By Marigold Warner
Nostradamus, despite being 450 years dead, continues to provide a compelling narrative of future events.
His predictions have covered ground as varied as the Great Fire of London (“burnt by fire in the year sixty-six”), the rise of Adolf Hitler, and even the events at Hiroshima and Nagasaki, but his ongoing popularity seems to defy logic.
Perhaps it’s because the Frenchman’s writings were deliberately vague, or perhaps the seer had a genuine skill.
Regardless of your opinion of Nostradamus’ writings, it doesn’t change the fact that his predictions have already found some relevance in 2016 events.
Here’s a quick look at the future according to some 2017 Nostradamus predictions:
It’s probably a bit too convenient but references to trumpets in Nostradamus’ prophecies have been associated with US businessman and president-elect Donald Trump, specifically lines like this one: “The false trumpet concealing madness will cause Byzantium to change its laws. From Egypt, there will go forth a man who wants the edict withdrawn, changing money and standards.”
There are half a million ways to spin this one but Byzantium (Greece) has an association with refugees and illegal immigration while the point about changing money could be a reference to the instability of the pound and the euro in the wake of Brexit.
It’s perhaps a bit too Euro-centric for a Trump reference but the possible link to immigration is interesting, given that Trump made tackling the phenomenon the cornerstone of his election win.
Nostradamus ‘predicted’ Donald Trump 400 years ago https://t.co/ahFbHIWcR1
— The Independent (@Independent) 13 November 2016
A far more interesting prediction regarding Trump – or anybody in power in the States – is this one: “The great Senate will ordain the triumph, for one who afterwards will be vanquished, driven out.”
There’s obviously a real-life US Senate but are the country’s lawmakers already scheming to overthrow the new president?
It’s hard to remove a serving president. Congress can vote to impeach the president but the decision requires a two-third majority of senators.
The only two leaders ever impeached in US history – Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton – were acquitted, despite the latter’s almost comically illegal act of misleading a grand jury.
World War III
Even with the Doomsday Clock, a symbolic measure of our proximity to annihilation, at three minutes to midnight, the prospects of a Third World War seem remote.
Trump has opened a dialogue with Russian leader Vladimir Putin, ISIS is rapidly losing ground, and there’s far too much money to be lost in trade agreements for any major power to start pointing guns at their international rivals.
However, if popular perception of Nostradamus’ verses is correct, the election of Trump is a harbinger of war.
The Frenchman wrote: “The republic of the great city will not want to consent to the great severity: king summoned by trumpet to go out, the ladder at the wall, the city will repent”, with “severity” presumably meaning war.
It’s all a lot of tabloid scaremongering; if anything, Nostradamus is predicting the failure of a proposed military campaign due to its lack of favor with the population.
The mention of a “wall” is interesting though, perhaps suggesting a small-scale conflict with Mexico. The latter scenario seems infinitely more likely than a Third World War, given the frosty relationship between Trump and the Mexican people.
So, there you have it, two possible futures to worry about. Didn’t Nostradamus ever predict anything nice?
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