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The Man Who Wouldn't Die

Updated on July 7, 2015

St. Germain

His name was the Comte De Count St. Germain, an alchemist who is said to have discovered the secret to eternal life. He wasn’t a Saint, and more than likely not even a count. Nothing is known for certain about when or where he was born, except records indicate it may have been in the late 1600s.

But, there is no question he was a real person. He first appeared in Europe around 1710, although some say he was around at the time of Christ and attended the wedding at Cana and present at the council of Nicaea in 325 A.D. Others believe he was born long before any actual documentation shows and was immortal.

However, a genealogy compiled by Annie Besant and published in her co-authored book, The Comte De St. Germain: The Secret of Kings,claims he was born the son of Francis Racoczi II, Prince of Transylvania in 1690.

So, many things have been said about him it is difficult to separate fact from fiction. Many investigators think he was probably a man of noble birth who had to hide his true identity because of some family scandal. Whoever he was, he never said anything about the circumstances of his birth. However, he was an actual person and some facts about his life are known.

At the time he first surfaced, he looked to be in his mid-forties…and he never seemed to age. People who had met him and then saw him decades later were astonished to find he looked exactly the same.

Not much information about him exists before 1740. It is thought he was in Persia studying alchemy. During the next several years he traveled abroad going to Versailles, England and Vienna where he met Frederick the Great and then on to Edinburgh in 1745. Even notables such as the famous French writer, historian and philosopher François-Marie Arouet, better, known as Voltaire, were impressed by the man. According to Voltaire, "he is a man who never dies, and knows everything."


For the next ten years not much is heard about him. But in 1755 he shows up in India for a while. Afterwards King Louis XV invited St. Germain to stay in the Royal Chateau of Chambord in Touraine. From 1760 on he seems to be a world traveler again popping up in England, The Hague, Russia, Germany and Bavaria. He was also known by many other prominent figures of European history, including Casanova, Madame de Pampadour, Catherine the Great, Anton Mesmer and others.

Casanova later said, "This extraordinary man would say in an easy, assured manner, he was 300 years old, knew the secret of the Universal Medicine, possessed a mastery over nature and could melt diamonds. All this, he said, was mere trifle to him."

Besides being one to have traveled extensively, what was it about this man everyone found so intriguing? Descriptions of St. Germain say he struck an imposing figure and had piercing, inquisitive eyes. He was a talented musician, composer and an accomplished harpsichord player who worked with Tchaikovsky. Two of his works are in the British Museum. One was written in 1745, the other in 1760. However, although impressive, these attributes would hardly merit serious attention. Here are a few facts which could have explained his notoriety:

· He could speak Sanskrit, Chinese and Arabic, Swedish, Portuguese, Dutch, French, Italian, German, Spanish and Russian.

· He was a renowned painter.

· He claimed the ability to melt and fix flawed diamonds.

· He often made strange comments about his age and spoke about the past as if he had been there.

· Someone once commented a person with his knowledge and skills would have to be more than one hundred years old. Germain replied it was “not impossible.”

· He said he could turn lead into silver or gold.

· He claimed to have created an elixir to make people immortal.

· He was a master on the violin.

One account which may explain the notion he was immortal occurred in 1760 at the home of Madame de Pompadour, mistress of King Louis XV of France where he was attending a soiree. She had once met Germain in 1710 while in Venice. Seeing him again she was astounded to see he hadn’t appeared to age. She assumed it must have been his father she had met. But Germain explained it was indeed him she had met 50 years earlier.

Since his documented death and burial February 27, 1784 many have claimed to be the Count of St. Germain, even as recently as the 1970s. Others claim to have seen him in various places. For someone who was supposedly dead he was apparently still getting around quite well. For instance, in 1785 he was seen in Germany with the pioneer hypnotist Anton Mesmer. And official records of Freemasonry show they chose Germain as their representative for a convention in the same year.

St. Germain has also been linked to several other secret societies, including the Rosicrucian’s, Society of Asiatic Brothers, the Knights of Light, the Illuminati and Order of the Templar’s.

During the French Revolution in 1789, the Comtesse d' Adhémar said she had a conversation with Germain. He reportedly predicted France's immediate future. In 1821, she penned: "I have seen Saint-Germain again, each time to my amazement. I saw him when queen Antoinette was murdered, on the 18th of Brumaire, on the day following the death of the Duke d' Enghien, in January, 1815, and on the eve of the murder of the Duke de Berry." The last time she saw him was in 1820 at which time she described him as looking no older than a man in his mid-40s.

After 1821, Germain seems to have begun assuming other identities. Noted French journalist, Albert Vandam, wrote about meeting a man who looked like Count de Saint-Germain, but went by the name of Major Fraser.

"He called himself Major Fraser, lived alone and never alluded to his family. Moreover he was lavish with money, though the source of his fortune remained a mystery to everyone. He possessed a marvelous knowledge of all the countries in Europe at all periods. His memory was absolutely incredible and, curiously enough, he often gave his hearers to understand that he had acquired his learning elsewhere than from books. Many is the time he has told me, with a strange smile, that he was certain he had known Nero, had spoken with Dante, and so on." Major Fraser later mysteriously disappeared without a trace.

There were many other supposed sightings, the most recent in 1972. A man claiming to be Saint-Germain appeared on French television in Paris, but went by the name of Richard Chanfray. To prove his claim he apparently turned lead into gold before the cameras. Chanfray later committed suicide in 1983.

So who was Count Saint Germain dubbed “The Man Who Wouldn’t Die”? Did he discover the secret of eternal life? Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction.


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    • Paul W Andrews profile image

      Paul W Andrews 3 years ago from Durham, NC

      Thanks for the well researched piece. I've been interested in the Count for years. So much so that I wrote a fictional take on his early adventures entitled, 'The Man Who Would Not Die." A lot more at by website including links to booksellers and free sample chapters.

    • profile image

      C. Jackson 3 years ago

      Hello, I am here to post this merely to share my knowledge of the great life of the Count, he was indeed a Count..... he became a Count in 1742 and he was born in February 1692, he lived on his own by 1700 and finished a school about 1716 I believe, I could be mistaken. I haven't a good memory. He left for Persia, I believe, in 1738 and began learning alchemy from a great teacher, he became a great alchemist by 1740. He performed at the Little Haymarket Theatre in 1745 I believe, from February to April I think. He once was accused of being a charlatan and he wasn't too pleasured by that, he asked the person to leave his residence. Ha, ha..... Anyway, the Count suffered from extreme pneumonia in February 1784 and became ill and supposedly died around 10:30 in the morn on the 27th of Feb. in 1784..... he was buried in March that year, decades later his casket showed no remains.

    • Paradise7 profile image

      Paradise7 6 years ago from Upstate New York

      It reminds me of the sstories of the wandering Jew. I love these stories, I don't care if they are true or not. Thanks for sharing this one with us.

    • Lucky Cats profile image

      Kathy 6 years ago from The beautiful Napa Valley, California


    • JY3502 profile image

      John Young 6 years ago from Florence, South Carolina

      Did I tell you all about the time me and Davy Crockett were down at the Alamo and...

    • Lucky Cats profile image

      Kathy 6 years ago from The beautiful Napa Valley, California

      Really amazing...John, besides your comment (pulling our proverbial 'leg(s)' are you?)..I am curious about this character..very interesting. Chasuk has shared some excellent suggestions for those of us who want to delve deeper into this mystery. I am fascinated by even the hint at such a possibility....always wanting to believe there is much much more than what our 5 senses perceive. Thanks, John..Up Interesting Awesome!!!

    • JY3502 profile image

      John Young 6 years ago from Florence, South Carolina

      Actually Y'all, this is my autobiography. LOL

    • profile image

      Chasuk 6 years ago

      There is an entertaining series of novels about this gentleman by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro. Highly recommended.

    • PETER LUMETTA profile image

      PETER LUMETTA 6 years ago from KENAI, ALAKSA

      I would love to meet this guy. Hope he's still around. Great story, Thanks,


    • The Dirt Farmer profile image

      Jill Spencer 6 years ago from United States

      It's obvious! He's an alien. (: