There have been many notable prophets throughout history. Some of these appear in religious texts, such as the Bible, while others are found within the academic world of philosophy or sciences. One of the most reputable and well-known prophets is Nostradamus. We’re going to take a look at the life of this man, touching on his background and the beginnings of his prophetic works. We’ll then go on to look at some Nostradamus predictions, including those that have come true and those that are still to be fulfilled. How did Nostradamus die? Well, we’ll take a look at that too.
Who was Nostradamus?
Most of the world has heard of Nostradamus, even if they aren’t sure of exactly who he is or what he did. ‘Nostradamus’ is actually a Latinized version of the name ‘Nostredame’, as in Michael de Nostradame, which is the name he was given at birth in December 1503.
The early life of Michael de Nostradame is rather normal. He was one of 9 children born into the recently Catholic (originally Jewish) family. They lived in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, France and Michael would have been educated by his maternal grandmother. At the age of 14 he attended the University of Avignon, but the school was closed down less than 2 years later due to an outbreak of the plague.
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Nostradamus entered the University of Montpellier in 1529 but was expelled. He had a tendency to explore the medicinal benefits of apothecary, a practice which was banned by the university’s statutes. He would often denounce the work of doctors and others in the medical field, suggesting that his work would prove more beneficial to patients.
Stepping into Prophecy
After marrying and having 6 children, Nostradamus started to move away from the field of medicine as occultism began to grab his interest. He explored the use of horoscopes, good luck charms, and prophecies. Inspired by what he discovered and learned; Nostradamus started work on his first Almanac in 1550. This turned out to be an immediate success and so he published another the following year, aiming to do so annually.
These first two Almanacs are said to have contained over 6 thousand prophecies. However, his visions of the future didn’t match up with what religious groups were preaching, and so Nostradamus soon found himself the enemy of these groups. In an effort to avoid appearing blasphemous or competitive, all future Nostradamus predictions were written in ‘Virgilianised’ syntax. This term comes from an ancient Roman poet named Publius Virgilius Maro.
Each prophecy, in essence, was a word game. It had the appearance of a riddle and would often adopt words or phrases from various languages, such as Greek, Latin, and others. This disguised the true meaning of each prophecy so that only those truly committed to learning their meaning could take the time to interpret them.
Nostradamus Predictions that Came True
We can divide the Nostradamus prophecies into two groups: those that have come true and those that are still to take place. We’ll explore the former of these groups first in order to demonstrate just how scarily accurate Michael de Nostredame actually was. Sadly, these prophecies are most notable when they warn of terrible and destructive events.
From the depths of the West of Europe, A young child will be born of poor people, He who by his tongue will seduce a great troop; His fame will increase towards the realm of the East.
Many people believe that this passage, which was written in the 1550s, references the rise of Adolf Hitler and the beginnings of World War 2. Hitler was born to a poor family in Austria, and after serving in the army during the first world war, he charismatically rose up through political parties until he had the power to create the Nazis.
Let’s take a look at another passage:
Near the gates and within two cities, there will be scourges the like of which was never seen, Famine within plague, people put out by steel, Crying to the great immortal God for relief.
When it comes to Nostradamus predictions, this is one of the most chilling examples. People believe that this is a reference to the dropping of atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki (“within two cities). This act ushered in a level of destruction unexperienced by the world (“of which was never seen”), and to someone such as Nostradamus, the impact of this weapon would surely have looked like a type of plague, one that leaves people crying out to God for relief.
Nostradamus Predictions that are Still to Come True
We’ve looked at a few examples of predictions coming true, but what did Nostradamus predict that hasn’t happened yet? How did Nostradamus die, and was his death related to his prophecies? Let’s take a look!
Some of these predictions are worrying, such as the one that seems to suggest that zombies will become a real thing and not just the product of horror movies:
Not far from the age of the millennium, when there is no more room in hell, the buried shall come out of their graves.
Other prophecies may be happening as we speak. This example seems to refer to climate change and the impact that deforestation is having on the planet’s atmosphere:
The kings will steal the forests, the sky will open and the fields will be burnt by the heat.
Another seems to speak of a mighty earthquake taking place in California. He uses astrological events as a way of dating when this event will happen. Aspects of this prediction confuse readers, but let’s look at it anyway:
The sloping park, great calamity, Through the Lands of the West and Lombardy, The fire in the ship, plague, and captivity; Mercury in Sagittarius, Saturn fading.
How did Nostradamus die?
We’ve explored the prophetic powers of Michel de Nostedame, but was he able to use these powers in relation to his own future? Gout had plagued the man for many years, but in 1566 it finally became too much for his body to handle as it led to edema.
Sensing the nearing of his death, Nostradamus created a will in order to leave his fortune to his wife and children. On July 1st, late in the evening, Nostradamus allegedly told his secretary that he would not be alive when she comes to check on him in the morning. Sure enough, he was found dead the following dead. His prophetic work still amazes people even to this day.