26 Sep

While delving in to the figure known as Roger-René Dagobert - i quickly saw that some researchers and published authors quoted him uncritically, in particular a reference to Dr Paul Courrent. 

In describing Dr Courrent a local Midi newspaper reported that "for 30 years, Dr Courrent knew the hard life of the country doctor while traveling the Corbières. Then, he moved to Rennes-les-Bains where he became a consultant doctor. In 1942, he published a very fine reference book: "Rennes-les-Bains, historical, scientific, medical-thermal and tourist monograph".

He gives a revival of vitality to this spa where he does a lot of historical, medical, thermal (with careful analyzes of water from all sources) and even tourist research, pointing out all the famous places of the resort.

Historian, Dr. Paul Courrent was, from 1898 and for more than 50 years, a member of the Society of Scientific Studies of Aude. He will successively become its president (in 1902 and 1926), then the general secretary (in 1927) and finally the director. Passionate about history, he will feed the newsletters of this company with his communications.

Viticulturalist, he was a worthy defender of quality viticulture.

His own wines, bottled by him, appeared on the menu of major hotels and thus made known the supremacy of Aude wines. If Doctor Paul Courrent is a doctor, historian and winegrower, he is also a hydrologist, geologist, heraldist, archaeologist and numismatist. He does not hesitate to make communications and writes numerous booklets resulting from his findings on epidemics, whooping cough and insists on children's hygiene, smoking and vaccination.

On the other hand, he is very interested in Languedoc and the Arts"

He does indeed sounds a worthy man, a Doctor by career serving patients but also a passionate historian and amateur archaeologist. 

He is important in the Rennes Affair because Courrent was Saunière's personal doctor and good friend in his later years until the Abbé's death in 1917. A rich person, he exhibited great activity in the region and especially in Rennes-les-Bains at the time of Saunière. They knew each other well, since he wrote him numerous medical certificates of convenience. He was also BOUDET's doctor. It is he who will go to the bedside of Saunière after his sudden heart attack/stroke in January 1917.

Some researchers claim that Roger-René Dagobert (who was related to the famous General Dagobert) asserted that Saunière entrusted the famous parchments of the Rennes Affair to Dr. Courrent. 

In fact, Roger-René Dagobert claims that Luc Siméon Auguste Dagobert de Fontenille was assassinated because of his family's "double secret": that of being the last representative of the Merovingian line, overshadowing the Bourbons, and because they knew the existence, in the Corbières, of an important treasure which had always belonged to his lineage: the treasure of the Temple of Solomon. 

I have quoted from this site HERE where the author writes that;

"Jean-Pierre François Duhamel, cousin of Dagobert, already a "matchmaker" and witness to the spouses, moreover arranged for the future General to be the sole owner of the Padern forge and the associated mining concessions (Dagobert bought from first the shares of Duhamel and then those of his father-in-law, Joseph-Gaspard Pailhoux de Cascastel).Why? To have a free hand in the search for the Temple treasure.

In 1781, dying, the Marquise d'Hautpoul, Marie de Nègre d'Ables, without a male successor, confided to her parish priest, Antoine Bigou, papers and a secret linked to her family, to which Jacquette Pailhoux was related (in reality in a very distant way) - as well as parchments on Merovingian descent and the presence in the region of the Dagobert descendant in search of a fabulous treasure under the guise of mining. Father Bigou hid certain documents in his church in Rennes-le-Château and, after the revolution, fleeing to Spain, he "stashed" what he had learned there.

The Bourbons of Spain therefore wanted to appropriate the "treasure" and, upset by Dagobert, decided as a last resort to eliminate this possible claimant to the Crown ( this was by no means the case).

The sieur Dubosc who reopened the mines of Cardou, in Rennes-les-Bains, was in the pay of General Dagobert with the complicity of Duhamel, correspondent of the Academy of Sciences and King's Commissioner for Mines and Forges.

Freemason Dagobert confided his secret to the Grand-Orient, which protected his person when necessary. The Marquis de Chefdebien discovered this secret in part by the presence of Pailhoux in his lodge and by his various participations in the Masonic convents. Roger-René believes that the Philadelphes, the lodge created by the "monarchist" Marquis de Chefdebien, would have been the real promoters of the General's assassination.

At the end of the 19th century, after having found the documents hidden by Bigou, Father Saunière negotiated very dearly with the Royalists for the information he had, in particular on the existence of a magnificent treasure, which he believed to be buried in Rennes-le -Chateau.

In the 1950s, Pierre Plantard had access to certain Chefdebien archives that Doctor Paul Courrent kept at his home (Roger-René does not explicitly state that it was he who stole them): they contained, in part, information on Merovingian descendants, Dagobert and a fabulous treasure. Plantard drew his personal fable from it and built his entire myth around Rennes-le-château.

This is the version of Roger-René Dagobert.

According to him, the mines of Corbières, in particular those located between Cascastel and Padern, would contain or would have contained the mysterious treasure of the Temple of Solomon, probably fragmented in various places ... This is his deduction from the reading, in particular, of "Jules Verne, initiate and initiator" by Michel Lamy.

In fact, in small quantities in polymetallic ores (primary deposits), the only gold present and extracted from these cavities was that produced by mining, probably started nearly 2,500 years ago.

Roger-René embellishes the story, influenced as he is by the mythological saga of the Rennes-le-Château affair. How can it be otherwise, since he endeavored to try to demonstrate the "Merovingian ancestry" of the Dagobert family?

However, there are facts reported by which are proven or plausible: the mining of Pailhoux, Dagobert and Dubosc, the possible poisoning of General Dagobert, the probable Masonic membership of Dagobert and Pailhoux ... On the other hand, in a letter addressed to a correspondent named Alain and whose name we will keep silent, Roger-René quotes two extracts from bulletins of the Archaeological Commission of Narbonne (Roger-René had the habit of sending copies of his letters to various third parties people, especially town halls, for information):

"In the bulletin of the Archaeological Commission of Narbonne, volume XVI, year 1943, we read: Session of Monday 16/12/1940, the Secretary reads a note relating to the archives of Chefdebien, given to the commission by the heirs of Marie-Louise de Chefdebien, dcd in Narbonne in May 1939. Our eminent correspondent was able to examine part of these seigneurial archives (including those of the Pailhoux and the Dagobert) importance to entrust an archivist study and complete ranking of this fund containing particularly rare and precious manuscripts.

In another No. of this bulletin, we read: Meeting of 03.02.1954, the Secretary indicates that the family of Chefdebien made reclaim the family archives of the succession of Marie-Louise dcd in Narbonne in May 1939. Embarrassment of the commission, since the precious documents disappeared shortly after the death of Doctor Courrent to whom they had been entrusted."

These two extracts are at least incomplete, arranged and for the second completely "modified". Roger-René does not give the right volume of the first extract and deliberately omits that of the second. Here are the original texts of these minutes of the Commission, to which we add a third essential:

Volume XXI, year 1943, meeting of Monday December 16, 1940;

Meeting of Monday December 16, 1940, the Secretary read out a note addressed by Mr. Jean Régné relating to the archives of Chefdebien, given to the commission by the heirs of Marie-Louise de Chefdebien, who died in Narbonne in May 1939. Our eminent correspondent was able to examine part of these seigneurial archives, pointing out the extreme richness and draws attention to the importance of entrusting a specialist archivist with the study and complete classification of this collection, which contains particularly rare and precious manuscripts. Mr. Pago adds that the events of the last few months have hampered the continuation of this work, which also collaborated with Father Sigal and Mr. Jean Rigaud. The assembly welcomes such a donation to increase the richness of our archives and hopes that a complete inventory can be drawn up in the near future, in accordance with Mr. Régné's wishes.
In the meantime, unanimous thanks are voted to the family of Chefdebien, as well as to MM.Pago and Sigal, to whose active efforts we owe the possession of these documents.

Volume XXIII, year 1954, meeting of Wednesday February 3, 1954, 

The Secretary reports that the family of Chefdebien requested the family archives from the estate of Miss Marie-Louise de Chefdebien, who died in Narbonne in May 1939, and which had been , in 1940, entrusted to Mr. Pago, then president of our Company. But, according to the minutes of our meeting of December 16, 1940, which are read, it seems that these archives had been given to the Archaeological Commission, since thanks for this donation were voted at that time to the heirs of Chefdebien. Some of these documents were analyzed by the archivist Jean Régné who recognized their extreme importance for local history. These archives, still in Mr. Pago's hands, must still be in the apartment he occupied and where his furniture is stored. The assembly decides to get in touch with its former president, with a view to transporting these precious documents to the municipal archives where they will be more sheltered from a claim that seems quite unjustified. The Bureau is responsible for taking the necessary steps in this regard.

Volume XXIII, year 1954, meeting of June 2, 1954:

The Secretary hands over to the Commission on behalf of Mr. Paul Pago, two large albums of archaeological documents found in the Library of his father, our former president, as well as a large 15th century manuscript account book in Latin and Roman; this last work is entrusted to Dr. Cayla who is in charge of its reading and its study. In addition, Mr. Pago returned to Mr. Caillard a bundle of documents from the donation made to the Commission by the family of Chefdebien, and that our former president had kept in his office. These papers were examined by Mr. Sacaze who gave the assembly a brief overview of their content. They concern the viscount of Chefdebien, d'Armissan, who lived at the end of the 18th century and had been elected on January 2, 1789 president of the nobility of the District of Narbonne, for the session of the States General; he was also the mayor of Bizanet and affiliated with a Masonic lodge, and in these various capacities had had many difficulties with his compatriots or colleagues. But there seems to be little information about local history in this file.

From the original documents then, it appears that:

  • there is no parenthesis in the first extract: (including those of Pailhoux and Dagobert).
  • Mr. Pago had these archives and not Dr. Paul Courrent.There is no phrase "Embarrassment of the Commission, since the precious documents disappeared shortly after the death of Doctor Courrent to whom they had been entrusted". Others will also use this "source".
  • Mr Pago, Jr., at the request of the Commission, returned to the latter the archives held by his father.
  • These documents were placed in the Municipal Archives of the city of Narbonne.

The theft of part of the Chefdebien family archives, in 1952, from the home of Doctor Paul Courrent, member of the Archaeological Commission of Narbonne (CAN) and of the SESA (Society of Scientific Studies of Aude) would be therefore a myth and to say that these archives contained information or documents on the Pailhoux and Dagobert families would be very hypothetical, even totally false.

Roger-René Dagobert seems to have arranged certain sources so that they "stick" to his delusions about "Rennes-le-Château".

This in no way prejudges a possible theft of other documents after the death of the local scholar.

According to Roger-René, the doctor's nephews would have confirmed this looting of documents to him ... Are we to believe it? Or is it still a fable?

If anyone has further information please feel free to email me. 

* The email will not be published on the website.