To summarize Part 1, an ex-pirate known as ‘Le Butin’ left a will, two letters, and an enciphered note describing where he had buried treasure on Île de France (the former French name for Mauritius). But even though this is widely referred to as the “La Buse Cryptogram”, I can’t see any obvious reason to connect the pirate Olivier Levasseur (‘La Buse’) with it. Anyway, our story continues…

The documents were retrieved from the Archives Nationales de la Réunion in 1923 for a lady from the Seychelles called Rose Savy(who was descended from Le Butin’s family): she to flew to Paris with it to try to solve its mysteries. In 1934, the eminent French librarian Charles de La Roncière at the Bibliothèque National de France wrote a book about the affair called “Le Flibustier mystérieux, histoire d’un trésor caché“.

LeFlibustierMysterieux

Spurred on by the promise of gold-gold-gold, numerous treasure hunters have poured decades of their lives into this whole, ummm, ‘hopeful enterprise’. Savy herself believed that the answer was somehow connected with some strange carvings that she found on her property, depicting “chiens, serpents, tortues, chevaux“, as well as “une urne, des coeurs, une figure de jeune femme, une tête d’homme et un oeil monstrueusement ouvert“. [Do I need to translate those for you? I don’t think so!]

Reginald Cruise-Wilkins (1913-1977) “had done code-breaking work with the British forces and he found references to Andromeda in Levasseur’s enigma”, says John Cruise-Wilkins, who even today continues searching for the treasure that so obsessed his father from 1949 onwards. Just so you know, John C-W himself “believes [Levasseur] buried the bounty according to a complex riddle inspired by the 12 labors of Hercules”, ten of which he believes he has solved.

Well… another famous Levasseur story goes that as he was crossing a bridge over what was known as “la ravine à Malheur”, he said “Avec ce que j’ai caché ici, je pourrais acheter l’île” – ‘with what I’ve hidden here, I could buy the whole island‘. So perhaps it’s no wonder that people desperately want to believe that there’s pirate gold in (or perhaps under) them thar island hills. [Though as I say, I’m fairly unconvinced that this cryptogram has anything to do with La Buse. But perhaps that’s just me.]

Another famous La Buse treasure hunter was called Bibique (real name Joseph Tipveau, he wrote a book called “Sur la piste des Frères de la Côte”), but who shot himself in 31st March 1995, I’m sorry to say.

But with my crypto hat back firmly on, I have to say that the cipher system ascertained by de La Roncière could barely be more straightforward: a pigpen cipher, with letters of the alphabet arranged in a very simple manner, and with some of the shapes also used to represent digits (AEIOU=12345, LMNR=6789). Arranged in traditional pigpen style, the key looks like this…

Alphabet_de_la_buse-white

…while the cryptogram itself looks like this (click on it to see a larger image)…

la-buse-le-butin-cryptogram-small

And yet despite all that clarity, the cipher mystery remains, because if you use the above key to decipher the above ciphertext, what you get is an extremely confusing cleartext, to the point that perhaps “clearasmudtext” would frankly be a better word for it. Here’s one version from the Internet with spaces added in for marginal extra clarity:-

aprè jmez une paire de pijon tiresket
2 doeurs sqeseaj tête cheral funekort
filttinshientecu prenez une cullière
de mielle ef ovtre fous en faites une ongat
mettez sur ke patai de la pertotitousn
vpulezolvs prenez 2 let cassé sur le che
min il faut qoe ut toit a noitie couue
povr en pecger une femme dhrengt vous n ave
eua vous serer la dobaucfea et pour ve
ngraai et por epingle oueiuileturlor
eiljn our la ire piter un chien tupqun
lenen de la mer de bien tecjeet sur ru
nvovl en quilnise iudf kuue femm rq
i veut se faire dun hmetsedete s/u dre
dans duui ooun dormir un homm r
esscfvmm / pl faut n rendre udlq
u un diffur qecieefurtetlesl

The best single page presentation of it I’ve found comes from this French site that tries to colour-code the letters. Certainly, there are indeed errors in the text: but I don’t personally think that throwing your hands up and guessing at the correct plaintext values (which is what most treasure hunters seem to do) is methodologically sound.

Far less cryptographically naive would be to try to classify many of the errors as probable pigpen enciphering errors (where, for example, the difference between A and B is simply a dot). The fact that the ‘Z’ shape apparently occurs both with and without a dot implies (to me, at least) that a number of dots may well have slipped in (or out) during the writing. Moreover, there is no suggestion as to which of the ciphertext letters might be enciphering numbers (the two instances of “2” given are actual ‘2’ digits, not carefully interpreted ‘e’ ciphers), and aren’t pirates always pacing out distances from curious rocks etc?

For example, “doeurs” is a mere dot away from “coeurs”; while mysterious non-words such as “filttinshientecu” might actually start “fils…” rather than “filt…”. Might it be that (Voynich researchers will perhaps groan at this point, but…) some of these were emended by a later owner?

Or might it be that the image we’re looking at is actually a tidy copy of an earlier, far scrappier cryptogram, and what we’re most plagued by here is copying errors? I would say that the presence of some composite letters in the text is a reasonably strong indication that this is a copy of a cryptogram, rather than the original cryptogram itself.

Hence I suspect that properly decrypting this will be an exercise rich in cryptology, French patois, and codicological logic. Good luck, and let me know how you get on! 🙂

But after all this time, is there any Le Butin booty left? I read an online claim that several of Le Butin’s treasures have already been found:-
* one allegedly found in 1916 on Pemba Island (part of the Zanzibar Archipelago), allegedly marked with his initial “BN” (Bernardin Nageon)
* one allegedly in Belmont on Mauritius in a cave near the river La Chaux
* one possibly found on Rodrigues (is this the one mentioned in the letter?)
* one allegedly found at a cemetery on Mauritius in 2004, though I found no mention of it in the archives of the weekly Mauritian Sunday newspaper 5-Plus Dimanche.

However, I haven’t yet found any independent verification of any of these claims, so each story might separately be true, false, embellished, misheard or merely mangled in the telling. Please leave a comment below if you happen to stumble upon actual evidence for any of these!

45 thoughts on “La Buse’s / Le Butin’s Pirate Cipher (Part 2)…

  1. Tricia on April 20, 2013 at 12:18 pm said:

    You could write a good novelle using a backstory that the original cipher was pinched and replaced – by a clerk in the original archives, asked to retrieve the documents for said lady.

    He being thus invested with the appropriately piratical spirit, lives the rest of his life as Butin redivivus.

  2. bdid1dr on April 20, 2013 at 2:58 pm said:

    Nick,
    Do you know if le Butin ever cruised the South Pacific Islands? Otahiti? Papeete?

  3. bdid1dr on April 20, 2013 at 3:00 pm said:

    Moorea?

  4. bdid1dr: all the mentions of Le Butin seem to be related to the Indian Ocean. Remember that the big reason to be a French pirate back then was to get your hands on the treasure being brought back from India and the East Indies by (English) boats sailing around the Cape of Good Hope.

  5. very interresting…but uncomplete… contact me, i can give you very good information on this treasure and this story to complete ur website…

    waserdlo@yahoo.fr

    sorry 4 my english, i m french xD

  6. norm letcher on July 24, 2013 at 10:24 am said:

    Interesting tales of pirate proportions!!
    How come there are no copies of the original cypher? Did they hand over the originals to Mrs Savy??!!!!!
    Seems difficult if not altogether impossible to put trust in “copies”?

  7. norm: indeed! I suspect that disentangling true history from all the tall and embellished tales will take quite some time. There is talk of a new book coming out later this year, but it remains to be seen how much this will change things…

  8. , Rick A. Roberts on February 25, 2014 at 7:43 am said:

    I believe that the Lady from the Seychelles, Rose Savy is correct about the carvings being clues as to the treasures whereabouts.
    Using the code key mentioned in the article, I come up with the following; “AFTER I LIKE A PAIR OF TO HAVE BEEN CHEATED VERY RISKY TWO HEARTS THAT IS ITS HORSE HEAD A FORTUNE SON DOG UNITE AND A IT THE HEART OF THOUSAND (EF?) YOUR CRAZY IN MADE A GLOVE PUT ON (KE?) DOUGH OF THE SUPERSTITION”. The second part reads, “YOU ALL TAKE TWO SUCH BREAKAGE ON THE IN (MIN?) IT MUST THAT YOU ROOF HAS ENTIRELY NECKS FOR IN A WOMAN (DHRENGT?) YOU IN WILL EUCALYPTUS YOU WANDER THE BEEF OKAY AND POOR BLACK YOUNG THE AND FOR REPEAT A DOG QUINTUPLET”. The third part reads, “IN THE OF THE SEA OF WELL (TECJEET?) ON STREET INVOLVE IN WHO THEMSELVES (IUDF?) NECKS HOUSEWIFE THAT THE (I?) WANTS THEMSELVES DO AN HOW EASILY 1/4 MILE IN FORT DIU NORTH OF BOMBAY SLEEP A MAN (r?) THE COMPANY SEQUESTER WOMEN / HEAVY WEIGHT MUST NORTH MAKES (UDLQ?) YOU A DIFFERENT”.
    I notice that words such as; CHIEN(DOG), HOMME(MAN), HORSE(CHEVAUX), CHIEN NOIRE(BLACK DOG), TETE(HEAD), DES COEURS(THE HEARTS),JEUNE FEMME(YOUNG WOMAN), are in the translated messages. Many of these describe the carvings cited by Rose Savy.
    Pirates also had many superstitions that represented, “GOOD”, or “BAD” luck to them. A “BLACK DOG”, was “DEATH”. “Heart of a Dog”, was “Morals of a Canine”, A “Horse Head in the Attic”, was “Good Luck”.
    Also, people of this time period thought that losing a glove was “BAD LUCK”. They placed shoes in the attic or walls to ward off evil. A house wife never turned dough on its side, because this would allow witches to enter their house. Also, they would throw away their first piece of dough for good luck.
    I noticed some possible references to direction in the messages such as; “In the sea”, “In Diu(Fort North of Bombay), “North”, “1/4 Mile”. A “Fortune”, is also mentioned in the first message.
    The messages need to be further worked on and arranged in some logical order. Thanks,
    Rick A. Roberts

  9. nick cecere on November 19, 2014 at 6:53 am said:

    I stumbled across this and deciphered it using the chart telling you what a – z is regarding to those unusual letters . i however did not decipher the page that is posted above i however used the letter chart on another paper that was from this treasure mystery . its a bit shorter but regards to this one just like that one up there with the same funny character letters . it suprised me when i translated it i got (very clear i might add )
    To find my pirate treasure cache , go to published coordinates and walk southwest you will cross a small bridge in the southwest sentiners sand and find the cache there :tip : all you need is your hand to slide . seems to me like its buried (slide your hand in the sand , meaning dig ? i did not put the coordinates that it said . note i took a decent amount of time writing this as a serious help to help whoever is looking for it .regardless as if this whole thing is even real or not .. hope it helps some way

  10. nick cecere on November 19, 2014 at 7:20 am said:

    In addition to my previous comment i have to add that i see alot of people on here talking about an origional copy or the last copy of it being lost or a different one, if no one else has heard of it being translated like i said i did it in the same words like i deciphered it maybe i found the one and no one else has translated the specific one i did like it tells you to do but on different pages like the one up ontop of this page here . wish i could explain better what im trying to say here but im sure its understandable tho

  11. riley.b on December 8, 2014 at 2:05 am said:

    Hello nick.
    I would like to know the website you were on to decipher the text and get that paragraph if you don’t mind, because it’ll be a pain if i don’t see it for myself! 🙂

  12. riley.b on December 8, 2014 at 2:07 am said:

    Wait, so you didn’t decipher the huge page above? Hmm… Try deciphering the page above and see if you get the same result! 😀 Wortha shot right? I’d love to hear back from you!

  13. nick cecere on December 10, 2014 at 8:46 am said:

    Hi riley ,
    You know what i think it is , how you just told me to decipher the big page with the wierd letters above . everyone is doing that and is stuck still looking . i used the letters that you would use up there for it , on (another) paragraph pertaining to this whole matter of the treasure and since i dont see any other peoples responses like mine was and what mine came out to say. i dont even know what to do. Im very certain . did it with 1000% accuracy. It came out in all french and then i translated it over to english because i dont speak french at all . every single letter to word was clear as day , perfect instructions

  14. nick cecere on December 10, 2014 at 8:50 am said:

    Oh and about that page up there not that i dont think it matters if i do try and translate it because seems like everyone else did and got no where like ive been saying , i know it would take me like an hour to do it . the one i did was maybe 1/3 the size of that one up there . impatience +lazyness . maybe i will if i feel like it dont think itll matter tho

  15. Hi. I live in Mauritius. I can say with a great deal of certainty that La Buse, Robert Louis Stevenson, “Treasure Island “, and Jack Sparrow are all linked up.
    But alas La Buse’s treasure remains buried in the dead man’s chest.., or should I say in his brain ?

  16. Diane on March 27, 2015 at 3:07 am said:

    Nice one, Shu!

  17. bdid1dr on April 11, 2015 at 5:04 pm said:

    fershur, Shu!
    bdid1dr

  18. SirHubert on July 20, 2015 at 5:31 pm said:

    Nick: you know avast amount more about pirates than I do, but I’m struggling with all this.

    According to French Wikipedia (I know, but faut de mieux,) it seems that:

    i) Charles Bourel de la Ronciere wrote Le flibustier mystérieux, histoire d’un trésor caché in 1934. It was published by Editions du Masque, a firm of publishers specialising in detective fiction.

    ii) De la Ronciere reproduced the PigPen cryptogram of 17 lines in this book, and as far as I can see this is the first time anyone had seen it. In the 1934 edition, according to Wikipedia, he claimed that the document in question was preserved in the Bibliothèque Nationale, something which the BN later denied.

    iii) In 1962,Robert Charron reprinted the entire work in Trésors du monde, entérrés, emmurés, engloutis…. Wikipedia claims that the work was printed almost entirely unaltered (‘quasi identique’). The only difference mentioned, although of course there may be others, is that the provenance of the cipher document has changed. Instead of being in the BN, Charron’s edition claims that the cryptogram was shown to de la Ronciere by Mme Savy, although there seems to be not one shred of evidence for this whatsoever.

    So, actually, the only source for the ‘original’ cryptogram appears to be a book written by a French academic in the 1930s. And that book, not that I’ve read it yet, so do please correct me, seems very likely to be a historical novel rather than a serious, factual account. And if that’s true, you might as well look for treasure in the Desolation of Smaug.

  19. SirHubert on July 20, 2015 at 5:47 pm said:

    Apologies – French translation fail. The document is identical in Charron’s book, but of course Charron didn’t reprint de la Ronciere’s entire work. Sorry! *visage-palme*

  20. SirHubert: I have been trying to get hold of a copy for some time… but I have seen some pages and it seems stone cold sober.

  21. I have a copy of the book, and it just seems to me to be written for younger readers. It reports that the island’s notary gave two documents to the owner of the land on which the designs were discovered.

    I’ve taken an interest in the cryptogram over the years and offer my contribution on a web page at http://www.gjbath.com/Misc/LaBuse.htm. I suggest that the plaintext may have been systematically broken up and re-arranged, offering an example. I just feel it would need a French native speaker to take the approach further.

  22. Geoff: thanks for your comment – considering the overfootnoted high-academese tone of de la Ronciere’s other books and articles, the conception and execution of this book is somewhat jarringly populist… basically, it doesn’t really make sense. But he did write it, and so there it is. 😐

    Incidentally, I’ve just had a look at your site, and look forward to reading your three map books before very long. Can I order them directly from you rather than from Amazon?

  23. Nick: I agree, Ronciere’s book is certainly far from what I expected! Given that the original is in such a limited edition maybe it was just intended for children of his family and friends?

    I’m not sure that my sending you copies of my books would end up that much cheaper than through Amazon due to the cost of shipping! I’m in the UK. However, there may well be a way. Feel free to email me if you want to discuss this.

    Thanks, Geoff.

  24. nickpelling on June 3, 2016 at 11:52 pm said:

    Geoff: I’m in the UK as well, will email you over the weekend. 🙂

  25. Marco arellano on July 10, 2016 at 4:45 am said:

    Hola ,el pergamino dice que hay 8 tesoros a) isla reunión b) mayotte c) mauricio
    D) tortuga e) sainte-marie f) mahe g). madagascar i) Rodrigues
    Capitán de la real marina francesa ,corsario y pirata nace en isla tortuga ,su padre paul levasseur y era nieto francois levasseur y cada botín tiene su
    Inventario ,gran parte del botín de la virgen del cabo esta en isla reunión
    Pero la cruz esta en sainte -marie .vendo llave en 2 millones de dolares
    El de isla Rodrigues ya lo vendí
    Mi correo es neruda585@hotmail.com

  26. Tim Hoffmann on April 17, 2017 at 11:40 am said:

    It appears that this puzzle has to be looked at from 2 angles at least. I spent a bit of time on below but it is far from being waterproofed, but I think it manages to cast a new light on this stuck discussion:

    The first angle is the cipher above, which already has been translated numerous times with no great result except that Cruise-Wilkins believes this is a link to the 12 Labours of Hercules – excerpt from wikipedia “In 1947 Englishman Reginald Cruise-Wilkins, a neighbour of Mrs. Savy, studied the documents, but the cryptogram was much more difficult to solve than first believed. Deciphering it could be carried out only by starting from the two letters and the three cryptograms compiled in mysterious alphabet, a rebus, or at least in initiatory writing which could be put in relation to masonic symbolism. Cruise-Wilkins then discovered a connection with the Zodiac, the Clavicles of Solomon, and the Twelve Labours of Hercules.”
    Read more: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olivier_Levasseur

    Long story short Cruise Wilkins thinks that the zodiacs are the map and the story behind the 12 labours of Hercules tells us where to look on the celestial zodiac map to find the entrance to the treasure.

    Cruise-Wilkins interprets the 12 Labours of Hercules – Read more in here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Labours_of_Hercules – in a way that he thinks the last and hardest task on Hercules’ way to achieve immortality is to go down into the underworld (in our case the grotto or cave?) to fight and kidnap Cerberus (a dog-like beast with three heads which guards the entrance to Hades, the world of the dead). Cerberus in this context here stands for the hardest task to dick under ground and bring the treasure to the surface. This is at least what Cruise Wilkins is interpreting into this.

    However how to find the entrance to this place on Mahé Island?

    Looking back to the symbols mentioned earlier by Savy (“chiens, serpents, tortues, chevaux“, as well as “une urne, des coeurs, une figure de jeune femme, une tête d’homme et un oeil monstrueusement ouvert“) which was roughly translated into these by Rick A Roberts: CHIEN(DOG), HOMME(MAN), HORSE(CHEVAUX), CHIEN NOIRE(BLACK DOG), TETE(HEAD), DES COEURS(THE HEARTS),JEUNE FEMME(YOUNG WOMAN). He also adds: Pirates also had many superstitions that represented, “GOOD”, or “BAD” luck to them. A “BLACK DOG”, was “DEATH”. “Heart of a Dog”, was “Morals of a Canine”, A “Horse Head in the Attic”, was “Good Luck”.

    Linking this hint with the fact that Le Butin/Buse/Buzzard sometimes was a Pirate but mostly was a sailor, who was heavily dependent on the stars at night and his knowledge of it to navigate accordingly, one could consider that there is a deep link between those symbols and the zodiacs commonly found in celestial maps of that time and even today: the (black) dog bringing bad luck could portrait Cerberus, the horse (bringing luck) could be Pegasus, the head could be medusa’s head in Perseus hands(the man and later also referred to a knife engraving found by Wilkins) – both zodiacs forming one scene), the young woman could be andromeda or virgo (the virgin). I just don’t figured what the 2 hearts could stand for – but maybe Savy interpreted wrong (as she obviously didn’t seem to have a clue) and it actually was a vessel – maybe standing for amphora, the amazon queen?

    The links become more plausible once we start looking of a celestial map of that time:
    https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/7/75/Planisphæri_cœleste.jpg
    What you will notice is that all these zodiacs are located in the same area. I am not sure if they are all visible from Mahé Island but I am sure that the maps a French sailer would work with at that time were from Europe (accuracy/language/naming etc) – with its Northern Hemisphere View onto the Sky. If he was using the zodiacs as a guide to draw a map he would most likely refer to a map similar to this.

    More Astonishingly, once Cruise Wilkins arrived on the Island he made more findings of other symbols. Described in here: http://glynnburridge.com/blog/2012/08/the-buzzards-hoard-the-fabulous-undiscovered-pirate-treasure-of-seychelles/

    and here:
    https://books.google.com.au/books?id=yjVIBQAAQBAJ&pg=PT3186&lpg=PT3186&dq=andromeda+statue+seychelles&source=bl&ots=TDOgoaOut3&sig=B9ij1-SLapLOdy-2watX80sch64&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjB0Mrz_KrTAhXEw1QKHUrPC9IQ6AEIITAA#v=onepage&q=andromeda%20statue%20&f=false

    Amongst some of the symbols mentioned above, he also discovered carvings of the musca – or Fly (which is located next to Aries zodiac) and the key hole (also known as the carina nebula in the zodiac Argo (name of Jasons Ship). After further investigation he also “..managed to translate some lines of text, one referring to a ‘woman, waterlogged’ (reference to Andromeda), another to ‘Jason’(Jason’s Ship – Argo, another Zodiac). Suspecting that the quest was somehow connected to mythology and astronomy, Wilkins returned to Seychelles where he began excavating in earnest with a team of 23 men.”

    After this a tremendous discover of a compass near mount Simpson followed: (also mentioned in the articles before)
    Location here: https://www.google.com.au/maps/place/Mount+Simpson/@-4.6328555,55.4120652,2231m/data=!3m1!1e3!4m5!3m4!1s0x22e02939aa7aa589:0x742fd5bfe5e73b07!8m2!3d-4.6333333!4d55.4166667

    What he found were “..detailed compass bearings which had been engraved showing that this was the central point in relation to which La Buse’s maps and diagrams must have been charted. (Well, is it? In my view it could also simply be another zodiac – there is a compass zodiac which is located close to the triangle zodiac and is shown in other more detailed maps). In any way it seemed to be more important as the other engravings Wilkins found before:

    “..A frantic search ensued which proved fruitless until Wilkins realised that the unit of measurement for feet (30.48cm) that he was using, was not the correct one, but rather the old French measurement of 32.4 cm. New calculations led him to the beachfront, to a spot just feet from the high water mark. Wilkins’s excitement must have reached fever pitch when he found that the retaining wall he was obliged to build there to keep the water and sand at bay while he worked, lay precisely atop another one that someone had constructed earlier for exactly the same purpose! Then, when his downward-digging labourers reached ten feet they struck granite; to be precise, the granite statue of a waterlogged-woman. Andromeda!..” – By that point even I would have kept spending my whole money and life finding this treasure..

    The same articles continues “..Months of excavation around the statue unearthed layers of lime cement, (commonly used by pirates, and made by burning coral until it turns to lime), but also etchings of a scimitar blade next to a ram’s horn (which also is a zodiac in this area) and the chiselled form of a ship which Wilkins called ‘Argo’ – Jason’s ship (a zodiac mentioned before). Slowly but surely, a pattern was emerging in which every fresh clue was finding its rightful place.
    Rummaging further through the hillside opposite, Wilkins came across further clues; a stone representation of Pegasus, Perseus’ winged horse.

    By now Cruise Wilkins must have had a detailed mirror of the 17th century celestial map inscribed on the surfaces and coast line of Mahé Island. Finding the Cerberus Star (marking the entrance to Hades) on base of the other zodiac locations now should have been a rather easy task.

    We on the other hand from the outside only know the rough location of Mount Simpson, but we would need 2-3 more points to clearly identify the rough whereabouts of the other sites where Cruise Wilkins found the marks and the Statue of Andromeda.

    Cruise Wilkins himself actually managed to find the entrance, at least this is what he claims: “..Still, the procession of clues led Wilkins onwards, past a representation of a bull’s horns (and also another zodiac in that part of the Hemisphere) and an etching of what Wilkins took to be the Golden Apples of the Hespiredes (2 more references to the labours of Hercules) TO THE CARVING OF A DOG which, for Wilkins, indicated Hercules’ very last labour – the capture of Cerberus from the Underworld.”

    Maybe this is his capital mistake. As stated above, Savy found symbols of not only one dog but several dogs and also the translations above refer to a dog but also to another black dog. The dog which Cruise Wilkins found could be a zodiac which appears in labour 9 to side of the amazon queen amphora or as a zodiac by himself (Canis Minor – which his very close to the other zodiacs as well). Another way to interpret this is that one of the dog symbols actually is a lion (also a zodiac just next to Virgo (the virgin) – both located nearby and a also reference to one of the 12 Hercules Labours. To end all the speculation on the dog symbol, we would need to see the actual symbols Savy was referring to.

    In any case, what this last bit tells is that Cruise Wilkins can’t possibly be 100% sure that the dog symbol he found is Cerebrus. Which means that the dog from the underworld marking the entrance to the treasure remains undiscovered until today. Or he indeed found it as he said but went bankrupt to get the heavy machines in to find a way into the underground cave system.

    But in my view there is at least one good trace here: By marking all zodiacs found so far on a map of Mahé Island (with Andromeda and Pegasus certainly being two of the main sites unveiled), we should be able to narrow the area down where Cerebrus should be by comparing his location of the celestial map of that time with the other two zodiac locations.

    HELP: Anyone here who likes to give it a try and overlay the map of Mahé Island with the other site locations, as far as one can find them in the internet or by calling Wilkins? 🙂

    A Second path still is open to this all: What if Cerebrus does stand for the entrance to the cave but it doesn’t lead to the treasure. It could just lead to another hint.
    Thirdly, a whole different zodiac or just a single star could stand for the treasure. We need to have a look at other figure/symbol in the 12 labours of Hercules stand for the last treasure.

  27. Please visit https://sites.google.com/view/labuse to see what I believe is the most faithful, most plausible, most enlightening and most complete interpretation of the cryptogram of La Buse. The site is in both English and French.

  28. Peter on June 18, 2017 at 5:34 am said:

    @Olivier
    As it looks, he does not know the whole story. There are some questions for me.
    1. Why did he work as a harbor pilot?
    2. Why did not he settle into the new world?
    3. The gouvaneur of the island would have let him go if he had betrayed him where the Shat was. Why did not he save his neck?
    4. Have his own people excepted him and possibly betrayed him?

    I’m sure the Gouvaneur would have given him enough parchment and ink if he had just written where he was.
    But it probably would not have helped him much, because in my opinion the treasure was not there any more.
    Therefore, he could also throw the card into the crowd, “Whoever finds the treasure may keep it” (legend)
    He must have known that the treasure is no longer there.

  29. Nick, I spent several weeks researching the cryptogram of La Buse and working out a very plausible and faithful interpretation of it. I would be most grateful if you could spend a few minutes checking it out and giving an opinion – thanks in advance. https://sites.google.com/view/labuse

  30. Olivier: I’ve already gone through your website, and plan to blog about it soon. The short version: you’re trying to travel in the right direction, but I have very grave doubts about many of your suggested corrections. It’s an extremely difficult puzzle, that’s for sure. :-/

  31. Nick, I look forward to reading your comments on my site. Before you comment on it, you might want to take a look at my interpretation of the ‘fourth paragraph’ of the text, which I will make public on the anniversary of the hanging of La Buse, 17 July 2017, but which I can give you early access to if you write to me at levasseur.la.buse -at- gmail.com so that I have your email address. My interpretation includes an explanation as to what La Buse probably meant when he referred to ‘Turkish dogs’.

  32. Olivier: I’ll drop you an email shortly.

  33. Marco arellano on July 25, 2017 at 7:12 am said:

    No se abre como ustedes lo están haciéndolo ,el pergamino es un pequeño libro
    En el cual habla de los tesoros ocultos por la buse y sus familiares ,los hermanos de la costa ,una pequeña biografía ,la orden del temple,su abuelo era francois levasseur ,la croix de goa fue oculta en la isla apolline y luego cambiada a maurice
    Luego cambiada a nosy boraha o sainte-marie ,hay latitudes y longitudes ,como el perteneció a la orden del temple ,debía preservar todo lo sagrado ,su grado era prior o gran prior ,cada tesoro tiene su descripción de lo que hay ,vendo la llave
    En 2.000.000 millones de dolares ,me gustaría saber si hay descendientes del
    Pirata o la familiares de francois levasseur ,sale un tesoro de el donde hay diamantes y emeraudes ,etc ,se pueden contactar conmigo ,mi correo sale mas arriba
    Arte marco

  34. Marco: I’d be surprised if any of the things you assert as fact were true.

  35. Marco arellano on July 25, 2017 at 4:05 pm said:

    Hola nickpelling , hay una plantilla o capitulo donde se refiere a los tesoros oculto
    Por sus familiares y los suyos ocultos en diferentes islas , con 17 lineas no
    Sale isla bourbon ,en esta plantilla ,sale isla apolline y alexandrie sale alreves.
    Sabe el pergamino abierto en si es un tesoro ,mucha información .hay
    Un tesoro de francois levasseur ,paul levasseur ,olivier levasseur,2 levasseur
    Mas que no se sus nombres ,y con 22 lineas saldría otro levasseur ,que no se su nombre , en isla reunión hay un tesoro oculto por la buse y seria el mismo lugar donde oculto la cruz de goa ,por primera vez ,
    Arte marco

  36. john sanders on July 25, 2017 at 11:41 pm said:

    I’d hazard a guess and say that Olivier’s Turkish dogs could only refer to doner kebab and a logical reason comes readily to mind. We know that ‘doner’ equates to ‘turn around or go back’ (roughly). kebab means grilled over hot embers and that is quite literal. So there you have it; Its the warning probably represented by in the form of Cerebus to discourage further encroachment; and if disobeyed the transgressor will likely be roasted over the hot coals in hell. Of course its mostly all Greek to me but if the site to amateurs be open then why not use it….I’ll have three gyros with louisiana hot sauce; easy on the taboule svp.

  37. Marco arellano on July 26, 2017 at 2:15 am said:

    Lo siento ,pero el corrector cambia las palabras ,solo puedo decir que si lo abrí
    Y que toda la información esta en frances

  38. harlock on August 15, 2017 at 6:27 pm said:

    Hello Nick,
    As many I find fascinating these pirates / treasures / cipher tales, but I am always disappointed when I read treasure hunters’ books or papers. Evidences are always poor, they never cite any reliable sources, and their analysis are often far-fetched, even mystical.
    To the contrary, you keep an open but skeptical mind, do actual historical research, check anachronism and time consistency, and never, ever call a psychic for help. So I read with great pleasure your posts about La Buse / Butin mistery.
    Two comments on your analysis :
    1- You identify the “fall of Tamatave” in Nageon letter as the invasion of Île de France (Mauritius) in 1810. In fact, Tamatave is an harbour in the east coast of Madagascar, where french had a small trading post at that time. The post capitulated to the british the 18 february 1811. It was not a combat per se, as the weak french garrisson (may be a dozen men), capitulated to a single british corvette, the Eclipse (see Descamps, Henri (1846), Histoire et Géographie de Madagascar, p.49.)
    2- You said that “La Buse cryptogram” was retrieved from the Archives Nationales de la Réunion in 1923 for Rose Savy. This document never have been in Réunion archives. La Roncière is clear about that : It was a private paper owned by Savy, and she went with it in the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, hoping to find some informations to translate it. The fact that La Roncière, which was curator at the library, write a book about it leads some later author (including Charroux), to assert that the cryptogram is in Bibliothèque Nationale, which is also wrong.

    Keep up the good Job Nick
    Regards

  39. Harlock: thanks for your kind words, I hope I can continue to live up to them. 🙂

    1. The Fall of Tamatave: while it is entirely true that this was a disappointing and anticlimactic battle, it was France’s final naval engagement in the Indian Ocean, and as such was often referred totemically as marking the endpoint of France’s colonial aspirations. For without any ports for its ships to dock in, how could it now compete on the Indian Ocean stage?

    2. As for the source of Rose Savy’s papers, I’m really not so sure that we can rule out Réunion’s archives. Are we so sure that Savy’s documents were different to the ones that excited the Mauritian treasure hunting community so? And according (as I recall) to le Clézio’s father, they came from Réunion. The definitive history behind ‘The Mysterious Flibustier’ has yet to be written… :-/

  40. harlock on August 16, 2017 at 5:05 am said:

    “The definitive history behind ‘The Mysterious Flibustier’ has yet to be written” : I definitely agree.
    About Réunion archives, I’ve often been there, and there is no cryptogram in the current catalog. But you can find there the authentic report of La Buse trial though 🙂

  41. john sanders on August 16, 2017 at 11:32 pm said:

    I think you might find that one of our own lads Matty Flinders, may in his capacity as the senior British officer present, have taken the surrender of the Frogs at Tamatave in 1810, although being a colonial that proposition is probably a little optimistic. No matter, he had been languishing on Mauritius since 1804 mostly under conditions of fairly relaxed open arrest and one would therefore assume that he did a bit of pottering about the pretty wee island and environs. When he went home to blighty, although not a well man, knowing full well that his time was short, went straight to work putting all his papers in order, including his formal registration of Felix “AUSTRALIA”. Now this fellow was no bush bunny and in reallity he could rightly be recognised as one of the most talented cartographers the world has ever known, as evidenced by his mapping of Terra Austraiis which has not altered to any degree since he and his mate George Bass put it together in 1802 or thereabouts. I wonder has anyone thought about checking through his personal papers to see if he knew about the treasure; We might wonder whether he applied his map making skills during the six years spent in exile and if so, there might be a secondary uncoded treasure map. One of our other talented Aussies young Abel Tasman is thought to have done a bit if poking around the island’s interior hunting dodos for his shipmates prior to setting out for Tassie. Now that was 150 years before Mat’s time but as we know, it might well have some bearing or relevance to the original treasure hoarding claims. Mind you I’m not really fully bottle on the La Buse/Le Butin fantacy so my apologies to those dedicated theorists who are critical of my historical inaccuracies, date ranges etc.

  42. john sanders on August 17, 2017 at 3:20 am said:

    Nah, we can forget Tasman, although he did set sail on his tour of the Apple Isles (Van Diemen’s land) from Mauritius, he was about sixty odd years to early for the La Buse treasure and possibly a few years too late for the dodo open season. No doubt about it those lumbering Dutchies just never seemed to get their hands on any decent real estate eg. Cape Colony, Belize, Batavia and Mannhatten. I wonder about Bougainville the Froggie; could he have got his hands on the loot and then transplanted it on Samoa around 1730. That could explain why the little Jock R. L. Stephenson was so anxious to get there and also where he got the inspiration for Treasure Island. As an aside, does anyone recall his (im)mortal last words.

  43. Marco arellano on August 17, 2017 at 10:39 pm said:

    Ya se los dije el pergamino o criptograma es del pirata la buse.es en verdad real abierto es un pequeño libro ,donde narra los tesoros oculto en diferentes islas
    Por sus familiares y los de el .la croix de goa ,la oculto en la isla apolline ,o bien dicho como ustedes la conosen bourbon y luego fue traslada a maurice y su ultima ubicación esta en la isla nosy boraha ,en donde vivía la buse .y aunque no lo crean la buse ,llego a ser ,un templario al parecer un grand prior . usando las rutas templarías en sus incursiones,hay una plantilla donde habla de la orden del temple .no hablare de eso no creen que lo decifree ,menos creran esto.
    No poseo dinero para ir a buscar el tesoro ,pero vendo la llave para abrir el criptograma , olivier levasseur es nieto de francois levasseur ,gobernador de isla tortuga y del hay un tesoro ,diamants y emeraudes .etc.a los descendientes de
    Francois levasseur que se comuniquen conmigo o de olivier levasseur
    Todos e incluso usted es de no creer que el criptograma es del pirata la buse
    SE los digo es real y verdadero
    Si el gobierno de Francia no se intereso ,ni el gobierno de Portugal
    El criptograma en si es un verdadero tesoro
    Alguna universidad o un canal cultural que se interesen
    Atte marco

  44. Marco: in my opinion, only a tiny number of cryptograms can genuinely be said to be “cultural treasures”, and I would be surprised if the original (17 line) ‘La Buse’ cryptogram is on that short list. The second cryptogram may even have more value as an artful fake, which is a strange outcome. :-/

  45. Marco arellano on August 18, 2017 at 4:07 pm said:

    Nick: hola, no solo usted se sorprendería ,sino que el mundo con la información que hay en el pergamino , le diría que el criptograma fue codificado en un código
    Basado en código templario ,ya le dije que olivier levasseur perteneció al temple
    Y basado en la información que hay en el pergamino abierto ,puedo decirte que lo mas probable que fuera un gran prior ,o alguien superior ,habla de muchos secretum templi y segilum templi ,América era conocida por los templario mucho antes que colon ,según entiendo América del sur fue descubierta por los galeses
    Habla de el sainte graal ,era la copa sagrada usada por Jesús en la cena
    Hecha de madera de sándalo ,los restos de maera Magdalena ,menora, tora,
    El arca de la alianza ,y archivos secretos traídos desde Europa a América del sur
    Esa información sale ,sino cree que lo abrí entonces ,por eso digo que culturalmente es un tesoro ,y aparte de lo que aun no e descubierto
    En mi opinión las 17 lineas las tiro por si alguien podía descifrar ,pero las 22
    Lineas era para sus familiares ,pero algo le salio mal
    Atte marco

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