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Home >The Vatican's time machine - The Chronovisor by Father Ernetti


The Vatican's time machine - The Chronovisor by Father Ernetti

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chronovisor


In the early 1960s, Father Ernetti began to study the writings of François Brune, himself a Roman Catholic priest and author. Ernetti allegedly ended up helping Father Brune construct the machine as members of a team which included twelve world-famous scientists. He identified two of them as Enrico Fermi and Wernher von Braun. The chronovisor was described as a large cabinet with a cathode ray tube for viewing the received events and a series of buttons, levers, and other controls for selecting the time and the location to be viewed. It could also locate and track specific individuals. According to its inventor, it worked by receiving, decoding and reproducing the electromagnetic radiation left behind from past events. It could also pick up the audio component or sound waves emitted by these same events.

Ernetti lacked hard evidence for these claims. He said that he had observed, among other historical events, Christ's crucifixion and photographed it as well. A copy of this image, Ernetti said, appeared in the 2 May 1972 issue of La Domenica del Corriere, an Italian weekly news magazine. A near-identical (mirror-image) photograph, however, of a wood carving by the sculptor Cullot Valera turned up and succeeded in casting doubt upon Ernetti's statement.

Using the chronovisor, Ernetti said that he had witnessed, among other scenes, a performance in Rome in 169 BC of the lost tragedy, Thyestes, by the father of Latin poetry, Quintus Ennius. Dr. Katherine Owen Eldred of Princeton University is the author of an English rendition of the text which is included as an appendix to the American printing of Peter Krassa's book on the Chronovisor. Doctor Eldred believes that Father Ernetti actually wrote the supposedly ancient play himself. As provided by an anonymous relative of Father Ernetti, there was a deathbed confession, included in the American edition of the play, that Ernetti had written the text of the play himself and that the "photo" of Christ was indeed a "lie". According to the same "source", however, Ernetti also affirmed that the machine was genuinely functional.

Father Brune, however, does not believe Ernetti's "confession" and is convinced that the authorities had coerced Ernetti into making a false confession. The alleged existence of the chronovisor has fueled a whole series of conspiracy theories, such as that the device was seized and is actually used by the Vatican or by those who secretly control governments and their economies all around the world.


An eccentric priest claimed he had a machine that could see into the past. Was his story folly or fancy?

In his little 12 by 12 foot monastic cell Father Pellegrino Ernetti greeted Father Francois Brune one afternoon in the early 1960's. The two men had just met for the first time the day before during a ferry ride across Venice's Grand Canal. During their short conversation, Father Ernetti had said something that stuck in Father Brune's mind. The two, who were both experts on ancient languages, were talking about scriptural interpretation when Father Ernetti remarked that there existed a machine that could easily answer all their questions.

Father Ernetti's Proof

The play Thyestes was written by Quintus Ennius who was born 239 B.C. in what is now Calabria, Italy. Ennius is sometimes called the "Father of Latin Poetry" and over the course of his lifetime he wrote about 20 plays and an epic poem on the history of Rome called Annals. Only a few fragments of his work survive. His last play Thyestes was produced only shortly before his death in 169 B.C.. Scholars have wondered about this play for centuries. Though they know what the story was about based on the writings of the first century author Seneca, the actual text, except for a few lines, has been lost to history.

Sometime in the late 60's a Professor Giuseppe Marasca became interested in the stories he was reading about Father Ernetti and his machine. Marasca contacted Ernetti and eventually they became friends. Ernetti promised to show Marasca his machine, but never did. What he did present to the professor was a handwritten manuscript of what he indicated was the complete play, Thyestes, that he had supposedly copied down while watching the chronovisor. Marasca held onto the text for a number of years, refusing to show it to anybody. Eventually he passed copies to select individuals including Father Brune.

A second piece of evidence that Father Ernetti released was a picture of Christ's face while he was on the cross, apparently photographed through the chronovisor. The photo shows the face of a bearded man with upturned eyes. It wasn't long, however, before someone noticed that the picture was identical (except being reversed left-to-right) to one sold at the Sanctuary of Merciful Love in Collevalenza, Italy. The photograph shows a wooden carving of Jesus in the sanctuary by the Spanish artist Cullot Valera.


After this revelation Father Ernetti said little more about the photograph and the chronovisor. He died in 1994.

As for the manuscript of Thyestes that he said he had transcribed from watching the play on the chronovisor, it seems too short - only 120 lines - for it to be the full play. Most plays of this type would have been ten times as long. Dr. Katherine Owen Eldred of Princeton University, an expert on the play who translated the manuscript for the American edition of the book Father Ernetti's Chronovisor, suspects that isn't authentic. Many of the words used in this manuscript didn't appear in the Latin language until over two centuries after the play was first performed. The type of words and the way they are repeated also suggest that the person who composed the manuscript had limited skills in Latin. As Ennius, the playwright, was using his native language this seems very strange. This makes one wonder if the author wasn't Ennius, but Father Ernetti himself.

The Chronovisor has been described as a large cabinet with antennae made from alloys of unknown metals, a connected cathode ray tube, and a control panel of buttons and levers. According to “The Vatican’s New Mystery”, Father Ernetti claimed that the Chronovisor could be programmed to view and record specific times, locations, and even people in the past or future. Father Ernetti further claimed that the Chronovisor functioned by processing electromagnetic radiation residue from past events.

Father Ernetti purported to have personally seen a number of important historical events with the Chronovisor, the most notable being the crucifixion of Christ. In 1972, the May issue of Italian weekly news magazine, “La Domenica del Corriere” (Courier's Sunday), published a photo depicting the crucifixion and claimed that it had been taken with the Chronovisor. Father Ernetti denied this, citing the photo’s clarity and proximity as uncharacteristic of the Chronovisor’s photographic capabilities. The photo later revealed to be strikingly similar to a reverse-image of a wood carving by sculptor, Cullot Valera.


In addition to the crucifixion and a speech given by Napoleon Bonaparte, Father Ernetti also claimed to have seen a 169 BC production of the tragedy, “Thyestes”, which has been considered a lost work in modern times as only a few fragments of the text remain intact. Father Ernetti claimed to have reconstructed the entire text, which was later translated to English by Princeton University professor, Dr. Katherine Owen Eldred. Eldred noted in her analysis that she believed Ernetti had written the play himself rather than transcribing an original performance.

In a 2003 interview, François Brune relayed that a few months prior to Father Ernetti’s death in 1994, Ernetti told him that he had just partaken in a meeting at the Vatican with the last remaining scientists who worked on the Chronovisor. According to Father Ernetti via Brune, the Chronovisor had been dismantled by that time. On his death bed, Father Ernetti reportedly recanted his claims of the Chronovisor; however, Brune theorized that Ernetti was coerced into making a false confession.

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