The official emblem of the Priory of Sion is partly based on the fleur-de-lis,
which was a symbol particularly associated with the French monarchy.
The Prieure de Sion, translated from French as Priory of Sion, is a name given to multiple groups, both real and fictitious. The most notorious is a fringe fraternal organization, founded and dissolved in France in 1956 by Pierre Plantard.
In the 1960s, Plantard created a fictitious history for that organization, describing it as a secret society founded in the Kingdom of Jerusalem in 1099, which serves the interests of the Merovingian dynasty and its alleged bloodlines. This myth was expanded upon and popularized by the 1982 controversial book The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail, and later claimed as factual in the preface of the 2003 conspiracy fiction novel The Da Vinci Code corresponding to my book Sarah and Alexander in the Alchemy of Time.
After becoming a cause celebre from the late 1960s to the 1980s, the mythical Priory of Sion was exposed as a ludibrium created by Plantard as a framework for his false pretention to the French throne. Evidence presented in support of its historical existence and activities before 1956 was discovered to have been forged and then planted in various locations around France by Plantard and his accomplices. Nevertheless, many conspiracy theorists persist in believing that the Priory of Sion is an age-old cabal that conceals a subversive secret.
The Priory of Sion myth has been exhaustively debunked by journalists and scholars as one of the great hoaxes of the 20th century. Some skeptics have expressed concern that the proliferation and popularity of books, websites and films inspired by this hoax have contributed to the problem of conspiracy theories, pseudohistory and other confusions becoming more mainstream. Others are troubled by the romantic reactionary ideology unwittingly promoted in these works.
The Priory of Sion was a fraternal organization founded in the town of Annemasse in eastern France in 1956. As with all associations, French law required that the Priory of Sion be registered with the government; the registration took place at the subprefecture of Saint-Julien-en-Genevois on May 7, 1956 and was noted on July 20, 1956 in the Journal Officiel de la Republique Francaise.
The founders and signatories inscribed with their real names and aliases were Pierre Plantard, also known as "Chyren", and André Bonhomme, also known as "Stanis Bellas". André Bonhomme was the President while Pierre Plantard was the Secretary General. The registration documents also included the names of Jean Deleaval as the Vice-President and Armand Defago as the Treasurer. The offices of the Priory of Sion and its journal Circuit were located at Plantard's apartment.
The choice of the name "Sion" was based on a popular local feature, a hill south of Annemasse in France, known as Mont Sion, where the founders intended to establish a retreat center. The accompanying title to the name was "Chevalerie d'Institutions et Regles Catholiques d'Union Independante et Traditionaliste": this subtitle forms the acronym CIRCUIT and translates in English as "Knighthood of Catholic Rule and Institution and of Independent Traditionalist Union".
The statutes of the Priory of Sion indicate its purpose was to allow and encourage members to engage in studies and mutual aid. The articles of the association expressed the goal of creating a Traditionalist Catholic chivalric order. Article 7 of the statutes of the Priory of Sion stated that its members were expected "to carry out good deeds, to help the Roman Catholic Church, teach the truth, defend the weak and the oppressed". Towards the end of 1956 the association had planned to forge partnerships with the local Catholic Church of the area which would have involved a school bus service run by both the Priory of Sion and the church of Saint-Joseph in Annemasse.
The bulk of the activities of the Priory of Sion, however, bore no resemblance to the objectives as outlined in its statutes: Circuit, the official journal of the Priory of Sion, was indicated as a news bulletin of an "organization for the defense of the rights and the freedom of affordable housing" rather than for the promotion of chivalry-inspired charitable work. The first issue of the journal is dated May 27, 1956, and, in total, 12 issues appeared. Some of the articles took a political position in the local council elections. Others criticized and even attacked real-estate developers of Annemasse.
The formally registered association was dissolved some time after October 1956 but intermittently revived for different reasons by Plantard between 1961 and 1993, though in name and on paper only. The Priory of Sion is considered dormant by the subprefecture because it has indicated no activities since 1956. According to French law, subsequent references to the Priory bear no legal relation to that of 1956 and no one, other than the original signatories, is entitled to use its name in an official capacity. André Bonhomme played no part in the association after 1956. He officially resigned in 1973 when he heard that Plantard was linking his name with the association. In light of Plantard's death in 2000, there is no one who is currently alive who has official permission to use the name.
Alleged Grand Masters
As a result of Dan Brown's best-selling 2003 conspiracy fiction novel The Da Vinci Code and the subsequent 2006 film, there was a new level of public interest in the Priory of Sion. Brown's novel promotes the mythical version of the Priory but departs from the ultimate conclusions presented in The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail.
Rather than plotting to create a Federal Europe ruled by a Merovingian sacred king descended from the historical Jesus, the Priory of Sion initiates its members into a mystery cult seeking to restore the feminist theology necessary for a complete understanding of early Christianity, which was supposedly suppressed by the Catholic Church. The author has presented this speculation as fact in his non-fiction preface, as well as in his public appearances and interviews.
Furthermore, in their 1987 sequel The Messianic Legacy, Lincoln, Baigent and Leigh suggested that there was a current conflict between the Priory of Sion and the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, which they speculated might have originated from an earlier rivalry between the Knights Templar and Knights Hospitaller during the Crusades. However, for the dramatic structure of The Da Vinci Code, Brown chose the controversial Catholic personal prelature Opus Dei as the Assassini-like nemesis of the Priory of Sion, despite the fact that no author had ever argued that there is a conflict between these two groups. The plotline of the book itself however was claimed to be fictional by the author.
Tagline -- Louvre curator and Priory of Sion grand master Jacques Sauniere is fatally shot one night at the museum by an albino Catholic monk named Silas, who is working on behalf of someone he knows only as the Teacher, who wishes to discover the location of the "keystone," an item crucial in the search for the Holy Grail.
The Priory of Zion, is said to be the cabal behind many of the events that occurred at Rennes-le-Chateau. Its earliest roots are alleged to be in some sort of Hermetic or Gnostic society led by a man named Ormus.
In 1132 a group of monks founded Orval Abbey in France. These monks are said to have formed the basis for the Order de Sion lead by Godfrey of Bouillon.
The Cutting of the Elm at Gisors in 1188 symbolically marking the split between the Knights Templar and the Priory of Sion". If it is indeed true I feel connected to that storyline.
The Knights Templar or simply the Templars, were a Catholic military order founded in 1119, headquartered on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem through 1128 when they went to the Vatican and were recognized in 1139 by the papal bull Omne datum optimum. The order was active until 1312 when it was allegedly suppressed by Pope Clement V by the bull Vox in Excelso. So many stories live on about them.
The Priory of Sion, was a fraternal organization, founded and dissolved in France in 1956 by Pierre Plantard as part of a supposed hoax, though numerous researchers claim the secret society still operates. In the 1960s, Plantard created an apparently fictitious history for that organization, describing it as a secret society founded by Godfrey of Bouillon on Mount Zion in the Kingdom of Jerusalem in 1099, perhaps conflating it with a historical monastic order, the Abbey of Our Lady of Mount Zion. In Plantard's version, the Priory was devoted to installing a secret bloodline of the Merovingian dynasty on the thrones of France and the rest of Europe.
The notion was expanded upon and popularized in the 1982 non-fiction book "The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail", whose concluding arguments Dan Brown borrowed for his 2003 novel "The Da Vinci Code" and in some ways link to my book, Sarah and Alexander. This is the story of the Masonic Program coming full circle.
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