“The Da Vinci Code” is a book written by Dan Brown, published in 2003, where the role of Mary Magdalene within Christianity is questioned. This caused a lot of controversy, since this work is considered to be a direct attack against the Catholic Church. Furthermore, through this book, interest is unleashed not only for the work of this famous painter and artist, but also speculation about the Holy Grail is addressed.
Characters from “The Da Vinci Code”:
Within the book we can find different characters such as Robert Langdon, who is interested in discovering the mystery of the Holy Grail. Similarly we find other characters such as Jacques Saunière, who clandestinely runs the Priory of Sion, and is also the grandfather of Sophie Neveu, who was murdered.
Sophie is a cryptographer from the French Police; Bezu Fache is an officer of the Central Directorate of the Judicial Police; Silas is an albino member of the apostolic organization Opus Dei; Bishop Manuel Aringarosa is the general chief of the formation of Opus Dei and the head of Silas; Sister Sandrine, killed by Silas, lived in Saint Sulpice.
For his part, André Vernet is the president of the Paris branch of the Depository Bank of Zurich; Leigh Teabing is the central antagonist of the story; Jérôme Collet who is the second in command of Captain Bezu Fache, Pamela Gettum and Marie Chauvel.
Summary and synopsis of the work:
This story begins with Jacques Saunière, who was the curator of the Louvre and a great teacher of the Priory of Sion. He was murdered in the museum by Silas, who worked for “the Master,” and claims to know where the cornerstone is located. So he points a gun at Langdon and forces him to tell him the password for the second cryptex, which was the word “apple.”
For this reason, Robert Langdon clandestinely takes the cryptex and deletes its content. Teabing is caught by Fache, who realized that Langdon was not guilty. The message has a Fibonacci cycle. Langdon tells Fache that Saunière was an authority leader regarding the subject of the goddess’ artwork and that the pentagon drawn by Saunière on his chest with his own blood is an allusion to the goddess and does not refer to a devil worship, as Fache thinks.
On the other hand, Sophie Neveu confesses to Langdon that she is Saunière’s distant granddaughter. She is concerned that her grandfather has participated in clandestine pagan cults. However, she was aware that her grandfather wanted Langdon to crack the code, in order to get to the safe.
So Langdon and Neveu run away from the police and go to the bank. In the safe, they find a box that has the cornerstone that is a cryptex, and in case it is forced, a closed vinegar pathway breaks and will immediately delete the message, which was written on parchment .
The box that the cryptex has contains traces of its password. So Neveu and Langdon bring the cornerstone to the home of Sir Leigh Teabing, who is a friend of Langdon and an expert on the subject of the Holy Grail, in which the Priory is also linked. Teabing informs them that the Grail does not mean the cup, but refers to a tomb where the bones of Mary Magdalene remain.
So these three characters go out of the country in a private plane that had Teabing, and discover that the right combination of letters corresponds to the name of “Neveu, Sophie”.
When they open the cryptex, they find a smaller one inside it, which has another puzzle that ultimately leads them to Isaac Newton’s grave at Westminster Abbey. In the course of the flight to Great Britain, Neveu reveals why he stayed away from his grandfather, and it was that one day he arrived inadvertently and witnessed a spring fertility ritual that was taking place in the secret basement of the farm of his grandfather. From that moment he ran away from the house and completely ignored his grandfather.
Then it is discovered that Teabing is the Master who works for Silas, he wants to use the Holy Grail, where it is revealed that Jesus Christ married Mary Magdalene and they had children. This is for the purpose of dismantling the Vatican. He forces Langdon with a gun so he can figure out what the password for the second cryptex is, and Langdon had already resolved that it was designated by the word “apple.” So Langdon opens the cryptex and deletes its contents before launching the empty cryptex into the air.
In the course of the story of “The Da Vinci Code” Teabing is arrested by Fache, who realized that Langdon was not guilty. Bishop Aringarosa, who ran the Opus Dei religious sect and was Silas’s instructor, when he realized that Silas had been used to kill innocents, decides to help the police find him.
The police find Silas hidden in an Opus Dei Center, he thinks they want to kill him and so he shoots, wounding Bishop Aringarosa, but he manages to survive. Some time later Silas is found dead due to a gunshot wound. Later it is revealed that Neveu and his brother are heirs of the blood of Mary Magdalene and Jesus Christ. But the Priory of Sion protected these people. Finally the conclusive message is that the Grail is buried underneath the little pyramid, and Langdon glimpses this key piece of the puzzle.
Analysis of the work:
In “The Da Vinci Code” the central secret related to the Holy Grail has to do with the fact that the figure that is on the right of Jesus in Da Vinci’s painting of The Last Supper, does not refer to the apostle John, but actually it’s Mary Magdalene. In addition Teabing highlights the fact that the chalice is not within the artist’s painting, so Mary Magdalene constitutes the authentic Holy Grail and the bearer of the blood of Jesus. So this book proposes another reading of history that causes controversy and generates some discomfort, especially for devotees and Christian and Catholic believers. Finally in “The Da Vinci Code” it is stated that The Holy Grail is not a physical cup, but rather refers to a woman, Mary Magdalene, who carried the lineage of Christ.
“And in the end, choosing which side of the story we are left with becomes a matter of faith and personal exploration”
“Jesus was a historical figure of immense influence, perhaps the most enigmatic and inspiring leader that humanity has ever had”
“When there is a clash between two cultures, the loser is eradicated and the winner writes the history books, books that sing the glories of their cause and denigrate the conquered enemy” “As Napoleon once said,” What is the history but a consensual fable? ”… Given its very nature, history is always a unilateral account of the facts”