FACT CHECK: Did Nostradamus predict the coronavirus outbreak?

Brad Sylvester, DCNF

A Facebook post claims that 16th-century French astrologer Michel de Nostredame, commonly referred to as Nostradamus, predicted the coronavirus outbreak.

Verdict: False

There is no evidence that Nostradamus ever wrote this alleged prophecy. It is not found in any of his written works.

Fact Check:

The internet is replete with claims that Nostradamus has predicted various significant world events that occurred after his death in 1566. This particular post credits him with foretelling the outbreak of the new coronavirus that has sickened hundreds of thousands of people worldwide.

“There will be a twin year (2020) from which will arise a queen (Corona) who will come from the east (China) and who will spread a plague (virus) in the darkness of night on a country with 7 hills (Italy) and will transform the Twilight of men into dust (death), to destroy and ruin the world,” reads the alleged prophecy Nostradamus made in 1551. “It will be the end of the world economy as you know it.”

But there’s no evidence that Nostradamus ever actually wrote this prophecy. It does not appear in his 1555 book “Les Prophéties” or any of his other collected works. An internet search failed to return any results prior to 2020, indicating that the quote is likely a modern creation.

As the post alludes to, the coronavirus outbreak originated in China and has since spread to countries around the world, including Italy, which has become one of the hardest hit nations, per World Health Organization data. The global economy has also taken a massive hit amid countries urging people not to gather in public spaces and instituting shutdowns, among other measures, to help curb the pandemic’s spread.

Nostradamus fans have previously credited the 16th-century astrologer with predicting the Great Fire of London in 1666 and the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in his 1555 book of prophecies.

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