Rennes-le-Château: Crouquet (1948) and Girou (1936)

Paul Smith

16 May 2016

The Rhedesium website continues to copy material from this website without providing any acknowledgement – this time relating to the accounts of Roger Crouquet and Jean Girou – which although are contradictory does not prevent the webmaster from attempting to harmonise the two contradictory accounts.

This has all been covered before, but here goes again.

Roger Crouquet does not refer to a treasure discovery anywhere in his 1948 article about Bérenger Saunnière – he plainly and straighforwardly stated that the source of the priest's wealth originated from the trafficking in masses.

Roger Crouquet visited Rennes-le-Château with and on the advice of his friend Jean Mauhin, who himself had never visited the village before and called it a typical example of a ‘ghost’ village in the area. The two of them visited the owner of the Château Hautpoul, Monsieur Fatin, whom Crouquet described as: “disgusted with both politics and people ... retired to this abandoned castle, where he spends many hours in meditation.” Monsieur Fatin did not seem to know anything about any treasure in 1948.

Crouquet concluded his article stating: “Les Baux, Rennes-le-Château – names redolent of the old soil of France, names of the towns of the past, of towns that each day are disappearing one by one and of which very soon there will remain nothing but a fleeting memory.”

Roger Crouquet did not refer to Jean Girou's earlier 1936 account in his article. He would have mentioned it, had he known about it.

Twelve years earlier, Jean Girou said he heard from the Rennes-le-Château inhabitants that Saunière's estate originated from a treasure discovery – before concluding in humorous contempt “or so the locals say anyway!”

Jean Girou failed to provide any details of his story, which is unfortunate. However, he was dismissive of it as shown by his concluding remark “or so the locals say anyway!” Had there been any substance to the story Jean Girou would have filled-in the details, but it looks like he considered it to be an unreliable local urban myth, given nearly two decades after Saunière's death.

Here lies the nub of the story of the treasure of Rennes-le-Château: nothing dates from the lifetime of Bérenger Saunière. Yet thousands of pages of his account books in his handwriting have survived detailing his trafficking in masses activities that clearly were not fabricated (as well as many testimonies dating from his lifetime from people who sent him money for masses).

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