Abbé Mazières, Patrick Mensior and the Coume Sourde “Stone”

Paul Smith

26 August 2015
Revised 28 August 2015

Patrick Mensior unrealistically suggested in his article “Some observations on the Cros Report” that the Coume Sourde “Stone” was faked by Abbé Maurice-René Mazières (Parle-moi de Rennes-le-Château! pages 70-127, 2009).

Patrick Mensior wrongly claimed from the outset that a “Cros Report” was mentioned for the first time during the broadcast of the Frances-Inter Radio Programme on 30 July 1962 where Robert Charroux interviewed Noël Corbu in Rennes-le-Château. Mensior published a transcript of this Frances-Inter Radio Programme in the 2005 edition of his magazine Parle-moi de Rennes-le-Château! (pages 23-40) in an article called “The Blanchefort stele, Noël Corbu – and Pierre Plantard!” Nowhere in this transcript does Noël Corbu mention a “Cros Report”, nor does Corbu claim in his interview to be reading from such a document. Mensior, however, in his commentary on the transcript only imagined by his own wishful thinking that Corbu was quoting from a “Cros Report”. Quoting Mensior: “Corbu then quoted the statements in the unsigned document attributed to the engineer Ernest Cros (which was circulating in Rennes in 1959 at the earliest) in order to describe the stone of Coumesourde and the flagstone with the Reddis Regis Cellis Arcis inscription.” But the transcript shows that Noël Corbu said no such thing and Mensior adds further confusion by wrongly claiming that a “Cros Report had been circulating in Rennes-le-Château since 1959” – a factually inaccurate statement that cannot be supported by any solid evidence. Mensior's statements only represented his opinions and nothing else. There is no material evidence that can be presented to prove that the “Cros Report” existed in 1959 or that Noël Corbu was quoting from such a document during the 1962 Radio Programme.

Patrick Mensior then correctly noted the unreliability of the current version of the “Cros Report” when he commented: “Although the report is known as the “Cros” Report, since it describes events that allegedly took place in 1958 and 1959 it obviously cannot be the work of Ernest Cros, who died in Paris in 1946.”

Mensior tortuously added the testimonies of French authors Pierre Jarnac and Franck Marie in relation to Abbé Mazières and Ernest Cros knowing each other – but it was already known the two were acquaintances from the existing published works of Abbé Mazierès.

Mensior then adds that Franck Marie and Pierre Jarnac also referred to Octave Lassave, the sister-in-law of Ernest Cros, who had retained some of the investigative reports and maps of Ernest Cros, while his former housekeeper, Emilienne Guende, had inherited some of Ernest Cros' other notes and investigations.

It has only been speculated that some of his notes and investigative reports were published as mimeographs in small print-runs. Nobody knows for sure, there is no verifiable information surrounding these hypotheses.

Mensior paraphrased from a letter dated 3 March 1967 from Maître Mathieu Georges May, Ernest Cros's grandson-by-marriage: “Along with my family I have sorted through the various papers left by my grandfather, and I can state that even if he was a resident of this particular region then he did not leave behind any documents that having anything whatsoever to do with the area around Couiza.

Mensior turns to Pierre Jarnac's 1988 statement about the Cros archives: “When [Cros] left Ginoles, all his papers were taken away to a small chalet on the road leading out of the village. Here they remained until the day in 1960 or thereabouts when a person or persons unknown broke into the property and everything was either scattered to the winds or stolen, which meant that the heirs of Monsieur Cros were unable to find any of the documents that the deceased had collected together.

Mensior quotes from a letter by Abbé Mazières dated 29 March 1967 about the Ernest Cros archives: “The work undertaken by the engineer Cros, and the results of his various researches, never found their way into print, but some were typed up on the initiative of Mlle. Octavie Lassave, the sister-in-law of Monsieur Cros, after the death of the latter (around 1946). Mlle. Lassave herself died in 1956.

Mensior then proceeds to claim the Coume Sourde “Stone” was faked by Abbé Mazières.

Mensior compares the stylistic phraseology of the “Cros Report” with the phraseology of Abbé Mazières in his 1959 article on the Knights Templar, and concludes, on the basis of this opinion and nothing else, that Abbé Mazières was the faker of the Coume Sourde “Stone”.

Mensior also notes Abbé Mazières' syntactical peculiarity in his 1966 study of Saint-Martin-Lys – and that, according to Mensior's criteria, was additional proof that Abbé Mazières faked the Coume Sourde “Stone”.

From Mensior's perspective, there just had to be a circulating hard-copy “Cros Report” in existence to make his claims about Mazières-as-forger work: that was why Mensior emphasised that Noël Corbu read from a circulating hard-copy “Cros Report” during the 1962 Frances-Inter Radio Programme.

Towards the end of his article, Patrick Mensior again unjustifiably claimed that “extensive notes from the Cros Report” were found in a 1960s Rennes-le-Château article in Noir-et-Blanc.

Patrick Mensior can see a hard-copy “Cros Report” circulating everywhere.

Except that this circulating hard-copy “Cros Report” only exists in Mensior's imagination.

The basic point needs to be repeated: at no point during the 1962 Frances-Radio Programme interview did Noël Corbu ever claim to be reading from any report about the Coume Sourde “Stone” – Corbu would have emphasised it if he had been doing so – and Robert Charroux would have asked questions about the report – and Noël Corbu would at least have deposited the report in the Archives de l'Aude in Carcassonne, just like he deposited the transcript of his mid-1950s tape-recording there during the early 1960s.


Below, the cover to the 32 page book by Maurice-René Mazières and Bruno de Monts, Prêtres, Rennes-le-Château: son histoire, ses seigneurs, ses curés, sa légende du trésor (1982; reprinted in 2007).

The book gives a routine history of the village of Rennes-le-Château; a history of the Hautpoul family; the story of Bérenger Saunière and the three judgments against him dated 23 July 1910, 15 October 1910 and 5 December 1911; and the legend of the treasure by way of a tongue-in-cheek assessment of Gérard de Sède's 1967 book L'Or de Rennes and the drawing of the gravestone of Marie de Negri d'Ables found in Elie Tisseyre's 1906 article (the Coume Sourde “Stone” is never mentioned).