Once more the world is believed to be ending on December 21, 2012. This time it is believed to have been the prediction of our famous prophet from the 16th century, Nostradamus (Michel de Nostredame)
The year 1999, seventh month,
From the sky will come a great King of Terror:
To bring back to life the great King of the Mongols,
Before and after Mars to reign by good luck.
While it is unclear how this Nostradamus quatrain (four-line verse) describes that a rogue planet will impact the Mediterranean on December 21, 2012, causing great destruction, the “academic” sources behind this are bringing together the Mayan calendar, the Julian to Gregorian conversion, as well as Nostradamus to provide us with the latest prediction of the worldwide great destruction.
Nostradamus has been credited with accurately predicting dozens of historical world events, including the French Revolution in 1789 and Napoleon; the space shuttle Challenger accident in 1986; Adolph Hitler and the bombing of Hiroshima, Japan, in 1945; the 9-11 attack; the JFK and RFK assassinations; the Apollo moon landing in 1969; the death of Princess Diana; and just about everything else that has happened since the time of his predictions. There are of course those who consider the predictions to largely be the result of misinterpretations and deliberate mistranslations.
The reality is that he remains well known more than 400 years after his death, mostly due to a rare book that was published in part, titled Les Propheties (The Prophecies). This original French edition is impossible to find. The complete collection of verses , grouped into nine sets of 100 and one of 42, was posthumously published in 1568 in Lyons, France by Benoist Rigaud. A close to being complete copy of this book was sold by Christies in a London auction in 1995 for £1,035; twice the then estimated value.
The first English edition titled The True Prophecies or Prognostications of Michael Nostradamus, Physician to Henry II. Francis II. and Charles IX. Kings of France, and One of the Best Astronomers That Ever Were: a Work Full of Curiosity and Learning. Translated and Commented by Theophilus de Garencieres, Doctor in Physick Colleg. Lond., was published in London by Thomas Ratcliffe and Nathaniel, in the year 1672. A solid copy of this work containing the scarce engraved frontispiece portrait, often not present, was sold recently for £9,750 by Peter Harrington of Chelsea, London. The translator Theophilus Garencieres (1610-1680), was a French physician who came to England with the French ambassador in the 1650s, and settled in after leaving the Catholic Church in order to publish mostly medical books. His edition of Nostradamus gives the French text of each quatrain followed by the English translation, along with some short useful notes. Later editions were published under the name Centuries, which together constitute the largest body of prophetic verse prepared in all of literature.
More than any other writer in modern times Nostradamus knew how to titillate the vast craving of humanity to foresee the future, whether being immediate or distant. Though widely regarded as a prophet by the public, the experts that have studied Nostradamus’ works believe that most of the amazing prophecies attributed to him are merely the result of poor linguistic and historical scholarship. Despite all that, the French physician’s, astrologer’s and prophet‘s name has remained relevant over the centuries by blending scholarly learning with folklore and religious sentiment, in a highly poetic and innovative language.
Thanks to the interpreters of Les Propheties, a great deal of the inhabitants on planet Earth will be anxiously awaiting the 21st day of the month to find out whether the Nostradamus prediction was yet another misinterpretation. One prediction that is sure to turn out true is that the Nostradamus rare book will keep getting more valuable as time goes by.