Lord Of The World – Book Review with Nostradamus Connection
Author: Robert Hugh Benson, Introduction by Mark Bosco, S.J.
Publisher: Ave Mari Press, Inc, P.O. Box 428, Notre Dame, IN
Copyright: 2016, ISBN: 0870612985
Cover: Katherine Ross, Andy Wagoner
Review: Lynard Barnes, February 3, 2017
Summary: In 1917, the world gives up on capitalism and essentially gives up on Christianity in the 1920s. Seventy years later, the world is ready for a humanist leader and he appears when East and West are on the verge of war. In this 1907 apocalyptic novel, the emphasis is not on events but on spirit. It soars in a way even the author probably did not realize. You might want to read the book before reading this extended review about current conditions in America.
Reputedly the first dystopian novel published in the twentieth century, LORD OF THE WORLD comes with a few caveats. First, it is a novel by a Roman Catholic of England written with Roman Catholics in mind. This undoubtedly is why, in 2015, Pope Francis advised reading it. Second, it was written when panoramic scenes were conveyed in words, not images. Hence, the writing flows along with scenic descriptions reducing the pace of the story to a crawl.
Despite the caveats the book is a work of uncanny insight. It is also a work of uncanny failure. Any book about the end of the world, or at least the end of a historical era, is bound to miss something. Usually it is something big. LORD OF THE WORLD misses something big.
In this review I take a step back from the book itself. My approach is to connect with something written more than three hundred years before. Another Roman Catholic author, Michele de Nostradamus, expressed concerns for the future of the Catholic Church, for Christianity and for the human condition. Even more significant to me was how the two men looked at America and America’s place in world affairs. The similarities between the assessments of Benson and Nostradamus are striking. The differences are even more striking.
For anyone familiar with the philosophy and prognostications of the fifteenth century writings of Nostradamus, comparing Benson’s snippet of a turbulent future is almost compulsory. Nostradamus’ predictions address some of the same issues addressed by Benson. Benson however pushes Nostradamus’ philosophical conclusions forward by establishing a fictional world in deep spiritual conflict.
On one side there are the newly emerged and dominating proponents of a Humanist agenda. In essence, these are rationalists. They believe science is at the foundation of nature and of human life. The other are the spiritualists. The Catholic Church is the primary exemplar, but anyone holding to a supernatural faith are in this group. In drawing the dichotomy so sharply, LORD OF THE WORLD captures the undercurrent of conflict of the then unfolding twentieth-century perfectly. The undercurrents come to an end around the end of the century–1998 or so. (Ironic or coincidental since Nostradamus, in his King Of The Mongols- July 1999 prediction–which is really not about kings and only peripherally about Mongolians–predicts the start of world terrorism around the same time–see the addendum below). Events during this period are what Benson’s novel captures. Nostradamus, recognizing the same conflicting undercurrents, see Mankind’s social condition playing out very differently. For Nostradamus, the dichotomy Benson sees is superficial. But exaggerating and condensing are the tools of good fiction. It is also what makes LORD OF THE WORLD such enjoyable reading.
Life Through a Mirror
In hindsight, Benson was writing when the spiritualists and rationalists were staring past each other. In chapter seven, he comes very close to recognizing this. This chapter is pivotal in understanding Benson’s take on the fundamental conflict he is describing.
After the humanist oriented government published information about a Catholic plot to undermine the government, Mabel Brand witnesses the aftermath of a mob attacking people of religious faith. Mabel is the wife of a leader in the government, Oliver Brand. Oliver is the leading character in the novel. He is dismayed by the violence witnessed by his wife. He is consoled by another member of the government that “. . . man was not yet perfectly civilised.”
When Oliver arrives home he finds Mabel distraught. She declares that what she witnessed was “the end of her religion . . . swept away in this murderous passion of the people of her faith . . . they were no better than Christians. . .” Her husband consoles her by staying, “We are all human, we are all immature.”
The unfolding apocalyptic events in LORD OF THE WORLD are brought to fruition by the humanists in self defense against the spiritualists. Both are human and both are immature. What is mildly astonishing is how Benson correctly defines humanism and the human condition. Humanists, rationalists are simply the spiritualists without the “supernatural principle”. Spiritualist are rationalists with a supernaturalist foundation. Humanists, like the spiritualists, would inevitably “put on the dress of liturgy and sacrifice” as Benson have the Cardinal Protector of England, Percy Franklin, ruminate at one point. Benson speaks more to the human condition than a dichotomy between opposing ideals. He packs it all into a riveting (though excessively wordy) story. We find the expected and preferred villains and victims.
Nostradamus also discussed a scenario of conflict. Victims and villains however are not so broadly defined. One is tempted to say that Nostradamus saw only one villain in these conflicts, but saying so does not satisfy our need to identify victims and villains.
Many regard Nostradamus as a charlatan. His writings fit so neatly into the mode of a philosophy it is odd more commentators have not explored it. In noting the parallels between Nostradamus and Benson’s novel, the question of whether Benson ever consulted the writings of Nostradamus is appropriate. There are descriptions in the novel seemingly taken directly from Nostradamus. There are parts of the novel which seem a direct contradiction of what Nostradamus says, especially about the role of America in world affairs. (Admittedly, Benson does not flush this role out too much. He is in basic agreement with Nostradamus that America is not the driving force nor directing force behind end-of-the-world events, despite the Senator from Vermont).
The seemingly broad applicability of Nostradamus’ writings comprises the major criticism against him. The argument goes that his writings are so general there is no real content. For those who delve deeply into the writings, this judgment is a case of the commentator not being familiar with the arcane tidbits of history with which Nostradamus worked. (A prime example of a superficial examination of Nostradamus is the quatrain popularly titled the July 1999 King of the Mongols quatrain. For more on this, see the addendum at the end of this review).
The Spiritualist and the Humanist
In a quatrain appearing to be a generality, Nostradamus writes specifically about the conflict between the spiritualists and humanists as defined by Benson. While Benson sees the rationalists as the dominate and prevailing actors in the conflict, Nostradamus has a different take. Century V, quatrain 49:
Not from Spain but from ancient France
will he be elected for the trembling
ship. He will make a promise to the
enemy who will cause cruel plague during his reign.
The quatrain says a lot and on the surface does not appear to discuss spiritualists nor humanist. Really, nothing is clear until you understand who is to be elected and exactly what is meant by “ancient France”.
Playing analogy association, you eventually arrive at the conclusion that a Pope is the subject of the quatrain–the “trembling ship”. The translation of the original French word “nacelle” for boat or ship presents a problem for some translators. Some translate the word as “bark”, ignoring the Latin origin of the word. The real historical puzzle however comes with the phrase “ancient France”. A generalist historian would know that the phrase refers to a period before the 1789 French Revolution. The same historian would also know that since the papacy Interregnum (29 August 1789 to 14 March 1800) it would be highly unusual for a Pope to elected from anyplace other than Italy (three from outside Italy versus twelve Italians), let alone one elected from France. More historical detective work is necessary to unravel “a promise” made, “the enemy” and a “cruel plague”. The key however is the subject of the quatrain: ancient France and the papacy or “trembling ship”.
Once you discover that the phrase “ancient France” refers to a period when French King Henry of Valois (Henry III, Duke of Anjou and King of Poland and later King of France) was in fact King of Poland and that he signed the PACTA CONVENTA, the historical mysteries begin falling into place. More significant as a clue to the subject of quatrain is that at the time Henry assumed the throne of Poland, Poland needed a king to protect it from Russia. Nostradamus used the quatrain to discuss the election of Cardinal Karol Wojtyla, Archbishop of Krakow, Poland to the papacy as Pope Paul II. At the time Poland was still throwing off the yoke of communism. Communism was the second of Nostradamus’ Antichrists–“the enemy”. But for Nostradamus, you must step back even farther from this duality of the spiritual versus human-centered condition of humanity.
Like Nostradamus’ writings, Benson’s LORD OF THE WORLD sees the future of the world through the prism of the Catholic Church. In so doing, both address the issues of spirituality and humanism or the New Humanity, as Benson refers to it at one point. Nostradamus simply refers to the dichotomy as spirit and Man. The difference between the two however is that Nostradamus clearly recognizes the falsity of the dichotomy and Benson does not.
In examining how other historical epochs ended we can highlight what Benson and other end-of-world diviners miss. Simplistically, we can connect dots implying that the Assyrians gave rise to the Egyptians, the Egyptians gave rise to the Greeks, the Greeks gave rise to the Romans, the Romans gave rise to Western Europe and the Americas. Again, for Nostradamus and Benson, the defining social convention of our current epoch–Western Europe, the Americas–is the Roman Catholic Church and more broadly, the Christian Church (the “old writings”). The Catholic Church was founded before the end of one epoch (the Roman Empire) and the start of our own. Historical eras never really end, they blend into and combine into the new. Benson’s recognizes this when he speaks of a liturgy adopted for the rationalists.
The Dissolution of Faith
LORD OF THE WORLD provides a crash and concise course in the attitudes of theological dogmas of religion and rationalism. Faith and rationality. Benson’s narration makes it clear that he sees these two perspectives on life as the driving force of the twentieth century. For both Benson and Nostradamus, the spirit of unquestioned faith flows from the Catholic Church. The dogma of science sprouts from what Siddhartha Mukherjee called in his book THE GENE–paraphrasing James Gleick–the atom, the byte, and the gene.
These basic science concepts emerged after the pivotal events and ideas of the 1789 French Revolution. For Nostradamus this emergence was crucial to a specific period in time. That period includes Nostradamus’ first Antichrist, Napoleon Bonaparte, the second Antichrist encompassing the rise of communism-Nazism and its human centered theology. Nostradamus’ third and final Antichrist is in the future.
For Benson, writing when science dogma was less specific or specialized but still more cohesive and dogmatic, seeing humanists as the chief villains moving events toward the end of the world is easily understandable. Nostradamus sees an end of the world ushered in by the rise of his third Antichrist. It is not religious faith, nor faith in science that unravels civilization. Rather, it is the ignorance of not accepting what is not known. Presumably, the militarism of Nostradamus’ third Antichrist will bring this ignorance into sharp focus. Faith is the scaffolding upon which individuals tie their existence to a power greater than themselves. The militarism Nostradamus sees in the future is where the dogmas of science and religious faith merge with disastrous results. The end of the world does not follow however. In the supremacy of ignorance, neither religious faith and nor faith in the rationalism of science are conductive to the well being of the human condition.
In the world of 1907, all the scientific advances coming to maturity in the mid and late twentieth century were already widely circulating. The idea that society could be improved to the point of perfection was being advocated by some as the ultimate triumph of science. Indeed, there were some in England and America who saw science, especially the science of biology and the promise of genetics, as the final nail in the coffin of spiritualism in general and religion specifically. Man evolved through the millennia, governed by the physical laws of science, not a God or spirit.
Communism was promising a classless, people (worker) oriented society based on scientific principles. Economics. In Europe and America, eugenics was the guiding light for a better world. The world did not need a god to lessen the human travails of hunger, poverty, and ignorance. Nor did the world need government to protect the weak. Eliminating the inferior and undesirable from society through science was a better way. It was in America that visions of the perfect world through eugenics took root and blossomed. Europe was late to follow, but follow it did. This may be one factor influencing Benson to have his world leader, Son of Man, sprung from America.
LORD OF THE WORLD does an exemplary job of painting this picture of the rationalists versus the spiritualists. Benson mentions specifically the Communist. In 1907, there were no Nazis, no fascists, no religious fundamentalist terrorists, no “make America great again”. The roots of this humanist ideology were rampant however. There were the racists, there were adherents of Nietzsche’s supermen, the Anglophile ideation of a Tarzan motif. Man as part of nature but by scientific evaluation, exulted far above nature by virtue of intellect. Writing some three hundred years before Benson, Nostradamus cites them all. But for Nostradamus, both Benson’s spiritualists and rationalists are toiling under a delusion.
At the core of Benson’s misinterpretation of what he and others perceive as a conflict between people of the Spirit and people of science is the belief that spiritual and scientific beliefs are separate and distinct manifestations of the human condition. Nostradamus connects the two dots by making the distinction in a rather convoluted way. However, it becomes obvious within the context of the few mentions he makes of America. Benson also mentions America and, as mentioned above, it is obvious why he would entertain the notion that the end of Western civilization–the Catholic Church–would originate with a man from America’s shores.
America and the Spirit of Humanity
In Benson’s book, the mysterious Mr. Felsenburgh is a U. S. Senator from Vermont who slides onto the world stage by solving the problem of world peace. He steps into the cauldron of the West and East on the verge of war. (Nostradamus’ Northern and Southern kingdoms). To us today, it is natural to think that if any world leader emerged he or she would come from America. But at the time Benson was writing LORD OF THE WORLD, America was an emerging though noisy player on the world stage. For reasons already mentioned, in social, economic and broader scientific realms, America was noticed but not revered. So, where did Benson get the idea that America could produce an Antichrist? The idea would be very surprising to Nostradamus.
Over the last half century America has experience a decline in the percentage of people identifying themselves as Christians. There has also been a steady decline in those identifying with established religions. What may have been important for Benson is that Catholics have never been the majority in America. Though the mantra today is that America was founded as a Christian nation, early settlers came to America to escape religious persecution and to worship in their religion as they saw fit. Specific religious tenets were left up to those with belief and faith in those tenets. This is relevant in the broader context in which Benson sees the decline of Christianity, spiritualism and the decline or fall of the Catholic Church.
Also, there was growing acceptance of science as an ultimate solution to Man’s problems. From the description of the cosmos to the tiniest elements of life, Europe and America embraced science and the applicability of science to the human condition. America, more so than Europe, also maintained a co-existent fervent commitment to religious faith.
From across the sea, what probably struck Benson more than anything else were the pockets of American society extolling and willing to liberally apply the science of eugenics as a tool of social order. The belief that society could be improved by eliminating people with inferior genes. It was an affront to spirituality in a class by itself. Any society that could accept or even entertain such an affront could easily produce a Felsenburgh.
So, what is the difference between believing there is a God with all the answers, or that Man and his science has all the answers. Benson says there is a big difference. Nostradamus does not parse the issue in this way.
In the opening chapters, Benson lays out an idyllic though stark framework. Modern Man has achieved all the possible comforts of life. Material comfort and the possibility of world peace as a result of an extraordinary world leader, Felsenburgh from America. Mankind, the human mind, has achieved this pinnacle of survival without the presence or guidance of any invisible, ethereal being. No remote God or god. Nostradamus too recognized these utopian achievements of Mankind. It is a fragile achievement. Nostradamus saw the forest despite the trees. The forest was the dogma.
While Benson portrays America as the origin of a new world leader, Nostradamus sees a more limited place for American in world affairs. Like Benson, Nostradamus focuses on what Benson calls the humanism versus the Catholic Church and Christianity.
Defender of the Faith
The Roman Catholic Church–the Old World–once stood as an intermediary between the individual and God. This idea, the Catholic Church as arbitrator between Mankind and God was central to Nostradamus’ philosophy. It was this core idea that influenced his writings about America. From the time of its inception (1776) through the reign of what Nostradamus saw as the second Antichrist (Communism and Nazism), to the “age of terror” (religious fundamentalism and the rise of Russia) we are currently living through, America was to be above the fray. He states this in his Epistle to Henry II in 1593.
For God will take notice of the long barrenness of the great Dame…
The “great Dame” here is Nostradamus’ name for France. The moniker covers a period from roughly 1649 to 1789 when France (and by extension, the Roman Catholic Church) was the military and cultural center of the Western world. With the possible exception of Martin Luther’s Protestant Reformation, staring with the Edict of Worms in 1521 and formalized as a revolt against the Catholic Church in 1529, the Church was stagnant and metaphorically barren, fighting pagan insurgencies it had fought since its inception. That was to change.
But, she being in great danger, the girl she will give birth to with risk at her age
of death in the eighteenth year, and not possible to outlive the thirty-sixth, will
leave three males and one female.
Nostradamus packs over a hundred and fifty years of history into this one sentence. For purposes here, interest is only in the “one female”. However, like everything Nostradamus wrote, it is impossible to decode the reference to the “one female” without decoding the rest of the statement. The identities are as follows:
In 1771, parliaments were abolished in France (the “great dame”) and replaced by a system of courts to review royal decrees. For Nostradamus, this marks the birth of Liberty (“the girl”) as a movement in world affairs. Eighteen years later (1789 and eleven years after France came to the aid of the American Revolution in 1778), France itself almost died with the storming of the Bastille on July 14, 1789. The “great dame” was indeed on the verge of death after eighteen years of “liberty” (1771 to 1789). In total, “liberty” will only last thirty-six years in Europe, until the Treaties of Tilsit in July 1807 when peace was restored to the European continent and Napoleon Bonaparte was Emperor of France.
The “great dame” left behind three males and one female. The three males, discarding the First French Republic from roughly 1792 to 1795, were the Second French Republic (1848 to 1852), the Third French Republic (1871 to 1940), and the Fourth French Republic (1946 to 1958). (Obvious question here: why is not the current Fifth Republic, formed in October 1958, included. We will not address the issue here but interested readers might want to note the differences between the parliamentary governments of the previous Republics and the Presidential system of the Fifth). The “one female” is the United States of America. He writes of her:
The daughter shall be given for the preservation of the Christian Church,
the dominator falling into the Pagan sect of new infidels (Protestants),
and she will have two children, the one fidelity, the other infidelity by
confirmation of the Catholic Church.
Like “the great dame”, the girl she leaves behind gives birth to two children. Neither male nor female are mentioned. The two children are ideas. One of the children will be fidelity, faith or loyalty, “by confirmation of the Catholic Church”. The other infidelity, faithlessness or disloyalty. In the time of Nostradamus, these French words specifically pertained to faith. This matter of faith and faithlessness and judgement adjudicated by the Catholic Church are important in evaluating Benson’s apocalyptic novel. We return to this later. However, it would be a mistake to assume Nostradamus is speaking only of supernatural faith here.
Note the distinction here between the Christian Church and the Catholic Church.
There are few Nostradamus quatrains clearly mentioning America. In those in which America is mentioned, the subject revolves around faith. One way of unraveling what the terms fidelity and infidelity mean is by looking at some of these quatrains.
In Century 4, Quatrain 96, he writes:
The eldest sister of the Britannic Island
Shall be formed fifteen years before her brother.
Because of his promise proving to be true, she
will succeed to the kingdom of the Balance.
Nostradamus dates the birth of the United States as November 5, 1777 when the Articles of Confederation were agreed upon and the name The United States of America was introduced. Fifteen years later, the brother, the First Republic of France was proclaimed in September 1792. The Balance referred to in this (and other quatrains) is the former Soviet Union. It is a moniker Nostradamus bases primarily on the October 1917 Russian Revolution. For purposes here, the real quandary is unraveling the phrase “his promise proving to be true”.
The “his” Nostradamus is referring to the one elected to the “trembling ship” making a promise to the enemy mentioned in Century V, quatrain 49 above. The enemy for Pope Paul II was Soviet communism.
Nostradamus foresaw that America, in keeping with its purpose, would triumph over one of the principal adversaries confronting the individual’s relationship with God. The triumph comes more than three-quarters of the way through the twentieth century. The adversary, the second of the three Antichrists Nostradamus envisions, arose from the French Revolution. The liberty unleashed by the French Revolution freed Mankind from the constraints of a sanctioned dogma–the religious moorings of the Catholic Church. Mankind would take this liberty and erect new and equally surreptitious dogmas to orchestrate a relationship with something greater than themselves. This was the spiritual search unleashed in 1789. Benson sums this up perfectly when he has Percy Franklin, the Cardinal-Protector of England ponder, “It was not man that was worshipped but the Idea of man, deprived of his supernatural principle.” (emphasis added. In America, the Idea of man, whether social order stuffed into scientific economics or physical-mental perfection culled from genetic manipulation, was dogma in search of a commitment of faith. In preserving the Christian Church, America, in effect becoming protector of the people of faith, never fully gravitated toward the dogma of any faith. It was the quintessential basis of freedom.
The End Is Near Again
Over six-hundred thousand Americans died in the country’s fidelity to the idea that all men were created equal with certain inalienable rights. The American Civil War was a re-dedication to the foundational concept of separation of dogma and individual liberty of conscience. Beyond that liberty is pursuit of faith. Faith entangled in the dogma of religion and science, and faith by the individual un-entangled from both. The latter more in line with Martin Luther’s Protestant Reformation. No impositions sanctioned by government or church.
The under currents of dogma have been a continuous threat to America’s purpose every since 1861. When Benson was busy writing LORD OF THE WORLD, America was in flux, pulling back on unbounded capitalism and reaffirming the dignity of the individual. While engaged in the struggle to adhere to the principles of its founding, there were Americans pursuing the humanistic goals of economic and biological science. Within years of Benson’s book, Russia would embrace communism, Germany would become enthralled with super-man and the human-centered concept of racial purity. Not only were these contrary to faith in a god or God, they were profoundly antithetical to the very concept of the individual and the Will of the individual and their relationship with God. The contrary ideas wafted through the American political, social and scientific communities but never anchored in reality.
The irony lost on Benson, but not Nostradamus, was that both humanists and spiritualists worked toward goals set by Man, not God. In 1999, when Shamil Basayev and Ibn Al-Khattab invaded Dagestan with the objective of setting up an Islamic State under Shira law, ushering in what Nostradamus regarded as the age of terror, it was a man-made goal pursued by men. The corollary for the humanists were the Communist in Russia, the Nazis in Germany (Man reduced to the science of race). How do these expressions of faith in religious or scientific dogma differ in the supernatural?
The whole trajectory of the ritual of science has proven that there is a God. From the smashing of the atom to quantum physics to the life-cycle of living cells, an unfathomable mystery is at the bottom of it all. The stasis of organized religion has always been the calming certainty of rituals. So why are the rituals of science and the rituals of religion viewed as opposing each other. Could it have anything to do with where each places the individual within the scheme of the universe?
If Benson’s humanists regime were replaced by the spiritualist regime of the Catholic Church, what would be the difference? It’s really not a question. From the time of Charlemagne to the start of the French Revolution, the Catholic Church was the ruling order. Then came the French Revolution and kings were no longer the anointed of God and individuals were free to pursue whatever belief system they desired. The end of the world is a cycle in human affairs.
Benson’s LORD OF THE WORLD is about a spurious conflict between those of supernatural faith and those of science faith. While it seems an apocalyptic mixture suitable for a drama heralding the end of the world, it is not. Benson gives passing acknowledgment to this when he has the Syrian priest attending the Pope at the place of Armageddon realize:
“The gates of hell shall not prevail: when Rome falls, the world falls; and when the world falls, Christ is manifest in power.”
It is an elegant way of saying that the real conflict is not between dogmas, but within the hearts of Mankind. The real conflict is between the hubris of Mankind’s perception of his world and humility at not knowing the world. Both religion and science are looking at the world through a prism of profound ignorance.
The Foibles of Left and Right
About the real conflict Benson examines (as opposed to the superficial conflict of church and science), Nostradamus says the following:
The countries, towns, cities, realms and provinces which have abandoned their old customs to gain liberty . . . will secretly have wearied of their liberty. Faith lost in their perfect religion, they will begin to strike to the left, only to return to the right. Holiness, for a long time overcome, will be replaced in accordance with the earliest writings.
This describes our current condition in the early twenty-first century world. People have indeed grown weary of their liberty. In Europe, social order gravitates back toward the autocrat with simple, single answers. Even in the United States, where so much blood was spilled to maintain liberty, a strongman is more desirable as a leader than the discourse of democracy. This is the period in which America enters into Nostradamus’ state of infidelity. (The outcome results in some kind of horrendous defeat for America in the Middle East though America eventually wins the conflict).
As the people grow weary of their liberty, there arises from the ashes the oligarches. This, according to Nostradamus, is in preparation for the rise of military dictatorships around the world. After the “two brothers of the North” have united and terrified the peoples of the “East”, the rise of Nostradamus’ third and final Antichrist will occur. This latter period corresponds to Benson’s end of the world events. According to Nostradamus, events similar to what Benson describes take place very far in our future.
Even if Benson’s apocalyptic novel was not influenced by Nostradamus the author still managed to perfectly capture the superficial dichotomy between religion and science. To anyone who has experienced the rapture of faith, end-of-the-world predictions are quite meaningless. This is the liberty America was founded to preserve: the individual is tethered to neither a dogma nor institution (national state), nor for that matter, a “homeland” with all its connotations of spiritual inertia. The infidelity of which Nostradamus speak has now become real. Like that which came before, it too will eventually end.
To be clear here, the world comes to an end everyday. The only question is whether it ends in a state of profound ignorance or in a state of revelation derived from life itself. No one, not even Nostradamus can answer that questions.
Nostradamus Missed It – Did he?
The King of the Mongols quatrain is being touted as a major Nostradamus failure. Though not directly pertaining to Benson’s humanistic domination of twentieth century society and politics, the quatrain does refer to the thrashing death-throbs of Nostradamus’ second Antichrist.
This second Antichrist sprung up from the Russian October 1917 Revolution, itself an offshoot of the French Revolution and the first Antichrist. Embodied in the second Antichrist are the ideas of communism, ethnic purity, and the elevation and cohesion of ethnocentric-religious loyalty to dogma. The menagerie of anti-spiritual creeds roiling the world community are exemplified by radical Islamic terrorism.
The Age of Terror started in 1999 and is likely to continue until at least 2024. In short, the King of the Mongols quatrain is about the War of Dagestan, the expansionism of Russian power under Vladimir Putin and those fanatics dedicated to bringing about an Islamic Caliphate. The war officially started in August, 1999 with very deep roots in events occurring in Russia in July 1999. The conflict between Russian and the Chechnya-Dagestan goes back some two hundred years. For Nostradamus, the 1999 conflict was different between the Antichrist was finally at war with himself.
I will not go into the detail about the quatrain. For those interested, examine the Mongolian domination of Russia by the Mongolians after 1382. There are parrells to the Russian domination over Chechyna and Dagestan. The King of the Mongls quartrain in French and English:
Century X, Quatrain 72 – French
L’an mil neuf cens nonance neuf sept mois,
Du ciel viendra un grand Roi deffraieur. (derailleur is a gear-shifting mechanism)
Resusciter le grand Roi d’Angolmois. (Angolmois: no such word. angoumois is a grain moth)
Avant que Mars regner par bonheur.
Century X, Quatrain 72 – English
In the year 1999, and seven months, from
the sky will come the great King of terror.
He will bring back to life the great King of
the Mongols. Before and after war reigns happily.
Note the non-existent word Angolmois is taken as an anagram for Mongol (though it should really be Mongolia). Nostradamus’ reference to Mongolia here cites a time between 1919 and 1921 when part of the Mongol Empire came under the protection of the Soviet Union (The Mongolian Revolution of 1921).
If Nostradamus is employing his usual historical analogy-association method and reworking the history of Chechnya and Russia into the quatrain, then it serves as a nice introduction to the major players on the world stage. The king of terror from the sky symbolizes Russian helicopters (moths) launched from their base in Buymaksk, Dagestan on July 29, 1999. The Mongols were indeed returning, not only to Eastern Europe but are to cause instability in the West as well. The push for an Islamic State by radical terrorists have not as yet ran its course and will most likely continue until 2024. After the terrorist push is eradicated, the world will see the rise of oligarchies to be followed by military dictatorships. All the “humanistic” and spiritual trends of the French Revolution were present in the events leading up to the war and are now floating from it. The effects of Nostradamus’ second Antichrist morphs into a world ran by oligarchs and we are now on the verge of this change.