It was a visit to Italy that encouraged Nostradamus to shift his interests from medicine and more towards the occult. In this article, you will learn how the seer started getting noticed for making predictions.
In line with popular trends, he penned an almanac for 1550. This would be the first time he wrote with a Latinized name. His birth name of Nostredame became the Nostradamus we all know and love. His almanac was successful, which encouraged him to write one or more on an annual basis. Altogether, his almanacs contained more than 6,300 prophecies.
Aside from the almanacs, Nostradamus also started working on a book that contained about 1,000 French quatrains. These would make up the mostly undated prophecies that he has become famous for over the years. Religious fanatics were always ready to shoot a critical glance, so Nostradamus focused on making the true meaning as obscure as possible. He created word games and used different languages (such as Greek, Italian, and Latin words). The quatrains were published in a book called Les Propheties. The book received mixed reactions. Some believed that Nostradamus was evil, fake or crazy. He mostly gained the support of the elite, who felt his quatrains were inspired by spirituality.
One of Nostradamus’ biggest fans was Catherine de Medicis , the queen consort of King Henri II of France. After reading his almanacs for 1555, she called for him to come to Paris. He had mentioned unnamed threats to the royal family and she wanted him to explain what he meant. She also wanted the seer to create horoscopes for her children. This worried the seer and Nostradamus feared that he was about to lose his head. Instead, Catherine was pleased with him that later on, she awarded him the title of Counselor and Physician-in-Ordinary to her son, the young King Charles IX of France.
Records state that Nostradamus feared being persecuted for heresy by the Inquisition. However, astrology and prophecy were not considered a violation of these times and the only danger he would have faced is if he claimed magic could predict the future.
Nostradamus had a strong relationship with the Church and they recognized him as a trustworthy prophet and healer.
Nostradamus was briefly sent to prison at Marignane during late 1561 because he had published an almanac in 1562 without getting permission from the bishop beforehand.
Nostradamus suffered from gout and the disease caused great pain for many years. In his final years, it was very hard for the seer to move. By 1566, the gout had shifted to oedema (or dropsy). In June, he called for his lawyer to draw up a will. He wished to leave his property plus 3,444 crowns (which is an estimated $300,000 today) to his wife pending her remarriage. He set up a trust for their sons pending their 25th birthdays and for their daughters pending their own marriages.
It is said that the evening before his death, Nostradamus told his secretary that he would not find him alive by sunrise. The next morning, he was reportedly found dead , lying on the floor next to his bed.
Nostradamus died on July 2, 1566. At first, he was buried in the local Franciscan chapel in Salon. However, his final resting place is at Collegiale Saint Laurent, as he was re-interred during the French Revolution.