Rennes le Château and Shugborough by Shannon Dorey
Tour Magdala, Rennes le Château
©Shannon Dorey 2011
When I was at Rennes le Château in the south of France in the fall, the bottom of the Tower of Magdalene, shown above, and the staircase inside, reminded me of an ammonite or nautilus shell, marine animals of the cephalopod family. Based on my research on the Dogon religion, I believe that the alien Nummo were a type of cephalopod. (For more information on this refer to my book, Day of the Fish.)
This is important in the context of the Merovingians, who were associated with myths about alien beings, and whose ancestor Mérovée was descended from a sea creature.Dan Burstein. Secrets of the Code. The Unauthorized Guide To the Mysteries Behind the Da Vinci Code. (New York, NY. CDS, 2004.) p. 348. Ammonite shells are also on display in the museum at Rennes le Château. If one was unfamiliar with the history, these shells would seem quite out of place in the context of the other artefacts associated with the church and the parish priest Berenger Saunière.
My research reveals that the pre-Christian pagan religion, which had been practised by the Merovingians and demonized by the Roman Catholic Church may have been secretly practised at Rennes le Château in France. I believe that secretive political meetings were also held there involving the exiled Stuarts, who had been in France since the execution of Charles 1 in 1649. The connection is important because the Stuarts were part of the Merovingian bloodline.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln, p. 434. The goal of this political group was to help the exiled Stuarts attempt to reclaim the English throne.
In my previous article on the Shugborough Shepherd's Monument, I discussed a Masonic and Rosicrucian connection between the monument at Shugborough and Rennes le Château. I believe that both locations were associated with the Merovingians and the pre-Christain pagan religion.
The artist Poussin, who had created the original painting of the Shepherds monument, was likewise connected to this political group. The Shepherd's Monument at Shugborough was designed in reverse to Poussin's "Les Berger d'Arcadie" (Shepherds of Arcadia) which was painted in 1637-39.
In the early 1970's the actual tomb, which appears in Poussin's painting of the Shepherds monument, was discovered on the outskirts of Arques approximately six miles from Rennes le Château.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p.39.
Rennes le Château has a long history with the Merovingians. The most famous of all Merovingians was Mérovée's grandson Clovis I, who was king of the Franks between 481 and 511.
It was under Clovis that the Merovingians first converted to Christianity creating a "new Roman empire - a Christian empire, based on the Roman Church and administered, on the secular level, by the Merovingian bloodline." Clovis was baptised by Saint Remy at Rheims.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p.256.
I believe that this alliance and Clovis' conversion created a schism within the Merovingian families. The Visigoths disagreed with it and Clovis fought them driving them back to Carcassone and eventually to their last remaining bastion, in the Razès, at Rhédae, which is now Rennes le Château.
After Clovis died, his son Dagobert II was kidnapped by Grimoald, the Mayor or the Palace. Instead of murdering him, Dagobert II was sent to live in exile in Celtic Ireland so that Grimoald's own son could acquire the throne.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p.257.
Like the Visigoths, the Irish had refused to give up their beliefs and convert to Christianity. My research has shown many similarities between Irish Celtic religious symbols and the symbols used by the African Dogon in association with the Nummo.Dorey, Day of the Fish pp. 28-31. These are the same symbols that were used by the Albigensians (Cathars) and associated with the Merovingians.
Dagobert II was educated at Slane in Ireland and he later married Mathilde, a Celtic princess.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p.257. After she died, Dagobert II's friend, Wilfred of York, who was a Catholic Bishop, encouraged him to marry Giselle de Razès, niece of the King of the Visigoths. Wilfred believed it would provide the Roman Catholic Church with an alliance in the Visigoth kingdom.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p.260.
Dagobert married his second wife Giselle in 671 at her official residence at Rennes le Château in the church of St. Madeleine (Mary Magdalene). This is the location of the same church that was restored by the Catholic priest Bérenger Saunière in 1897.
Instead of promoting the Church's agenda, Dagobert II proved to be his own person and by 679 he had made a number of powerful enemies in the area. It was the Mayor of the palace, Pepin the Fat who eventually had him murdered, which ended that branch of the Merovingian bloodline.
I believe that the pre-Christian religion associated with the Merovingians was still practised openly there until the Albigensian Crusade of 1209, when the Catholic Church of Rome called for crusaders to attack Languedoc in the south of France. This area of France was one of the most advanced cultural centres of Europe at the time.Shannon Dorey, Day of the Fish p.232. "The extermination was so extensive it constituted one of the first genocides in modern European history. In one town, for example, fifteen thousand men, women, and children were slaughtered wholesale-many of them in the sanctuary of the church. When an officer inquired of the Pope's representative how he might distinguish heretics from true believers, the reply was, `Kill them all. God will recognize his own.'"Dan Sewell Ward The Albigensian Crusade http://www.halexandria.org/dward220.htm
Even after the Albigensian Crusade, my research shows that individuals still practised this religion in Europe right up until the Inquisition and the Witch Trials. While the earliest witch trial occurred in 1324, the peak of the witch hunt was between 1580 and 1630 and the last known trial occurred in 1782. Many of those individuals who survived the purging by the Church likely converted to Catholiscism to protect themselves from the Church. Others were involved with secret organizations including the Rosicrucians.
The Rosicrucian tracts claimed the existence of a secret brotherhood found by one Christian Rosenkreuz, who was born in 1378 and died in 1484.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p.126. Andrea apparently created a network of secret societies known as Christian Unions. Each society was headed by an anonymous prince, assisted by twelve others divided into groups of three with each being a specialist in a given field of study.
The primary focus of the Christian Unions was to preserve threatened knowledge and scientific advances that the Church deemed heretical. Scholars, scientists, philosophers and esotericists found a haven in these unions and many were smuggled through them to safety in England, where they became closely associated with Masonic circles. They were intimate with Robert Moray, Elias Ashmole and Robert Boyle.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p.147.
According to Bayley, the heresies of the Albigensians (Cathars) were thought to have been stamped out by the Papacy but in fact it was French Albigensian refugees who introduced paper-making into England. At the time Bayley was writing his book (in the early 1900s), the makers of the paper used for the Bank of England's notes were descendants of the De Portal family of Provence, many of whose members were recorded as having been "amongst the most active of the leaders of the Albigeois [Albigensians]."
The founder had fled to England after the Revocation of the edict of Nantes in 1685, which had exterminated most of the Huguenots, whom Pope Clement XI, had identified with the Albigensians. He died there in 1704. The headquarters of the Huguenots were Auvergne, Angoumois and the Southern Province of France where in Angoumois alone, they had owned six hundred paper mills. In Glasgow one of the first refugees from France also succeeded in establishing a paper-mill, which was the first in that part of Scotland.Shannon Dorey, Day of the Fish p.244.
It was the alchemical and Rosicrucian movement in connection with the Masonic Society that identified these secret religious and political groups.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p.126. The Rosicrucian manifestos promised a transformation of the world and of human knowledge in relation to esoteric, heremetic principles.
One of the tracts was the Chemical Wedding of Christian Rosenkreuz written in 1616 by German theologian Johann Valentin Andrea, an alleged Grand Master of another secret organization known as the Prieur de Sion.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln pp.144-145. Andrea admitted to writing the Chemical Wedding of Christian Rosenkreuz in 1616.
In the Dogon religion, androgyny was associated with immortality. Lébé's birth represented the Nummo removing some of their DNA from humanity and in the process turning humans into single-sexed beings. It was believed that over time humans would regain their androgyny and their immortality. I believe that the Chemical Wedding may be an allegory for this and that religious Bride and Bridegroom myths are associated with our lost androgyny.
On Mary's feast day, July 22, the Catholic Church traditionally read from the Canticles (Song of Songs 3:2-4), the story of the Bride searching for the Bridegroom/Beloved, from whom she has become separated.Dorey, Day of the Fish p.90
In Day of the Fish and The Nummo, I associate myths about Mary Magdalene with the Mistress of Speech, who was the Christ figure in the Dogon religion. She was an immortal hermaphrodite but associated with the sacred feminine.
The Mistress of Speech was part human and part Nummo and because of this she was identified as a twin. Her human part represented the male sex and her Nummo part represented the female sex. From head to waist she was human and below that she was serpent and fish-like.
The Mistress of Speech was also symbolized by the colour red, and may be the source of the symbolism associated with a document titled Le Serpent Rouge that was found in October, 1997, in Rennes le Château. Researchers Marcus Williamson and Corella Hughes first became aware of the existence of Le Serpent Rouge in an appendix to Genesis by David Wood.Le Serpent Rouge http://www.connectotel.com/rennes/serpnote/serpf.htm Marcus Williamson and Corella Hughes
In early church history, Christ was secretly said to have been a twin. Lincoln points out that behind the altar in the church at Rennes le Château are statues of two baby Jesuses. The one on the right is held by Mary, the one on the left by Joseph. Mary Magdalene appears on the altar in front with a skull, a Masonic symbol. (See below) According to Lincoln, the twin of Jesus was Thomas.Henry Lincoln's Guide to Rennes le Château. DVD. 2000. Illuminated Word. 2005. The Disinformation Company Ltd.
Two baby Jesuses on either side of the altar which depicts Mary Magdalene in red with a skull© Robert Hill 2011
I included this next picture in Day of the Fish because Mary Magdalene is in red and appears to have a fish tail. This painting was created some time between 1625 and 1650 by Georges de La Tour. Mary has a skull on her lap and she looks into a mirror. Mermaids holding mirrors is an important image found in both Celtic and Albigensian symbolism.
Mary Magdalene, Georges de La Tour 1625-1650
The area around Rennes le Château in the south of France was the religious and political historical centre for those Merovingians who had gone against the Papacy. The Catholic priest Bérenger Saunière, who had grown up in the area at the village of Montazels a few miles away, became the parish priest of Rennes le Château in 1885.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p. 24.
Bérenger Saunière's association with the area could explain how he became involved with the Masonic Society and the Rosicrucians. He may have secretly practised the pagan religion of the Albigensians. It may also explain the significance of the wreath with the upside down keys that Saunière had put over the entrance way to the church at Rennes le Château shown below. The wreath with upright keys is a Masonic symbol.
According to Alan Scott, this is the crest of Pope Leo XIII.http://www.rennes-discovery.com/doorway_crests.htm Alan Scott.
This association with Pope Leo XIII is important in the context of the Masonic Society, science and hermeticism. On February 20 1878, Leo XIII was elected to succeed Pope Pius IX. Leo XIII worked to encourage an understanding between the Church and the modern world, which had been damaged by Pius IX's uncompromising Syllabus of Errors.
The Syllabus of Errors had been "issued in 1864 condemning as heresy 80 propositions, many on political topics, which were at the foundation of scientific, rational secular society." One of the propositions included condemning secret societies including Freemasonry. He also objected to the statement that human reason was "...the sole arbiter of truth and falsehood, and of good and evil".
Pope Leo XIII firmly re-asserted the scholastic doctrine that science and religion co-existed together. He even opened some of the Vatican archives to screened historians. In later years his bull Apostolicae Curae of 1896 condemned Freemasonry, suggesting a reversal of his earlier statements.http://psychcentral.com/psypsych/Pope_Leo_XIII Dr. John Grohol Psych Central
It was in 1897 that renovations began at Rennes le Château. The Pope's sudden reversal in policy could explain why the Masonic symbol of the wreath and the keys were created and shown flipped to that of the Pope's crest.
A similar wreath also appears on the Original Visigothic Pillar that used to support the old altar in the church at Rennes le Château. It can now be found in the museum there and is shown below. The left side of the cross depicts the wreath with the crossed lines. One line is inside the wreath and one line is outside of the wreath. This is identical to a wreath that appears on the Shugborough monument at Lichfield in England.
The front of the Visigothic Pillar depicts a Masonic cross and is dated 1681. The cross had been displayed upside down in the church. The inscription "Mission 1861" had been added to the foot of the upside down cross by the priest Bérenger Saunière. It was one of two Visigothic stone pillars which had supported the original white marble altar in the church. He made these changes to the cross when he removed the pillars that supported the altar. The picture shown above is the only one of the two pillars that still remains.http://www.rennes-discovery.com/visigothic_pillar.htm Alan Scott When the cross is shown upright in its correct position, as it is in this picture, it reveals the date 1681.http://www.rennes-discovery.com/visigothic_pillar4.htm Alan Scott Photo by © Ren‚ Meyer 2003.
The date 1681 relates to one of the ciphers associated with Rennes le Château that made reference to "Peace 681" that was discussed in The Holy Blood and The Holy Grail.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p.26. In Freemasonry, "Royal and Select Masters" date years from the year in which the Temple of Solomon was completed. It is called Anno Depositionis (A.D.) - "In the year of the Deposit" and adds 1000 to the common time.http://www.royalarchmasons.on.ca/Calendar/rsm.htm Royal Arch Masons of Canada in the Province of Ontario Therefore the year "681" in the cipher becomes "1681" relating to the year on the cross. "Royal and Select Masters" are related to a cryptic form of Freemasonry.
According to Paul M. Bessel, "the Cryptic degrees are centered on stories involving a vault or crypt where certain treasures were hidden beneath King Solomon's Temple in Jerusalem for very specific purposes." One theory is that the Jacobite Masons created the Cryptic Rite. The association of the Shugborough monument with Rennes le Château, the cipher and the Visigothic pillar would support this theory.
Bessel further reports that,"the Stuart exiles living in France in the early 1700's, sometimes called 'Jacobites' from the Latin form of the name for James, were involved in Freemasonry. Some Masonic lodges in France and Italy were made up completely of Jacobites, and the grandson of James II, 'Bonnie Prince Charlie' was definitely an active Mason. In 1745, the same year he attempted to invade England, he became the Grand Master of the Masonic Knights Templar, and also formed a Chapter of Rose Croix."
The Jacobite Masons "considered the death of Hiram Abiff to represent the execution by the English Parliament of Charles I, the father of James II, and the raising of Hiram Abiff to represent the coming restoration to the English throne of the Stuart Kings. The 'Royal Master' was the Stuart claimant to the throne, who was called by some the 'Pretender' to the throne (at first James II, then his son James III, and then the grandson, Charles), and the secret vault was the place where the Jacobites plotted their return to power. The 'Select Masters' were the closest companions of the 'Pretender.' The ritual of the 'Select Master's' degree can easily be seen to be that of a secret political movement, if one believes this theory," Bessel reported.http://www.bessel.org/cryptic.htm Some Basic Information About Cryptic Masonry Paul M. Bessel 1998.
>A political crisis that followed the death of Cromwell in 1658 resulted in a temporary restoration of the Stuart monarchy when Charles II was invited to return to Britain.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_II_of_England The peace of 1681 that was being referred to in the cipher was when Charles II dissolved the English Parliament to prevent parliament from passing the Exclusion Bill, which would have prevented Charles' brother James II from being the heir to the throne.
Since Charles didn't have any legitimate children, parliament feared James II would become heir thereby bringing a Catholic king to the English throne. James II had refused to become a protestant like his brother Charles to appease parliament. After the dissolution of the Parliament of 1681, no further Parliaments were called. Charles, whose popularity was very high at the time, allowed James II to return to England in 1682.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_II_of_England
The political groups associated with the Masons were probably created around the time of Charles I execution in 1649. Records show that Elias Ashmole had been sworn in to Operative Masonic groups in London and in Warrington, which was in Lancashire in 1646. The group associated with Staffordshire in Lichfield, Ashmole's birthplace, had to have been formed around the same time or perhaps even earlier. These associations are important considering the connections between Rennes le Château and the Shugborough monument in Staffordshire in Lichfield.
Baigent, Leigh and Lincoln reported that Staffordshire had been a hot bed for Masonic activity in the early and mid-seventeenth century and that in 1688, shortly before he had been deposed, James II had created the Radclyffes, earls of Derwentwater.
Charles Radclyffe, who was born in 1693, founded the first Masonic lodge on the continent. His mother had been an illegitimate daughter of Charles II by his mistress, Moll Davies. Radclyffe was thus on his mother's side of royal blood- a grandson of the next to last Stuart monarch. He was a cousin of Bonnie Prince Charles and of George Lee, Earl of Lichfield- another illegitimate grandson of Charles II.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p. 148-149.
When Charles Radclyffe, who was also an alleged Grand Master of the Prieuré de Sion,Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln pp.133. escaped from Newgate Prison in 1714, he was aided by his cousin, the Earl of Lichfield. In 1746, Charles Radclyffe died beneath the headsman's axe at the Tower of London. This was approximately 14 or 15 years before the Shugborough monument was built.
This would suggest that Lichfield's earlier connection with Rennes le Château later became used to provide a meeting place for the exiled Jacobites and their English sympathisers. I believe that the secret Operative Masonic society associated with the Shepherd's monument at Shugborough in Lichfield had been started by Elias Ashmole, who had been born in Lichfield, Staffordshire, England, 23 May 1617, and died in South Lambeth (London) in 1692.http://freemasonry.bcy.ca/texts/EliasAshmole.html Grand Lodge of Yukon and British Columbia. Elias Ashmole
Rosslyn Chapel in Scotland was likely a third meeting place for this political group as the Sinclairs were also connected to the Merovingian bloodline. The heads found on the top of the Shugborough monument are related to the carvings of the "Master Mason" and "The Apprentice" found in the Rosslyn Chapel, which is likewise associated with the Masonic Society and the Knights Templar.
It was believed the original carving of "The Apprentice" in the Rosslyn Chapel had been altered and the individual in the sculpture originally had had a full beard. According to Scottish Templar historian Chev. Robert Brydon, the carving was very likely originally not that of an "apprentice" at all, as in ancient and medieval times only Master Masons were allowed to sport full beards, which implies the original carving was that of a "murdered Master" and not a "murdered apprentice".http://www.ancientquest.com/deeper/2002-krm-
rosslyn.html Mysteries of Rosslyn Chapel,the Templars and the Grail, Dr. Karen Ralls, FSA Scot.
This would associate the carving with Hiram Abiff, the murdered architect of Solomon's Temple, who symbolically represented the executed Charles I. The sculpture of the "Master Mason" may have been altered in the 1600 or 1700s to protect its association with Charles I and the Jacobite uprising. The story about the murdered apprentice was probably fabricated at that time. Neither head on the Shugborough monument has a beard which would fit with this theory.
I believe that the famous Rosslyn statue of the Apprentice's Pillar is a symbol of DNA. The eight serpent dragons at its base are associated with the Eight Nummo Ancestors of the Dogon religion, who were part human and part Nummo and represented the genetic inheritance of humanity. What is particularly fascinating about the Rosslyn Chapel is that it exists in the same village as the Roslin Institute. It was in the Roslin Institute where cloning first made its debut with Dolly the sheep in 1996.
Apprentice's Pillar © Bob Hill 2005
The Eight Nummo Ancestors found on the pillar are identified with the dragons of time. The pillar is associated with the second biological engineering experiment in the Dogon religion that caused humans to be separated from immortality.
In the Dogon religion, the Eight Ancestors were connected to a story of forbidden love that destroyed the genetic engineering experiment the Nummo had perfected. The experiment provided humans with the ability to regain their immortality, as long as procreation was controlled. The affair caused the Ancestors to be expelled from the Nummo's world and to have to return to Earth.
Masonic historical records indicate that James II, King of Scotland, had appointed William Sinclair, Baron of Roslyn, head and governor of the Masons "...The king wanted this dignity to be hereditary in his family and to belong to those that succeeded the barons of Roslyn (2). The title remained, indeed, in the family of Sinclair until in the year 1736, the time when the Grand Lodge of Saint John of Edinburgh was established."http://members.optusnet.com.au/skyecn/althory.htm Translation Stuart Nettleton 1999. A Chronology of the History of Freemasonry.
It further reported, "Masonry flourished under the kings of Scotland who succeeded James II. James VI particularly protected it."http://members.optusnet.com.au
/skyecn/althory.htm Translation Stuart Nettleton 1999. A Chronology of the History of Freemasonry.
Baigent, Leigh and Lincoln, authors of The Holy Blood and The Holy Grail, reported that the Sinclair family was the Scottish branch of the Norman Saint-Clair/Gisors family. Their domain at Rosslyn was only a few miles from the former Scottish headquarters of the Knights Templar. The chapel at Rosslyn was built between 1446 and 1486 and was long associated with both Freemasonry and the Rose-Croix or Rosicrucians.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p.190.
Baigent, Leigh and Lincoln further reported that in 1613 Frederick of the Palatinate had married Elizabeth Stuart. She was daughter of James I of England, granddaughter of Mary Queen of Scots and great grand daughter of Marie de Guise and de Guise was the cadet branch of the house of Lorraine. Marie de Guise, a century before, had been married to the duke of Longueville and then, on his death, to James V of Scotland. This created a dynastic alliance between the house of Stuart and Lorraine. After Frederick's marriage to Elizabeth Stuart, he established an esoterically oriented court at his capital at Heidelberg. This culture was defined by Frances Yates as "Rosicrucian".
"The Frederickian movement was an attempt to give those currents politico-religious expression, to realize the ideal of Hermetic reform centered on a real prince. It created a culture, a 'Rosicrucian' state with its court centered on Heidelberg."Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln pp.145-146.
During Cromwell's Protectorate, those scientists and intellectuals associated with the Rosicrucian movement, both English and European, "formed what Boyle - in a deliberate echo of the 'Rosicrucian' manifestos- called an 'invisible college'. And with the restoration of the monarchy in 1660, the 'invisible college' became the Royal Society."Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p.148.
Charles II had been instrumental in getting the society its charter in 1662 and became a member of the group.http://www-groups.dcs.st-and.ac.uk/~history/Societies/RS.html The Royal Society. http://www-history.mcs.st-andrews.ac.uk/Societies/FILENAME.html The common theme among the scientists who began the Royal Society was acquiring knowledge by experimental investigation. The first group of such men included Robert Moray, who was one of the earliest on record to be inducted into a Masonic lodge in 1641,http://freemasonry.bcy.ca/texts/EliasAshmole.html Robert Boyle, who was listed as another alleged Grand Master of the Prieuré de Sion,Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p.133. John Wilkins, John Wallis, John Evelyn, Christopher Wren and William Petty.http://www-groups.dcs.st-and.ac.uk/~history/Societies/RS.html The Royal Society. http://www-history.mcs.st-andrews.ac.uk/Societies/FILENAME.html Elias Ashmole had also been a founding member of the Royal Society.Gerry Rose,"The Venetian Takeover of England and Its Creation of Freemasonry http://www.mystae.com/restricted/
Virtually all the Royal Society's founding members were Freemasons. It was argued in The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail that the Royal Society was a Masonic institution - derived through Johann Valentine Andrea's Christian Unions, from the 'invisible Rosicrucian brotherhood.'Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p.148.
The first European prince to become a Mason and to publicize his Masonic affiliations was François Duke of Lorraine who was initiated in 1731 at The Hague by Jean Desaguliers, a friend of Newton's. Newton was alleged to have been another Grand Master of the Prieuré de Sion.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p.133. In 1735 François married Maria Theresa of Austria and linked the house of Habsburg and Lorraine and inaugurated the Habsburg-Lorraine dynasty. He was at this time the Holy Roman Emperor. His court at Vienna became Europe's Masonic capital. He also spent time in England and became a member of the Gentleman's Club of Spalding.
François, who was a practising alchemist, also had an alchemical laboratory in the imperial palace, the Hofburg. When he became grand duke of Tuscany, he was able to prevent the Inquisition's harassment of Freemasons in Florence.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln pp.153-154. It was because of François' protection, that Charles Radclyffe, who had founded the first Masonic lodge on the continent, had been able to leave behind his Masonic legacy.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln p.133.
According to Baigent, Leigh and Lincoln, the Archduke Johann von Habsburg, cousin of Franz-Josef, Emperor of Austria had visited the parish priest Berenger Saunière at Rennes le Château in the late 1800s. They had opened consecutive bank accounts with the Archduke making a substantial transfer to Saunière's account. Saunière used the money to redecorate the church.Michael Baigent, Richard Leigh and Henry Lincoln pp.29-30.
There were various changes made in the church including the addition of the statue of Asmodeus or Ashmedai, the statue of the angels and salamanders, the creation of the crest of Leo III over the archway, and the building of the statue of St. John baptising Christ with the letter "M" hanging from his cross.http://www.rennes-discovery.com Alan Scott 2005 This association of the Masonic Habsburg's with Rennes le Château is important because it reiterates Rennes le Château's connection with the Masonic Society and the Shugborough monument. For more information of this refer to my first article on Shugborough and my next article on the pagan religion The Witch's Hammer and the Place of the Witch, which is the meaning of the name Shugbrough. You may also wish to read another article relating to a Masonic anagram found on the Shugborough Monument.
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