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Count of St Germain

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Name  Count St.
Role  Courtier
Count of St. Germain SaintGermain The Immortal Count He was an alchemist who
Died  February 27, 1784, Eckernforde, Germany
Books  The Most Holy Trinosophia, The Most Holy Trinosop, The Study of Palmistry for Profes, Practical Astrology: A Simple, The Study of Palmistry
Similar People  Elizabeth Clare Prophet, Mark L Prophet, Manly Hall

Urban legends count of st germain the immortal man

The Comte de Saint Germain (born 1712?; died 27 February 1784) was a European courtier, with an interest in science and the arts. He achieved prominence in European high society of the mid-1700s. Prince Charles of Hesse-Kassel considered him to be "one of the greatest philosophers who ever lived". St. Germain used a variety of names and titles, an accepted practice amongst royals and nobles at the time. These include the Marquis de Montferrat, Comte Bellamarre, Chevalier Schoening, Count Weldon, Comte Soltikoff, Graf Tzarogy and Prinz Ragoczy. In order to deflect inquiries as to his origins, he would invent fantasies, such as that he was 500 years old, leading Voltaire to sarcastically dub him "The Wonderman".


Count of St. Germain Casanova Splatter

His birth and background are obscure, but towards the end of his life he claimed that he was a son of Prince Francis II Rakoczi of Transylvania. His name has occasionally caused him to be confused with Claude Louis, Comte de Saint-Germain, a noted French general, and Robert-Francois Quesnay de Saint Germain, an active occultist.


Count of St. Germain davidprattinfoimagesstgermain5jpg

The Count claimed to be a son of Francis II Rakoczi, the Prince of Transylvania, possibly legitimate, possibly by Duchess Violante Beatrice of Bavaria. This would account for his wealth and fine education. It also explains why kings would accept him as one of their own. The will of Francis II Rakoczi mentions his eldest son, Leopold George, who was believed to have died at the age of four. The speculation is that his identity was safeguarded as a protective measure from the persecutions against the Habsburg dynasty. At the time of his arrival in Schleswig in 1779, St. Germain told Prince Charles of Hesse-Kassel that he was 88 years old. This would place his birth in 1691, when Francis II Rakoczi was 15 years old.

St. Germain was educated in Italy by the last of Medicis, Gian Gastone, his mother's brother-in-law. It is believed that he was a student at the University of Siena.

Historical figure

He appears to have begun to be known under the title of the Count of St Germain during the early 1740s.


According to David Hunter, the Count contributed some of the songs to L'incostanza delusa, an opera performed at the Haymarket Theatre in London on all but one of the Saturdays from 9 February to 20 April 1745. Later, in a letter of December of that same year, Horace Walpole mentions the Count St. Germain as being arrested in London on suspicion of espionage (this was during the Jacobite rebellion) but released without charge:

The other day they seized an odd man, who goes by the name of Count St. Germain. He has been here these two years, and will not tell who he is, or whence, but professes [two wonderful things, the first] that he does not go by his right name; [and the second that he never had any dealings with any woman - nay, nor with any succedaneum (this was censored by Walpole's editors until 1954)] He sings, plays on the violin wonderfully, composes, is mad, and not very sensible. He is called an Italian, a Spaniard, a Pole; a somebody that married a great fortune in Mexico, and ran away with her jewels to Constantinople; a priest, a fiddler, a vast nobleman. The Prince of Wales has had unsatiated curiosity about him, but in vain. However, nothing has been made out against him; he is released; and, what convinces me that he is not a gentleman, stays here, and talks of his being taken up for a spy.

The Count gave two private musical performances in London in April and May 1749. On one such occasion, Lady Jemima Yorke described how she was 'very much entertain'd by him or at him the whole Time - I mean the Oddness of his Manner which it is impossible not to laugh at, otherwise you know he is very sensible & well-bred in conversation'. She continued:

'He is an Odd Creature, and the more I see him the more curious I am to know something about him. He is everything with everybody: he talks Ingeniously with Mr Wray, Philosophy with Lord Willoughby, and is gallant with Miss Yorke, Miss Carpenter, and all the Young Ladies. But the Character and Philosopher is what he seems to pretend to, and to be a good deal conceited of: the Others are put on to comply with Les Manieres du Monde, but that you are to suppose his real characteristic; and I can't but fancy he is a great Pretender in All kinds of Science, as well as that he really has acquired an uncommon Share in some'.

Walpole reports that St Germain:

'spoke Italian and French with the greatest facility, though it was evident that neither was his language; he understood Polish, and soon learnt to understand English and talk it a little [...] But Spanish or Portuguese seemed his natural language'.

Walpole concludes that the Count was 'a man of Quality who had been in or designed for the Church. He was too great a musician not to have been famous if he had not been a gentleman'. Walpole describes the Count as pale, with 'extremely black' hair and a beard. 'He dressed magnificently, [and] had several jewels' and was clearly receiving 'large remittances, but made no other figure'.


St Germain appeared in the French court in around 1748. In 1749 he was employed by Louis XV for diplomatic missions.

A mime and English comedian known as Mi'Lord Gower impersonated St-Germain in Paris salons. His stories were wilder than the real Count's (he had advised Jesus, for example). Inevitably, hearsay of his routine got confused with the original.

Giacomo Casanova describes in his memoirs several meetings with the "celebrated and learned impostor". Of his first meeting, in Paris in 1757, he writes:

The most enjoyable dinner I had was with Madame de Robert Gergi, who came with the famous adventurer, known by the name of the Count de St. Germain. This individual, instead of eating, talked from the beginning of the meal to the end, and I followed his example in one respect as I did not eat, but listened to him with the greatest attention. It may safely be said that as a conversationalist he was unequalled.

St. Germain gave himself out for a marvel and always aimed at exciting amazement, which he often succeeded in doing. He was scholar, linguist, musician, and chemist, good-looking, and a perfect ladies' man. For a while he gave them paints and cosmetics; he flattered them, not that he would make them young again (which he modestly confessed was beyond him) but that their beauty would be preserved by means of a wash which, he said, cost him a lot of money, but which he gave away freely. He had contrived to gain the favour of Madame de Pompadour, who had spoken about him to the king, for whom he had made a laboratory, in which the monarch — a martyr to boredom — tried to find a little pleasure or distraction, at all events, by making dyes. The king had given him a suite of rooms at Chambord, and a hundred thousand francs for the construction of a laboratory, and according to St. Germain the dyes discovered by the king would have a materially beneficial influence on the quality of French fabrics.

In 1760, at the height of the Seven Years' War, St. Germain travelled to Holland where he tried to open peace negotiations between Britain and France. British diplomats concluded that St. Germain had the backing of the Duc de Belle-isle and possibly of Madame de Pompadour, who were trying to outmanoeuvre the French Foreign Minister, the pro-Austrian Duc de Choiseul. However Britain would not treat with St. Germain unless his credentials came directly from the French king. The Duc de Choiseul convinced Louis XV to disavow St. Germain and demand his arrest. Count Bentinck de Rhoon, a Dutch diplomat, regarded the arrest warrant as internal French politicking which Holland should not involve itself in. However, a direct refusal to extradite St. Germain was also considered impolitic. De Rhoon therefore facilitated the departure of St. Germain to England with a passport issued by the British Ambassador, General Joseph Yorke. This passport was made out "in blank", allowing St. Germain to travel under an assumed name, showing that this practice was officially accepted at the time. Peace between Britain and France was later concluded at the Treaty of Paris in 1763.


In 1779 St. Germain arrived in Altona in Schleswig. Here he made an acquaintance with Prince Charles of Hesse-Kassel, who also had an interest in mysticism and was a member of several secret societies. The Count showed the Prince several of his gems and he convinced the latter that he had invented a new method of colouring cloth. The Prince was impressed and installed the Count in an abandoned factory at Eckernforde he had acquired especially for the Count, and supplied him with the materials and cloths that St. Germain needed to proceed with the project. The two met frequently in the following years, and the Prince outfitted a laboratory for alchemical experiments in his nearby summer residence Louisenlund, where they, among other things, cooperated in creating gemstones and jewelry. The Prince later recounts in a letter that he was the only person in whom the Count truly confided. He told the Prince that he was the son of the Transylvanian Prince Francis II Rakoczi, and that he had been 88 years of age when he arrived in Schleswig.

The Count died in his residence in the factory on 27 February 1784, while the Prince was staying in Kassel, and the death was recorded in the register of the St. Nicolai Church in Eckernforde. He was buried 2 March and the cost of the burial was listed in the accounting books of the church the following day. The official burial site for the Count is at Nicolai Church (German St. Nicolaikirche) in Eckernforde. He was buried in a private grave. On April 3 the same year, the mayor and the city council of Eckernforde issued an official proclamation about the auctioning off of the Count's remaining effects in case no living relative would appear within a designated time period to lay claim on them. Prince Charles donated the factory to the crown and it was afterward converted into a hospital.

Jean Fuller-Overton found, during her research, that the Count's estate upon his death was: a packet of paid and receipted bills and quittances, 82 Reichsthalers and 13 shillings (cash), 29 various groups of items of clothing (this includes gloves, stockings, trousers, shirts, etc.), 14 linen shirts, 8 other groups of linen items, and various sundries (razors, buckles, toothbrushes, sunglasses, combs, etc.). There were no diamonds, jewels, gold, or any other riches. There were no kept cultural items from travels, personal items (like his violin), or any notes of correspondence.

Music by The Count

The following list of music comes from Appendix II from Jean Overton-Fuller's book "The Comte de Saint Germain".

Trio Sonatas

Six Sonatas for two violins with a bass for harpsichord or violoncello.

  • Op.47 I. F Major, 4/4, Molto Adagio
  • Op.48 II. B Flat Major, 4/4, Allegro
  • Op.49 III. E Flat Major, 4/4, Adagio
  • Op.50 IV. G Minor, 4/4, Tempo giusto
  • Op.51 V. G Major, 4/4, Moderato
  • Op.52 VI. A Major, 3/4, Cantabile lento
  • Violin Solos

    Seven Solos for a Violin.

  • Op.53 I. B Flat Major, 4/4, Largo
  • Op.54 II. E Major, 4/4, Adagio
  • Op.55 III. C Minor, 4/4, Adagio
  • Op.56 IV. E Flat Major, 4/4, Adagio
  • Op.57 V. E Flat Major, 4/4, Adagio
  • Op.58 VI. A Major, 4/4, Adagio
  • Op.59 VII. B Flat Major, 4/4, Adagio
  • English Songs

  • Op.4 The Maid That's Made For Love and Me (O Wouldst Thou Know What Sacred Charms). E Flat Major (marked B Flat Major), 3/4
  • Op.7 Jove, When He Saw My Fanny's Face. D Major, 3/4
  • Op.5 It Is Not That I Love You Less. F Major, 3/4
  • Op.6 Gentle Love, This Hour Befriend Me. D Major, 4/4
  • Italian Arias

    Numbered in order of their appearance in the Musique Raisonnee, with their page numbers in that volume. * Marks those performed in L'Incostanza Delusa and published in the Favourite Songs from that opera.

  • Op.8 I. Padre perdona, oh! pene, G Minor, 4/4, p. 1
  • Op.9 II. Non piangete amarti, E Major, 4/4, p. 6
  • Op.10 III. Intendo il tuo, F Major, 4/4, p. 11
  • Op.1 IV. Senza pieta mi credi*, G Major, 6/8 (marked 3/8 but there are 6 quavers to the bar), p. 16
  • Op.11 V. Gia, gia che moria deggio, D Major, 3/4, p. 21
  • Op.12 VI. Dille che l'amor mio*, E Major, 4/4, p. 27
  • Op.13 VII. Mio ben ricordati, D Major, 3/4, p. 32
  • Op.2 VIII. Digli, digli*, D Major, 3/4, p. 36
  • Op.3 IX. Per pieta bel Idol mio*, F Major, 3/8, p. 40
  • Op.14 X. Non so, quel dolce moto, B Flat Major, 4/4, p. 46
  • Op.15 XI. Piango, e ver, ma non procede, G minor, 4/4, p. 51
  • Op.16 XII. Dal labbro che t'accende, E Major, 3/4, p. 56
  • Op.4/17 XIII. Se mai riviene, D Minor, 3/4, p. 58
  • Op.18 XIV. Parlero non e permesso, E Major, 4/4, p. 62
  • Op.19 XV. Se tutti i miei pensieri, A Major, 4/4, p. 64
  • Op.20 XVI. Guadarlo, guaralo in volto, E Major, 3/4, p. 66
  • Op.21 XVII. Oh Dio mancarmi, D Major, 4/4, p. 68
  • Op.22 XVIII. Digli che son fedele, E Flat Major, 3/4, p. 70
  • Op.23 XIX. Pensa che sei cruda, E Minor, 4/4, p. 72
  • Op.24 XX. Torna torna innocente, G Major, 3/8, p. 74
  • Op.25 XXI. Un certo non so che veggo, E Major, 4/4, p. 76
  • Op.26 XXII. Guardami, guardami prima in volto, D Major, 4/4, p. 78
  • Op.27 XXIII. Parto, se vuoi cosi, E Flat Major, 4/4, p. 80
  • Op.28 XXIV. Volga al Ciel se ti, D Minor, 3/4, p. 82
  • Op.29 XXV. Guarda se in questa volta, F Major, 4/4, p. 84
  • Op.30 XXVI. Quanto mai felice, D Major, 3/4, p. 86
  • Op.31 XXVII. Ah che neldi'sti, D Major, 4/4, p. 88
  • Op.32, XXVIII. Dopp'un tuo Sguardo, F Major, 3/4, p. 90
  • Op.33 XXIX. Serbero fra'Ceppi, G major, 4/4, 92
  • Op.34 XXX. Figlio se piu non vivi moro, F Major, 4/4, p. 94
  • Op.35 XXXI. Non ti respondo, C Major, 3/4, p. 96
  • Op.36 XXXII. Povero cor perche palpito, G Major, 3/4, p. 99
  • Op.37 XXXIII. Non v'e piu barbaro, C Minor, 3/8, p. 102
  • Op.38 XXXIV. Se de'tuoi lumi al fuoco amor, E major, 4/4, p. 106
  • Op.39 XXXV. Se tutto tosto me sdegno, E Major, 4/4, p. 109
  • Op.40 XXXVI. Ai negli occhi un tel incanto, D Major, 4/4 (marked 2/4 but there are 4 crochets to the bar), p. 112
  • Op.41 XXXVII. Come poteste de Dio, F Major, 4/4, p. 116
  • Op.42 XXXVIII. Che sorte crudele, G Major, 4/4, p. 119
  • Op.43 XXXIX. Se almen potesse al pianto, G Minor, 4/4, p. 122
  • Op.44 XXXX. Se viver non posso lunghi, D Major, 3/8, p. 125
  • Op.45 XXXXI. Fedel faro faro cara cara, D Major, 3/4, p. 128
  • Op.46 XXXXII. Non ha ragione, F Major, 4/4, p. 131
  • Biographies

    The best-known biography is Isabel Cooper-Oakley's The Count of St. Germain (1912), which gives a satisfactory biographical sketch. It is a compilation of letters, diaries and private records written about the Count by members of the French aristocracy who knew him in the 18th century. Another interesting biographical sketch can be found in The History of Magic, by Eliphas Levi, originally published in 1913.

    There have also been numerous French and German biographies, among them Der Wiederganger: Das zeitlose Leben des Grafen von Saint-Germain by Peter Krassa, Le Comte de Saint-Germain by Marie-Raymonde Delorme and L'enigmatique Comte De Saint-Germain by Pierre Ceria and Francois Ethuin. In his work Sages and Seers (1959), Manly Palmer Hall refers to the biography Graf St.-Germain by E. M. Oettinger (1846).

    Books attributed to the Count of St. Germain

    One book attributed to the Count of Saint Germain is La Tres Sainte Trinosophie (The Most Holy Trinosophia), and although there is little evidence that it was written by him, the original was certainly in his possession at one point. There are also two triangular books in the Manly Palmer Hall Collection of Alchemical Manuscripts at the Getty Research Library which are attributed to Saint Germain.

    In Theosophy

    Myths, legends and speculations about St. Germain began to be widespread in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and continue today. They include beliefs that he is immortal, the Wandering Jew, an alchemist with the "Elixir of Life", a Rosicrucian, and that he prophesied the French Revolution. He is said to have met the forger Giuseppe Balsamo (alias Cagliostro) in London and the composer Rameau in Venice. Some groups honor Saint Germain as a supernatural being called an Ascended Master.

    Madame Blavatsky and her pupil, Annie Besant, both claimed to have met the Count who was traveling under a different name.

    In fiction

    The Count has inspired a number of fictional creations:

  • The casquette girl Alys Arden
  • The mystic in the Alexander Pushkin story "The Queen of Spades"
  • He appears in Umberto Eco's Foucault's Pendulum.
  • The anime series Nobunagun features him as a side character and secondary commander of the DOGOO organization.
  • Chelsea Quinn Yarbro used the count as the base for her series character Count Saint-Germain, although only the initial book deals with the historical rather than fictional St. Germain.
  • He is the main character of the historical mystery novel based on his early adventures The Man Who Would Not Die by Paul Andrews. He is presented as the son of Prince Rakoczi.
  • He is an influential character in Katherine Kurtz' novel Two Crowns For America, where he is one of the principal behind-the-scenes leaders in the Masonic connections behind the American Revolution.
  • He is also mentioned as a main character in the Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel series by Michael Scott as an immortal alchemist and teacher of Fire Magic who is married to Joan of Arc.
  • The Count is also one of the main characters in the trilogy of the German writer Kerstin Gier; in it, he is a time traveler who wants to become immortal through use of the philosopher's stone.
  • He appears as a traveler, prestidigitator and perfume researcher that has learned many forms of armed and unarmed combat in Robert Rankin's book The Japanese Devil Fish Girl. In Rankin's The Brentford Trilogy, Professor Slocombe is at one point directly addressed as "St. Germain" by another character, the implication being that the character recognises him as the immortal Count.
  • He appears in Kouta Hirano's manga Drifters.
  • He is a significant character in Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series (specifically 1992's Dragonfly in Amber), and an apparent time traveler in Gabaldon's spin-off novella, "The Space Between".
  • He is a central character in Koji Kumeta's manga Sekkachi Hakushaku to Jikan Dorobou.
  • In Vertigo Comics' Dead Boy Detectives, the Count is a pseudonym taken on by occultist child-murderer Gilles de Rais, his claims of immortality genuine.
  • St. Germain is an NPC in Castlevania: Curse of Darkness. He is a person who can travel through time and constantly asks Hector to abandon his quest.
  • He was possibly the inspiration for the D.Gray-Man manga's Millenium Earl.
  • In the novelization The Night Strangler (from the TV film of the same name), it is strongly hinted that the immortal villain, Dr. Richard Malcolm, is actually the Count St. Germain. When asked directly, Malcolm laughs ironically but does not deny it.
  • He's an important character in Maria Szepes's novel [[The Red Lion (novel)}]], where he's portrayed as the son of Principal Rakoczi, and he's an immortal alchemist in possession of The Philosopher's Stone and a mentor to the protagonist.
  • He's the main antagonist in Ruby Red Trilogy by Kerstin Gier. He's the founder of a secret lodge which is controlling people with a time-travelling gene, and he is trying to gain immortality through said time-travellers.
  • He is portrayed by James Marsters in the SyFy television show Warehouse 13. Introduced as "Bennett Sutton", an expert on the Count, he turns out to be the brother of Paracelsus (Anthony Head). His ring, which contains part of the Philosophers Stone, is used to heal plants and is instrumental in curing the English Sweating Sickness caused when Artie releases the Chinese Orchid. The Count is married to Charlotte Duprey, Countess of St. Germaine with whom he has a son, Nicholas Powell, both of which Paracelsus kidnapped and made immortal along with Sutton.
  • He is one of the main villain in one of the Japanese Sailor Moon musicals. The title of the musical is Last Dracul Saishuu Shou - Chou wakusei Death Vulcan no fuuin.
  • References

    Count of St. Germain Wikipedia

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