“Believe only half of what you see and nothing that you hear.”

(Edgar Allan Poe)

Saint-Victor Abbey, Marseille, France. Mary Magdalene below the church in one of the crypts.

In Marseille, France there stands the abbey of Saint Victor and underneath is a number of crypts.  One of which shows Mary Magdalene kneeling before the cross in her usual posture.  What is unusal is the way Mary has her hands rested on either an object or a bump.  Others can see a baby itself with the head resting on Mary's left arm.

Some people will say this is Mary Magdalene resting on a rock as Mary is always seen in a cave or grotto as the norm.  But if it was a rock, then why is it sticking out at Marys mid-drift? Also looking underneath the so called rock, we see Mary is kneeling, which would indicate she has put the rock on her lap?  Slightly odd if not certanly uncomfortable and heavy for that matter!!


Moving away from the rock propsal there are two other possibilities.  One of them is the Mary Magdalene was pregnant which could explain the bump she has.  This always makes some people jump out of thier skin because they are led to believe that Mary did not have any children with Jesus.  In my opion there is eery possibility that they Mary did have children, that she was at some stage pregnant.

The third option is the possibility that Mary is holding a baby, indicating the child has already been born.  A close up picture shows a possible outline of a babys head resting on Marys left arm, the head sticking out from the outline of Mary's arm. The posture of Mary Magdalene indicates more than just a simple rock and is she gazing at the cross or towards her baby?

Lets have a look at some other pictures depicting Mary Magdalene in relation to this case study:

The picture of a holy card on the left shows Mary leaning on the rock rather than resting both hands towards above her lap. The Middle picture is taken from the St Mary Magdalene church in Rennes-Le-Chateau which shows Mary in a cave, resting her hands on her lap. Both these two are common poses of Mary Magdalene and no bump or rock is shown on either. The last picture of Mary we see another bump and clearly no rock in sight.


Mary Magdalene is portrayed in many ways but most have a common theme, for example, Mary in a cave with a skull and alabaster jar, sometimes with an open book and cross.  Then we have ones like in this case study which possibly shows Mary as someone else like being a mother rather than a repentant woman.

If someone showed this case study picture to me and I knew nothing of Mary Magdalene or her so called history or religious background then I would say instantly that she was a pregnant woman.  Its only when someone says its Mary Magdalene that they begin to discount the option of her being pregnant or holding a baby and try to reason with what history and religion have told them.

The rock argument for me is the outsider as I cant imagine Mary resting a rock on her lap as I can quite clearly see the top of her kness as she kneels down.  That leaves the other two options, Mary is pregnant or Mary is holding a baby.  Im going with the pregnant option but only because the outline of the baby's head could be more mistaken for Mary's arm, or robe or even her hair as if falls down around her.  The bump to me seems more clearer and stands out more with Mary's hands resting on top and her knees at the bottom not to mention the location of the bump.