1503 - Nostradamus, Latinised name of Michel de Nostredame, born on the 14th of December in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence in the south of France, was one of the world's most famous publishers of prophecies.
1455 - The latter's family had originally been Jewish, but Jaume's father, Guy Gassonet, had converted to Catholicism, taking the Christian name "Pierre" and the surname "Nostredame" (the latter apparently from the saint's day on which his conversion was solemnized).
1525 - Graduated from the University of Montpellier, where he had studied both medicine and astrology, a common professional duality during the era.
1529 - After some years as an apothecary, he entered the University of Montpellier to study for a doctorate in medicine. He was expelled shortly afterwards when it was discovered that he had been an apothecary, a manual trade expressly banned by the university statutes.
1531 - Invited by Jules-César Scaliger, a leading Renaissance scholar, to come to Agen. There he married a woman of uncertain name (possibly Henriette d'Encausse), who bore him two children.
1544 - Torrential rains were again bringing pestilence to southern France, and Nostradamus appeared in Marseilles, then Aix; with his medicinal practices he managed to halt the spread of disease in the latter and was again celebrated for his skills.
1547 - Settled in Salon-de-Provence in the house which exists today, where he married a rich widow named Anne Ponsarde, with whom he had six children, three daughters and three sons.
1550 - 1565 - Began writing about when he undertook the first of his Almanacs, which appeared annually.
1554 - Began working on Centuries on Good Friday.
1566 - Nostradamus' gout, which had plagued him painfully for many years and made movement very difficult, turned into Oedema, or dropsy.
1566 - The evening of the 1st of July, he is alleged to have told his secretary Jean de Chavigny, "You will not find me alive at sunrise." The next morning he was reportedly found dead 2nd of July, lying on the floor next to his bed and a bench as posthumously edited by Chavigny to fit). He was buried in the local Franciscan chapel (part of it now incorporated into the restaurant La Brocherie) but re-interred in the Collégiale St-Laurent at the French Revolution, where his tomb remains to this day.
Page last updated: 12:47am, 02nd Mar '07