Michel de Nostredame lived during the height of bubonic plague. While we remember him mainly for the famous prophecies he left behind, that particular aspect didn’t surface until later in his life.
Before he became known as a Seer, he was a self-learned apothecary (kind of like a modern-day pharmacist). He discovered that while there was no cure for the plague, cleanliness could slow its spread. Considering that the plague was perpetuated by infected rats, it was a good conclusion to make.
It wasn’t until he visited Italy that his second sight surfaced. Although having this particular gift was dangerous in his time of religious zealotry, Nostradamus managed to conceal his prophecies in undecipherable prose. (I say undecipherable because I’ve read a lot of his predictions and I’m still scratching my head.) Between 1555 and his death in 1566, Nostradamus published his prophecies in ten volumes, titling them Century I – X.
For The History Channel’s article on Nostradamus, click here.