Cries gold, silver, the enemy they ruin.

Almanac of 1559

Lament, knell, great pillage, to pass the sea, the realm to increase, Sects, holy ones more polite beyond the sea: Plague, warmth, fire, banner of the King of Aquilon [the North], To erect a trophy, city of Henripolis.

The Great One to be no longer, rain, in the chariot, the crystal, Tumult stirred up, abundance of all goods: Shaven ones, Holy ones, new ones, old ones frightful, Elected ingrate, death, lament, joy, alliance.

Grain corrupted, air pestilent, locusts, Suddenly it will fall, new pasturage to be born: Captives put in irons, light ones, high-low, loaded, Through his bones evil which he had not wished to be the King.

Seized in the temple, through a sect's long intrigue, Elected, ravished in the woods, forms a quarrel: Seventy pairs new league to be born, From there their death, King appeased, news.

King hailed as Victor, and Emperor, The faith broken, the Royal deed known: Macedonian blood, King made conqueror,

The arrogant people come to humility through tears.

Through spite nuptials, wedding song,

For the three parts Reds, Shaven ones divided:

For the young black/king through fire the soul is restored.

To the great Neptune Ogmios converted.

From the house seven through death in mortal succession, Hail, tempest, pestilent evil, furies: King of the East all the West in flight, He will subjugate his former conquerors.

Pirates pillaged, heat, great drought,

Through too much not being, event not seen, unheard of:

For the foreigner the too great endearment,

New country King, the East fascinated.

The Urn found, the city tributary, Fields divided, new delusion: Spain wounded famine, military plaque, Mockery obstinate, confused, evil, reverie.

Virgins and widows, your good time approaches,

Not at all will it be that which they will pretend:

Far it will be necessary that the approach for it be new,

Very agreeable situation taken, completely restored, it will hold worse.

Here within it will be completed, The three Great one outside, the Bourbon will be far: Against the other two one of them will conspire, At the end of the month they will see the necessity.

Talks held, nuptials recommenced, The Great Great woman will go out of France: Voice in Rome not fatigued from crying out, Receives the peace through too false assurance.

Joy in tears will come to captivate Mars, Before the Great one the Divines will be stirred up: Without uttering a word they will enter from three sides, Mars made drowsy, upon ice run the wines.

Almanac of 1560

Day's journey, diet, interim, no council,

The year peace is being prepared, plague, schismatic famine:

Put outside inside, sky to change, domicile,

End of holiday, hierarchical revolt.

Diet to break up, the ancient sacred one to recover, Under the two, fire through pardon to result: Consecration without arms: the tall Red will want to have, Peace of neglect, the Elected One, the Widower, to live.

To be made to appear elected with novelty, Place of day-labor to go beyond the boundaries: The feigned goodness to change to cruelty, From the suspected place quickly will they all go out.

With the place chosen, the Shaved Ones will not be contented,

Led from Lake Geneva, unproven,

They will cause the old times to be renewed:

They will expose the frighten off the plot so well hatched.

Savoy peace will be broken, The last hand will cause a strong levy: The great conspirator will not be corrupted, And the new alliance approved.

A long comet to wrong the Governor, Hunger, burning fever, fire and reek of blood: To all estates Jovial Ones in great honor, Sedition by the Shaven ones, ignited.

Plague, famine, fire and ardor incessant, Lightning, great hail, temple struck from the sky: The Edict, arrest, and grievous law broken, The chief inventor his people and himself snatched up.

Deprived will be the Shaven Ones of their arms, It will augment their quarrel much: Father Liber deceived lightning Albanians, Sects will be gnawed to the marrow.

The modest request will be received, They will be driven out and then restored on top: The Great Great woman will be found content, Blind ones, deaf ones will be put uppermost.

He will not be placed, the New Ones expelled,

Black king and the Great One will hold hard: To have recourse to arms. Exiles expelled further, To sing of victory, not free, consolation.

The mourning left behind, supreme alliances, Great Shaven One dead, refusal given at the entrance: Upon return kindness to be in oblivion, The death of the just one perpetrated at a banquet.

Almanac of 1561

The King, King not to be, destruction by the Clement one, The year pestilent, the beclouded stirred up: For the great nobles every man for himself, no joy: And the term of the mockers will pass.

At the foot of the wall the shy Franciscan, The enclosure delivered, the cavalry trampling: Outside the temple Mars and the Scythe of Saturn, Outside, to divide the friends and upon the reverie.

The times purged, pestilential tempest, Barbarian insult, fury, invasion: Infinite evils for this month are prepared for us, And the Greatest Ones, two less, of mockery.

Joy not long, abandoned by his followers,

The year pestilent, the Greatest One assailed:

The good Lady in the Elysian Fields,

And the greater part of the cold goods not gathered.

Incursions of the Lion, not to prepare for conflicts, Sad enterprise, the air pestilent, hideous: From all sides the Great Ones will be afflicted, And ten and seven to assail twenty and two.

Retaken, surrendered, terror-stricken by the evil, The blood far inferior, and the faces hideous: To the most knowledgeable ones the ignorant one frightful, Plague, hatred, horror, the piteous female will fall low.

Dead and seized, the nonchalant ones of the exchange, They will go far away in approaching more strongly:

United ones locked up in the ruin, barn, Through long help the strongest one astonished.

Gray, whites and blacks, hidden, and broken, They will be put off, divided, put in their sieges: The ravishers will find themselves mocked, And the Vestals confined behind strong bars.

Almanac of 1562

Season of winter, good spring, sound, bad summer, Pernicious autumn, dry, wheat rare: Of wine enough, bad eyes, deeds, molested, War, mutiny, seditious waste.

The hidden desire for the good will succeed, Religion, peace, love and concord: The nuptial song will not be completely in accord, The high ones, who are low, and high, put to the rope.

For the Shaven Ones the Chief will not reach the end, Edicts changed, the secret ones set at large: Great One found dead, less of faith, low standing, Dissimulated, shuddering, wounded in the boar's lair.

Moved by Lion, near Lion he will undermine, Taken, captive, pacified by a woman: He will not hold as well as they will waver, Placed unpassed, to oust the soul from rage.

From Lion he will come to arouse to move, Vain discovery against infinite people: Known by none the evil for the duty, In the kitchen found dead and finished.

Nothing in accord, worse and more severe trouble,

As it was, land and sea to quieten:

All arrested, it will not be worth a double,

The iniquitous one will speak, Counsel of annihilation.

Portentous deed, horrible and incredible, Typhoon will make the wicked ones move: Those who then afterwards supported by the cable, And the greater part exiled on the fields.

Right put on the throne come into France from the sky, The whole world pacified by Virtue: Much blood to scatter, sooner change to come, By the birds, and by fire, and not by vers.

The colored ones, the Sacred malcontents, Then suddenly through the happy Androgynes: Of the great part to see, the time not come, Several amongst them will make their soups weak.

They will be returned to their full power, Conjoined at one point of the accord, not in accord: All defied, more promised to the Shaven Ones, Several amongst them outflanked in a band.

For the legate of terrestrial and dawn,

The great Cape will accommodate himself to all:

Tacit LORRAINE, to be listening,

He whose advice they will not want to agree with.

The enemy wind will impede the troop, For the greatest one advance put in difficulty: Wine with poison will be put in the cup, To pass the great gun without horse-power.

Through crystal the enterprise is broken, Games and feats, in LYONS to repose more: No longer will he take his repast with the Great Ones, Sudden catarrh, blessed water, to bathe him.

Almanac: 1564 - 1567 Almanac of 1564

The sextile year rains, wheat to abound, hatreds, Joy to men, Princes, King divorced: Herd to perish, human mutations, People oppressed and poison under the surface.

Times very diverse, discord discovered,

Council of war, change taken in, changed:

The Great Woman must not be, conspirators through water lost,

Great hostility, for the great one all steady.

The bit of the enemy's tongue approaches, The Debonair one to peace will want to reduce: The obstinate ones will want to lose the kinswoman, Surprised, Captives, and suspects fury to injure.

Fathers and mothers dead of infinite sorrows, Women in mourning, the pestilent she-monster: The Great One to be no more, all the world to end, Under peace, repose and every single one in opposition.

Princes and Christendom stirred up in debates, Foreign nobles, Christ's See molested: Become very evil, much good, mortal sight. Death in the East, plague, famine, evil treaty.

Land to tremble, killed, wasteful, monster, Captives without number, to do, undone, done: To go over the sea misfortune will occur, Proud against the proud evil done in disguise.

The unjust one lowered, they will molest him fiercely, Hail, to flood, treasure, and engraved marble: Chief of Persuasion people will kill to death, And attached will be the blade to the tree.

Of what not evil? inexcusable result, The fire not double, the Legate outside confused: Against the worse wounded the fight will not be made, The end of June the thread cut by firing.

Fine bonds enfeebled by accords,

Mars and Prelates united will not stop:

The great ones confused by gifts of mutilated bodies,

Dignified ones, undignified ones will seize the well endowed.

From good to the evil times will change, The peace in the South, the expectation of the Greatest Ones: The Great Ones grieving Louis too much more will stumble, Well-known Shaven Ones have neither power not understanding.

This is the month for evils so many as to be doubled, Deaths, plague to drain all, famine, to quarrel: Those of the reverse of exile will come to note, Great Ones, secrets, deaths, not to censure.

Through death, death to bite, counsel, robbery, pestiferous,

They will not dare to attack the Marines:

Deucalion a final trouble to make,

Few young people: half-dead to give a start.

Dead through spite he will cause the others to shine, And in an exalted place some great evils to occur: Sad concepts will come to harm each one, Temporal dignified, the Mass to succeed.

Almanac of 1565

A hundred times worse this year than the year passed, Even for the Greatest Ones of the realm and of the Church: Infinite evils, death, exile, ruin, smashed, To death great woman to be, pestilence, plague sores, and bile.

Snow, rustiness, rains and great rains, Even for the Greatest One joy, pestilence, sleepless: Seeds, plentiful grains, and more the bands, They will prepare themselves, enmity unallayed.

Between the Great Ones a great discord will arise, The noble Cleric will plot a great event: New sects to place in hatred and discord, All people will strive for war and change.

Secret conspiracy, perilous change, Factions to conspire secretly: Rains, great winds, for arrogant ones, Rivers to overflow, pernicious actions.

Plague to multiply, the Sects to quarrel with each other, Times moderated, winter, little return: Of mass and meeting house grievously to debate, Rivers to overflow, evils, deadly all around.

To the people of lower class in debates and quarrels, And through the women and defunct ones great war: Death of a Great Woman, to celebrate the scrofula, More great Ladies expelled from the land.

In widowhood as many males as females, The life of great monarchs to be in jeopardy: Plague, steel, famine, great peril, pell-mell,

Troubles through changes, lesser nobility to incite.

Hail, rust, rains, and great plagues, To preserve women, they will be the cause of the noise: Death of several through plague, steel, famine, through hatreds, The heavens will be seen, which is to say that it will be relit.

Not at all sufficient will be the grain,

The death approaches to snow more than white:

Sterility, grain rotted, the water abundant,

The great one wounded, several put to death on the flank.

War, of fruits nor grain, trees and scrub-brush, Great volatility, noble to spur on: As temporal as the young-lion-like prelate, D'ANDELOT to conquer, noble ones to draw back.

Everything changed, one to persecute four, Outside malady, morality very far: Of the four two more will not come to debate, Exile, ruin, death, famine, perplexity.

Of the great ones the greater number will not be so many, Great changes, commotions, steel, plague: The small estimate: lent, paid, content, Opposite month frost molests severely.

Severe frost, ice more than concord, Widows, matrons, fire, lament: Games, frolic, joy, Mars to incite discord, Through marriage good expectations.

Almanac of 1566

For the greatest ones death, loss of honor and violence, Professors of the faith, their estate and their sect: For the two great Churches diverse noise, decadence, Evil neighbors quarreling serfs of the Church without a head.

Waste, great loss, and not without violence, All those of the faith, more for religion,

The Greatest Ones will lose their lives, their honor and fortunes Both the two Churches, the sin in their faction.

For the two very Great Ones pernicious loss to arise, The Greatest Ones will cause loss, goods, of honor, and of life, As much great noises will run, the urn very odious, Great maladies to be, meeting-house, mass in envy.

The servants of the Churches will betray their Lords, Of other Lords also by the undivided of the fields: Neighbors of meeting-house and mass will quarrel amongst them, Rumors, noises to augment, to death are several lying.

Of all blessings abundance, the earth will produce for us, No din of war in France, sedition put outside: Man-slayers, robbers one will find on the highway, Little faith, burning fever, people in commotion.

Between people discord, brutal enmity, War, death of great Princes, several parts: Universal plague, stronger in the West, Times good and full, but very dry and exhausted.

The grains not to be plentiful, in all other fruits, plenty, The Summer, spring humid, winter long, snow, ice: The East in arms, France reinforces herself, Death of beasts much honey, the place to be besieged.

Through pestilence and fire fruits of trees will perish,

Signs of oil to abound. Father Denis not scarce:

Some great ones to die, but few foreigners will sally forth in attack,

Offense, Barbarian marines, and dangers at the frontiers.

Rains very excessive, and of blessings abundance, The cattle price to be just, women outside of danger: Hail, rain, thunder: people depressed in France, Through death they will work, death to reprove people.

Arms, plagues to cease, death of the seditious ones, Great Father Liber will not much abound: Evil ones will be seized by more malicious ones, France more than ever victorious will triumph.

Up to this month the great drought will endure, For Italy and Provence all fruits to half: The Great One less of enemies prisoner of their band, For the scroungers, Pirates, and the enemy to die.

The enemy so much to be feared to retire into Thrace,

Leaving cries, howls, and pillage desolated: To leave noise on sea and land, religion murdered, Jovial Ones put on the road, every sect to become angry.

Almanac of 1567

Death, malady for young women, head colds, From the head to the eyes a wretched deal of land: By sea misfortune, seeds bad, wine in mists, Much oil too much rain, molests the fruits, war.

Prisons, secrets: annoyances, discord between neighbors,

They will give life, through evil diverse catarrhs:

Death will ensue, poison will cause concord,

Terror, fear, great dread traveling will release from guarantees.

Prisons for enemies hidden and manifested, Travel will not hold, mortal enmity: Love three, secret hostility, public festival, The broken ruined, the water will break the quarrel.

The public enemies, nuptials and marriages, Death after, he grown rich through the deaths: The great friends will show themselves in the passage, Two sects to jabber, from surprise remorse later.

Through great maladies, religion offended, Through the infants and gifts of the Embassy: Gift given to worthless one, new law relaxed, Goods of old fathers, King in good country.

From the father it approaches the son: Magistrates called severe, The great nuptials, enemies mangling: The concealed put in front, through the faith of reproaches, The good friends and women against such grumblings.

Through the treasure, found -- the heritage of the father,

The Kings and Magistrates, the nuptials, enemies:

The public malevolent, the Judge and Mayor,

The death, fear and terror: and three Great Ones put to death.

Again the death approaches, Royal gift and Legacy, He will prepare what is, through old age in decay: The young heirs in suspicion of no legacy,

Treasure found in plasters and kitchen cookery.

The secret enemies will be imprisoned, The Kings and Magistrates will hold there a sure hand: The life of several, healthiness, malady in eyes and nose, The two great ones will go away very far at the bad hour.

Long debility in the head, nuptial, enemy, Through Prelate and journey, dream of the Great One terror: Fire and ruin, great one found in the oblique place, By torrent discovered, new error to come out.

The Kings and Magistrates through the deaths, the hand to place, Young girls sick, and of the Great Ones the body swells: All through languors and nuptials, enemy serfs for the master, The public sad, the Composer all swelled up.

On his return from the Embassy, the King's gift put in place.

He will do nothing more. He will be gone to God.

Close relatives, friends, brothers by blood,

[Will find him] Completely dead near the bed and the bench.

The Life of Nostradomus A Short Biography

Michel de Nostradame was born on December 14, 1503 at St. Remy in Provence, France to a family of He was taught a wide range of subjects by both his grandfathers. By the time that Michel began his formal education in Avignon, where he learned philosophy, grammar, and rhetoric, he was already well versed in classical literature, history, medicine, astrology (then a legitimate science), and herbal and folk medicine.

Nostradamus (the Latin version of his name) first became well known due to his novel and very successful treatment of bubonic plague, the infamous Black Death that ravaged France in the early 16th century. His innovative cure consisted basically of cleanliness and vitamin C. The first step when he entered a village was to have all of the corpses removed from the streets. He then prescribed for his patients plenty of fresh air, unpolluted water, and his "Rose Pills," which consisted of rose petals (and, perhaps, rose hips), sawdust from green cypress, iris, cloves, calamus, and lign-aloes. He did not allow his patients to suffer "bleeding," then a popular, although futile, treatment for everything from a minor cold to the Great Plague. He truly was successful in combating a disease for which there appeared to be no cure and no relief. It is estimated that over one-quarter of the entire population of Europe was killed by the Black Death during its sporadic visits. In 1537, plague struck Agen, where Nostradamus was living with his wife and two children. He confidently began to treat his fellow citizens but, unfortunately, was unable to save his family from his old enemy. Distraught and questioning his own abilities, Nostradamus began to wander through Europe aimlessly for the next six years. It was during this time that he first became aware of the awakening of his prophetic powers. When plague broke out in Aix, capital of Provence, for nine months Nostradamus again applied his proven skills to save as many of the populace as possible. After the plague dissipated, the city showed its gratitude by bestowing upon him a pension for life. Ten years after the death of his wife and children, Nostradamus settled in Salon and remarried, eventually fathering three daughters and three sons. He had the upper floor of his house transformed into a private study, where he installed his magical equipment: astrolabe, magic mirrors, divining rods, and a brass bowl and tripod, designed after the type used by the great Delphic oracles.

Under cover of night, he would retire to his study where he would sit before the tripod upon which simmered the brass bowl filled with water and pungent herbs (probably bay laurel or a combination of herbs). For a few years, Nostradamus struggled with the dilemma of whether he should make his findings public. In 1550, he published his first almanac of prophecies -- twelve four-line poems called "quatrains." Each quatrain gave a general prophecy for the coming year. The acclaim that he received due to the almanac encouraged Nostradamus to continue. He produced an almanac every year for the rest of his life.

His most famous work, The Centuries, was begun in 1554. Eventually these prophecies were to consist of ten volumes of 100 quatrains each. Centuries 1 through part of 4 were published in Lyons in 1555. The remainder of 4 and the subsequent Centuries through 7 were published later that same year. The last three were printed in 1558, but Nostradamus decided not to have them widely distributed. The Centuries have remained constantly in print for over 400 years.

In his own time as is true today, Nostradamus' quatrains have received mixed responses. The combination of French, Provencal, Greek, Latin, and Italian written as riddles, puns, anagrams, and epigrams are complex and demand that the potential interpreter have knowledge in a wide range of subjects. Many people from the 16th century through modern times have been enthralled by the prophecies and have tried to make sense of them. Some quatrains could fit descriptions of just about any era. Others are more exact, and it is those quatrains that have established the well-earned reputation of Nostradamus as one of the world's greatest prophets.

To the ignorant, closed mind, Nostradamus was a creature of the devil, babbling in cryptic, evil verse. From philosophers, Nostradamus continues to draw praise and curses. Poets remain perplexed by the meaning of his wild verses. Interpretation is open to all. Except for those prophecies that were fulfilled in his own time and acknowledged by the prophet himself, no one can give a final, definite interpretation to any of the prophecies that have yet to be fulfilled. This is an area that is open to individual, solitary study. Perhaps that was the intent.

According to witnesses, Nostradamus stayed alert to the end of his life, even though he was in great pain caused by arthritis, gout and dropsy. When his assistant wished him goodnight on July 1, 1566, Nostradamus replied, "You will not find me alive at sunrise." As one might expect, he had predicted his own death. In his last almanac, Nostradamus had written:

On his return from the Embassy, the King's gift put in place, He will do nothing more. He will be gone to God. Close relatives, friends, brothers by blood (will find him) Completely dead near the bed and the bench.

On the morning of July 2, the assistant escorted family and friends to the study, where Nostradamus had spent the previous night. They found his body on the floor between the bed and a bench that he had placed there for aid in getting out of bed. His wife carried out his last wishes, that he be interred standing upright and that his coffin be enclosed within the walls of the Church of the Cordeliers of Salon. The translation from Latin of the inscription on his tomb reads:

"Here rest the bones of the illustrious Michel Nostradamus, alone of all mortals, judged worthy to record with his near divine pen, under the influence of the stars, the future events of the entire world. He lived sixty-two years, six months and seventeen days. He died at Salon the in year 1566. Let not posterity disturb his rest. Anne Posart Gemelle wishes her husband true happiness." [From: by John Hogue]

His Method

Nostradamus used a variety of magical arts and tools to induce ecstatic trances. Visions came to him through flame or water gazing, sometimes both together. he also followed the practice of Branchus, a priestess of ancient Greece, requiring him to sit, spine erect, on a brass tripod, the legs of which were angled at the same degree as the Egyptian pyramids. The upright position, and possibly the use of nutmeg (a mild hallucinogen when consumed in sufficient quantity -- [deadly when the dose is too large]), stimulated the mind; the angle of the tripod legs was thought to create a bioelectric force which would sharpen psychic powers.

Or the prophet would stand or sit before a tripod that held a brass bowl filled with steaming water and pungent oils. "I emptied my soul, brain and heart of all care and attained a state of tranquillity and stillness of mind which are prerequisites for predicting by means of the brass tripod."

"Although the everlasting God alone knows the eternity of light proceeding from himself, I say frankly to all to whom he wishes to reveal his immense magnitude -- infinite and unknowable as it is -- after long and meditative inspiration, that it is a hidden thing divinely manifested to the prophet by two means: One comes by infusion which clarifies the supernatural light in the one who predicts by the stars, making possible divine revelation; the other comes by means of participation with the divine eternity, by which means the prophet can judge what is given from his (her) own divine spirit through God the Creator and natural intuition."

[Preceding from p. 34, by John Hogue. Above italics are mine.]

My own independently arrived at conclusion is that no magic is required for basic prophecy; prophetic ability isn't very eerie at all. Intense meditation would, of course, have been necessary for a prophet on the order of Nostradamus, one who was looking into the very far future. Ritual tools might have helped his concentration.

The art of prophecy seems (to me) to be comprised of studied, practiced mastery of the following (not necessarily in order of importance):

A thorough knowledge of the cycles of "history";

Careful, detached observation of the recent past and the present;

More than passing familiarity with basic human nature;

Meditation, contemplation -- ability to eliminate one's own thoughts, desires, biases; Inspiration;

Intuition, common sense, and compassion.

Keep in mind that a fulfilled prophecy is a failed prophecy. The great prophets didn't broadcast their predictions so that they could sit back and laugh, "I told you so!" They were issuing warnings about visions that, for the most part, they would rather not have seen.

Personally, I don't trust the results of many of today's so-called prophets or experts who charge high fees for seminar attendance, issue press releases, and mail or hand out brochures boasting about their own "success rates."

While I'm on the subject, those of you who are familiar with Dolores Cannon, a present-day Nostradamus "interpreter," might notice that I haven't used her work here. This is because her interpretations are purportedly "channeled" material. I do not discount all channeling. However, there's too much room for error. The channel might be innocently "channeling" her/his own subconscious thoughts and desires. More to the point, outright fraud is inherent in the field, unfortunately. If Ms. Cannon had published her interpretations as educated guesses, I would have given them more than a casual glance. This is not to say that I am accusing her of any malevolence.

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