Nostradamus Birth Anniversary: Five surprising things to know about the French astrologer

While the connection between Nostradamus, his future predictions and the controversies surrounding it is widely known, there are some surprising facts about his life you should know.

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Tuesday, December 13, 2022, 08:05 PM IST
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Nostradamus | Marca

Michel de Nostredame or popularly known as Nostradamus was a French astrologer, physician and reputed seer who is best known for his boom Les Prophéties which is a collection of over 900 quatrains which purportedly predicts future. 

The French astrologer was born in December of 1503, but there are debates on the date he was born. Many estimate that he was born between December 14-21 however his birthday is widely celebrated on December 14.

Supporters of the French seer believe his predictions about world happenings like the Great London Fire, French Revolution, rise of Adolf Hitler and Napoleon and also like Apollo Moon landing, Princess Diana’s death and September 11 attack on World Trade Centre.

While the connection between Nostradamus, his future predictions and the controversies surrounding it is widely known, there are some surprising facts about his life you should know. Ahead of his birth anniversary, let’s take a look at them:

Nostradamus’ family was originally Jewish and had only converted to Catholic Christianity a generation before his birth.

He went to two Universities but could not complete his study because when he was a student at the University of Avignon, it shut down because of plague and when he entered University of Montpellier to get his doctorate, he was nearly immediately barred because he had previously worked as an apothecary [trade forbidden by the varsity statutes].

Nostradamus began writing when he wrote an almanac in 1550 for six of his children borne by his second wife [his first wife and children had passed in plague outbreak] and following its success he continued writing while working as an astrologer for wealthy patrons.

When his book Les Prophéties was published in 1555, it initially received mixed reception. Not many know but the book which supposedly predicted future was heavily reliant on the historical and literary precedents. Despite many critics objecting, he finds many supporters even centuries later.

Even today, his supporters believe that his predictions were genuine while academicians reject that Nostradamus had supernatural prophetic abilities and maintain that correlationship between his predictions and world happenings stemmed out of misinterpretations or mistranslations since quatrains he has penned are vague in nature.  

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