On 17th January 1967, a document was submitted to the French National Library called Le Serpent Rouge (The Red Serpent) as part of Les Dossier Secrets. Notably, it appeared there three weeks before the release of Gérard de Sède’s book The Accursed Treasure of Rennes-le-Château, that introduced the mystery to the wider French public.
On the document it states that is was written by Pierre Feugère, Louis Saint-Maxent and Gaston de Koker. All three were found dead, having hanged themselves, in different parts of France, on the 6 and 7 March 1967. Investigations have shown that the names were probably associated with the document by an unknown third party to mystify the source. The three men had no realtions with eachoter and no interest in esoteric or historical affairs.
It is often thought that the Red Serpent is an original document with real roots to the mystery. Many French researchers claim it’s an authentic document and some claim the author to be Jean Jourdes, a relatively unknown figure, featuring in the research of Franck Daffos. Jourdes is presented as the mastermind of the whole mystery by Daffos.
Whatever its source, The Red Serpent is an intriguing document. The main part is a poem in 13 verses with many links to the mystery. This without mentioning Rennes-le-Château or Saunière once. The verses are named after the signs of the Zodiac with an extra sign (Ophiuchus the Serpent-Bearer) inserted between Scorpio and Sagittarius. The Red Serpent appears to reveal the route to a treasure, with every verse depicting a step around the environment of Rennes-le-Château. The poem has been the starting point for many a treasure hunt since its appearance in the 60s.
There is little relation between the poem and the rest of the sheets in the file, containing a series of plans and diagrams relating to the seminary of St. Sulpice and the nearby church of St. Germain des Prés in Paris.
For the many English speaking visitors of this site here’s an English translation of this enigmatic document. The original French version can be seen in this post.
How strange are the manuscripts of this friend, great traveller of the unknown. They come together as white light but for one who knows separately, they are the colours of the rainbow; for the artist these six colours unite like magic in his palette and form black.
This friend, how would you know him? His name is a mystery but his number is that of a famous seal. How can one describe him? Maybe like the pilot of the everlasting Ark of Noah, impassive like a pillar on his white rock looking beyond the black rock towards the south.
In my arduous search I was trying to hack a way with my sword through the dense vegetation of the woods. I wanted to reach the place of the ‘Sleeping beauty’ in which some poets can see the QUEEN of a lost kingdom. Desperate to find the way I was aided by the parchments of my friend, they were for me like the thread of Ariadne.
Thanks to him, from now on with a watchful eye I could make steady progress. I can find the 64 scattered stones of the perfect cube which the brothers of the beauty of the black wood had scattered when they fled from the white fort while they were being persued by the usurpers.
Reassemble the scattered stones and, working with square and compass, put them back in order; find the line of the meridian in going from East to West, then looking from South to the North and finally in all directions to find the looked-for solution. Station yourself in front of the fourteen stones making a cross. The circle is the ring and crown and the crown forms the diadem of the Queen of the Castle.
The Mosaic tiles of this sacred place alternate black or white and Jesus, like ASMODEUS observes their alignments. I seem incapable of seeing the summit of the secret place of the Sleeping Beauty. Not being Hercules with magical power how do I solve the mysterious symbols engraved by the witnesses of the past. In the sanctuary however, is the font, fountain of love, of those who believe reminding us of these words ‘BY THIS SIGN YOU WILL CONQUER‘.
I am aware of the scent of the perfume which impregnates the sepulchre of the one I must release. Long ago her name was ISIS, Queen of the benevolent springs, COME TO ME ALL YOU WHO LABOUR AND ARE HEAVY LADEN AND I WILL GIVE YOU REST. Others knew her as Magdalene with the celebrated vase full of healing balm. The initiates know her to be Notre Dame des Cross.
I was like the shepherds of the celebrated painter Poussin puzzled by the enigma of ‘ET IN ARCADIA EGO‘. Would the voice of the blood form an image of our ancestral past. Yes, a light of inspiration floods my mind; now I understand. I know now the fabulous secret and what is more amazing is that when the four knights moved, one of the horses left four hoofprints in the rock. Here is the sign which Delacroix has given in one of the three paintings in the Chapel of Angels. There is the seventh sentence which a hand has traced: ‘DELIVER ME OUT OF THE MIRE, AND LET ME NOT SINK. Two times I.S. embalming and embalmed. Miraculous vessel of the eternal White Lady of Legends.
I began my journey in shadows and completed it in the light. At the window of the ruined house I look across the trees denuded by Autumn. At the summit of the mountain, the cross stood out from the crest of the midday sun. It was the fourteenth and highest of all with 35cm. Here, then, is my knight’s tower on the circuit of the divine horseman of the abyss.
There is a celestial vision for the one who recalls the four tasks of E.M. Signol around the line of the meridian; the same Choir (heart) of the sanctuary from which radiates the source of love for one another. I turn looking at the rose of P then to that of the S. Then from the S to the P until my mind is dizzy. The spiral in my mind becomes like a monstrous octopus expelling its ink, the shadows absorb the light. I put my hand to my mouth, biting my palm, maybe like Olier in his coffin. Curses, I know the truth, He has passed, in doing good as did he of the flowery tomb. But how many have pillaged the house, leaving only embalmed corpses and a number of metal things they could not carry? What strange mystery is concealed in the new Temple of Solomon, built by the children of St. Vincent?
Cursing the profane in their ashes and those who follow their ways; returning from the darkness while making the gesture of horror at the abyss into which I had plunged. Here is the proof that I knew the secret of the Seal of Solomon and I had visited the secret places of this Queen. Take Heed my friend, do not add or take away one iota; think and think again, the base lead of my words may contain the purest gold.
Returning again to the white hill, the sky opens its floodgates. Close to me a presence, its feet in the water, like one who has just received the mark of baptism, I turn away again to the east, facing me I see unwinding endlessly by his coils, the enormous Red Serpent mentioned in the documents, rigid and bitter, the huge, unleashed beast at the foot of the white mountain beast becomes scarlet with anger.
My emotions are elated, deliver me out of the mire, immediately I woke up, my dream is over. I meant to tell you that it was a dream I had on this 17th January, the day of Saint Sulpice, but the nightmare persisted. On reflection, I wish I had told it to you as a fairytale by Perrault. In the pages which follow, dear reader, are the results of a dream which nursed me from the bizarre to the unknown. Let he who has the understanding use it with wisdom.
Translation by David Wood.
For a complete interpretation of the poem, have a look at the magnificent work by Marcus Williamson.