The Story - 1st
Marie d'Hautpoul and Father Bigou
Antoine Bigou had
succeeded his uncle Jean as priest of Rennes le Château in 1774 .He was the
confessor of marchioness of Hautpoul.It is said that she told him a very important family
secret and gave him some documents just before she died. It is said that she asked him to
tell the secret to another person who would understand it's importance. Marie de Négri
Dables, Lady of Hautpoul died on January 17th 1781 and was buried in Rennes le
Bigou hid the documents in one
of the pillar that held the altar in the church.
In 1791,he laid a flagstone on
the marchioness tomb.
He had some strange signs
carved on the tombstone : ET IN ARCADIA EGO :I who am also in Arcadia
Moreover,as the lady died on
January 17th 1781,the date on the grave should be MDCCLXXXI instead of MDC O
In the church,he had the
Knights flagstone laid before the altar,but the sculpted side was facing the ground.
He was considered a non-juring
priest and he had to flee to Sabadell,Spain,where he died on March 21st 1794
after he had told the secret to Father Jean Vié (priest in Rennes les Bains) and to
Father Emile François Cayron (priest in St Laurent de la Cabrerisse). Both men were
priests of their towns from 1840 to 1872
The signs on the tomb were
erased by Sauniere ,but we know of 2 reproductions of it.One
was made by Eugène Cros( an amateur archeologist),the other by Eugène Stublein.On
Stubleins drawing though,the greek letters ( et in arcadia ego) do not appear.