What Is The Role Of The Rosslyn Chapel In The Grail Story?

Alex has done extensive research on the Rosslyn Chapel. Here is a summary of her findings.

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Rosslyn Chapel is the final part of Sophie Neveu and Robert Langdon’s journey and the place where Sophie will learn the truth about her family… although not the truth about the Holy Grail.

 

Although often connected in popular legend to the Knights Templar, Rosslyn Chapel was actually founded by Sir William St Clair, Earl of Rosslyn, in the 15th century at a time when the Templar Order had not existed for over a hundred years, although there were still small groups who saw themselves as inheritors of Templar wisdom and rituals.

 

The St Clair family did, however, have connections with the guild of masons – prior to the founding of the Order of Freemasons – and for a time during the early 17th century the current William St Clair (it seems that all the St Clair heirs were named William) was a kind of ‘protector’ of the local masonic branch. Extant documents show that his son, who was a rather more respectable character than his father, was formally designated an official patron of the masons. When the Order of Freemasons was founded, the St Clairs of Rosslyn were among the earlier members.

 

Simon Cox points out in Cracking the Da Vinci Code that members of the St Clair family had actually testified against the Knights Templar when some of its members were tried at Holyrood in Edinburgh in 1309. (One notes that this piece of information contradicts the claim that no Knights Templar were persecuted in Britain.)

 

Rosslyn Chapel is only about eight miles from Edinburgh in the village of Roslin in Lothian, where most of the inhabitants are so used to its just ‘being there’ that they have little curiosity about it, despite the fact that a reward has long been available to anyone able to decipher the large number of its symbols that remain shrouded in mystery. Weekly services continue to be held in the church, which is actually named Rosslyn Collegiate Church.

 

For those who enjoy collecting extraneous pieces of information, Dolly the sheep was cloned at the Roslin Institute.

 

Cox and Newman, among others, point out that the name ‘Rosslyn’ does not come from ‘Rose Line’ as reported in The Da Vinci Code, but from the Scottish words ‘ross’, meaning a hill or rocky excrescence, and ‘lynn’ meaning water or waterfall, both of which aptly describe Rosslyn’s situation.

 

There is indeed an underground chamber, a crypt, under Roslynn Chapel, where members of the St Claire family were buried over the centuries. The entrance to the crypt is well-known. It is beneath the flagstones of the north aisle of the chapel, but to this point excavations have not been allowed. There is no real evidence that the crypt contains documentary or any other kind of treasure, and the owners fear that the church – which has been neglected over many centuries – would suffer irreversible damage were it to be undermined.

 

The entire church is covered in carvings, and people sometimes express surprise that so little work has been done on deciphering the huge number of signs, symbols and carvings at Rosslyn Chapel, but this kind of work usually takes years, especially since many cryptographers work at unravelling such esoteric mysteries only in their spare time. Cox points out that cryptographers have been studying the Rosslyn symbols for a relatively short time.

 

People who have visited Rosslyn to make their own explorations have reported that they have been unable to find the pentacle on the floor of the chapel described by Dan Brown in The Da Vinci Code. Once again, one is reminded that The Da Vinci Code is a novel, not a work of non-fiction, and a novelist may embroider where he chooses.

 

In January 2003, the district branch of the Scottish Knights Templar announced that they would be using new scanning technology at Rosslyn Chapel that was capable of taking readings to a deep underground level. These readings would presumably indicate whether there were any crypts or vaults in addition to the burial crypt of the St Clair family which is already known, although not accessible today. There does not appear to have been any further news on this matter.

 

The Scottish Knights Templar are not an actual continuation of the Order of the Knights Templar which was destroyed in the early 14th century as a result of the persecutions of Philip IV of France and Pope Clement V, but see themselves as philosophically linked to the original Knights Templar and dedicated to perpetuating their ethic.

More answers here! 

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Where Is Mary Magdalene Buried?

The official Church version is that Mary Magdalene was buried in Ephesus and that in 899 the Emperor Leo VI had her relics transferred to a monastery in Constantinople.

 

This has the effect of keeping Mary Magdalene well away from Western Europe and any theories about the Sangreal, the bloodline of Jesus. But a strong contender in the burial probability stakes comes from Provence in France, where there is, as mentioned before, what amounts to a ‘Mary Magdalene industry’.

 

It was Gregory of Tours, chronicler of the Frankish kings in the late 6th century, who recorded the older tradition that Mary Magdalene died in Ephesus where she had lived for many years with Jesus’s mother, Mary, and John the Evangelist, thought to have been the author of the Fourth Gospel, the Gospel of John.

 

This account was, however, contradicted in a document in Latin (c. 5th to 6th century) which, referring to an earlier record, claimed that Mary Magdalene had travelled to Aix-le-Provence with Saint Maximin and had lived there for many years before she died in Aix at the age of 60.

 

In keeping with the mission of Jesus entrusted to Mary Magdalene and the apostles, she and Maximin had preached the gospel in Gaul, and Maximin had become the first Christian bishop in Gaul (usually referred to as Bishop Maximus). He placed her embalmed body in a crypt and had a Basilica built over it to honour and protect it.

 

The body was said to have been removed during the Saracen invasions as it was feared it would be discovered and destroyed. Rumour has it that part of the remains were taken to the French monastery of Vezelay in Burgundy, the church of which carried Mary Magdalene’s name.

 

Years later, a monk of the Vezelay monastery is reputed to have found a crypt at the Basilica of St Maximin’s in Provence. Reference to the Magdalene was chiselled into the stone.

 

 

Margaret Starbird draws attention to a published report that the Vatican sent an Apostolic Nuncio with six bishops and several priests to celebrate mass at the Basilica of Marie Madeleine in 1950 to honour the 700-year Jubilee of the discovery of her grave in Provence. She asks questions we would all like to have answered. What did the Catholic Church know about Mary Magdalene to induce them to participate in this event? How long had the Church Fathers known whatever it was that they seemed to know? And, since they were willing to lend support to the Jubilee, why were they at the same time continuing to discount the stories that placed Mary Magdalene in Provence both during her lifetime and after her death?

 

Certain documents favouring the Constantinople (Byzantium) account of Mary Magdalene’s burial place claim that part of her relics were transferred in the 9th century to the monastery Church of St Lazarus and that, some time after the final Crusade, were moved to Italy where they were buried beneath the altar of the Lateran Cathedral in Rome. Other documentation places part of her relics near Marseilles where, as mentioned, the splendid St Maximum’s Basilica was built over them.

Then there is the contention that Mary Magdalene’s remains were buried, along with secret documents, on Temple Mount in Jerusalem and were found when the city was conquered during the First Crusade.

 

Where, then, is Mary Magdalene buried? Legends, rumours and traditions – both oral and written – abound. Again, the only honest answer is: we don’t know.

 

– Is she buried in Ephesus in Turkey, as the Church believes… or does it?

 

– Was she buried on Temple Mount in Jerusalem, and were her remains moved to the West when the crusaders took Jerusalem?

 

– Is she buried under the Basilica of St Maximin?

 

– Are some of her bones hidden in a crypt at Vezelay?

 

– Or are her relics buried in more than one place?

 

Finally, could it really be that her bones are buried within the glass pyramid at the Louvre Museum? Of all possibilities, this is surely the most unlikely.

 

It would be understandable had some of her bones been placed in different burial places after her initial burial in order to ensure that at least some of them survived being discovered and removed and perhaps even destroyed.

 

Perhaps this mystery will also be solved in due course if contemporary documents are ever discovered.

 

 

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Who Were The Merovingian Kings?

Several of my readers have been asking about The Merovingian dynasty so I thought I'd do a bit more research and present the findings to you.

The Merovingian dynasty was real enough. Whether it stemmed from the bloodline of Christ or had any direct links with it is less certain, but it is a theory that has a substantial amount of support.

 

The ancestors of the Merovingians came from east of the river Rhine and established a kingdom in France. Their own folklore is somewhat fanciful and claims Troy as their origin, but there does not appear to be evidence to support this.

 

When the Roman Emperor Constantine moved the powerhouse of the Roman Empire east to Constantinople (Byzantium), the Western empire began to fall into decline, and various Germanic and Slavic groups (known collectively to history as “the Barbarians”) began to make steady encroachments. By the end of the fourth century, they controlled Rome itself.

 

One of these invading groups was the Franks who hailed from what is now Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands. It was the Franks who apparently claimed that they were descended from King Priam of Troy. The Merovingians were actually a group within the Franks, which is how they came to claim the same ancestry.

 

The first Merovingian king was Childeric who died in 482 and was succeeded by his son, Clovis, who was the first Christian Merovingian king. Clovis’s descendants spent a great deal of their time fighting among themselves, and assassinations were commonplace.

 

 

Sharan Newman comments in The real History behind the Da Vinci Code that the Merovingian kings – despite their tendency to die by an assassin’s hand – left so many offspring that she suspects that almost everyone of Western European ancestry can trace his or her ancestry back to one Merovingian king or another. She adds wryly that they might not want to admit it, since the Merovingians did have the best of reputations, so the suggested link between the descendants of Christ and the Merovingians is not quite as illustrious as might be expected and certainly no compliment to the House of Judah. In fact, so many theories about the Merovingian bloodline exist that the number of people alive today who have been considered possibilities strains the imagination.

 

Dagobert II was the last Merovingian king of any consequence, and the kingship eventually passed to the Carolingians. The dubious Dossiers Secrets apparently claims that the bloodline was carried down to the present day via a surviving child of Dagobert and exists today in the person of… Pierre Plantard, who is not mentioned in The Da Vinci Code but is very much part of its supporting mythology.

 

Plantard, self-proclaimed grand master of the Priory of Sion, died in 2000, by which time most of his claims had apparently been proved fraudulent. Support for them is supposedly contained in the Dossiers Secrets which in turn is supposedly housed in the Bibliothèque Nationale de Paris. Too many ‘ifs’ blur the picture for it to make any real sense, but it appears that Plantard somehow managed to mastermind a most engaging fraud while presenting himself as a well-spoken, aristocratic and dignified man who did not appear to be unduly seeking publicity. He has been accused of having had Nazi sympathies during World War II and of being anti-Semitic, but proof remains elusive. One thing that is known is that his claims of Merovingian descent are entirely without basis.

 

In The Da Vinci Code the Messianic bloodline is seen as continuing down to Godefroi de Bouillon, supposed founder of the Priory of Sion.

 

Laurence Gardner presents a genealogical table showing the descent of the first Merovingians from the Messianic source (Bloodline of the Holy Grail, p. 212). Readers interested in genealogy are likely to find the large number of genealogical charts in this book worth following up.

 

 

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32 Most Asked Da Vinci Code Questions Answered

As I turned the last page of the The Da Vinci Code I was both satisfied and unsatisfied. This brilliant book took my mind on a journey that excited and riveted my imagination.

So many thoughts raced through my head as I ploughed through page by page… often hours at a time.

Learn about Leonardo Da Vinci and his painting’s secrets

Whilst at first it sounds strange that a man who is arguably one of the most brilliant minds that has ever existed, was involved in an underground society… the truth about the artists of the renaissance period and how they communicated, will open your eyes to a whole new level of genius.

Answered… the Questions about the Da Vinci Code
That You Asked For!

The reason for me creating my brand new book was selfishly for my own benefit, as I wanted to know the answers to these age old questions. Then it dawned on me… that I am not the only one searching for answers, so I was inspired in this quest to help others find the answers to their own questions in this area.

And that is why, it’s not like any other book you’ve ever read on the factual history behind the Da Vinci Code.

Why?

Simply, every section in the book is there because “you asked for it.” Well, not “you” really. But from real live questions. Questions from people who loved the Da Vinci Code and wanted the answers to the pressing questions it created. A simple webpage was set up, and people like you visited it and left me their most pressing questions on ‘the questions you wanted answers to after reading the International Best Selling book.’

Then I got them answered for you!

Which means no fluff. Just the real answers you want to know.

Here are the Answers!