Okay now for something completely different. Things have taken a strange turn lately. I thought I was writing a book of complete fiction – Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate seemed just that but now I find there are more elements in my family history (which I have been researching for 15 years or more) that overlap the book than I realised.
Although I set part of the book in the home town of my family – Nevers in France, I did not realise at the time that one of my ancestors was called Loup Le Moignon (literally Wolf Moignon) or that the family has strong connections with the cathedral mentioned in the book. In fact there is more than one strong connection and one of my ancestors, Robert Le Moignon was in fact fined by the Catholic church (around 1540/50) for some unspecified crime and had to pay a fine in bushels of wheat for many years. There seem to be tentative clues that one of them – possibly Robert was a Cathar-sympathiser or perhaps even a Cathar himself. There are also some connections, though loose for the moment, to the whole Cathar scene around Rennes-le-Château and Montsegur which of course is the location of the last Cathar outpost – besieged in 1244 and mentioned in Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate.
Robert was Lord of several fiefs around Donzy and Nevers, like his father and his father before him, and later the family produces Counts of Nevers and later they became friends of the French Royal family culminating in Guillaume Cretien de La Moignon (the ‘de’ is probably pretentious) who personally defended Louis XVI in court and was himself beheaded. The first Lord in the family was Guillaume around 1240 but it is a mystery where the money – which the family clear had, came from. Until this time they were relatively unknown. You can see this part of the family history online on google books here:
Early La Moignon history
I have also found strangely that there is a mountain pass called Pas de Loup near Rennes-le-Château which is curious – I thought that would translate as the Wolf Pass, my French not being very good, but in fact it translates to ‘not-wolf’ or ‘non-wolf’. How strange is that? It does somewhat suggest a werewolf – the only thing that comes to mind when I think of non-wolves.
I have not been able to find yet the person who links the one part of the tree to the other but it is most likely a descendent of Robert in fact, since it seems to have had some reason for Jamys Monyar to come to England as an iron-worker and for him to have abandoned the original spelling of the name, but not entirely. Robert didn’t marry and only had one illegitimate daughter, Jeanne who did in fact marry well. Another reason I think Robert was the progenitor of my branch of the family is because all other branches have well documented lives of the children but there is a scarcity of material about Jeanne and her children.
On a slightly different note, but relevant to the whole Rennes-le-Château mystery is that I keep getting the strong feeling that William the Conqueror (as he is known in England) was in fact the reincarnation of Dagobert II. Their childhood stories are so alike, it is uncanny. This idea has been coming into my head for some time and just won’t go away.