What if You Found Yourself Back in Time?
Approx. reading time 5 minutes
Did Two School Teachers Experience a Slip in Time?
Time slip experienced at Versailles Palace. Two early 20th-century two school teachers experienced just that. Interestingly, they published a best-selling book about their eerie encounter.
Decidedly, it was a sultry afternoon on August 10, 1901, when two British teachers on holiday visited Versailles, the historical and magnificent French Palace in France. The gardens were in full bloom and sight-seers in abundance.
Miss Anne Moberly, principal of St. Hugh’s, a women’s college of Oxford University, and Miss Eleanor Jourdain, who was soon to become vice-principal of the college, were spending a few days sightseeing in Paris.
Notably, as they began their stroll through the massive grounds, there was a strange feeling of oppression. Later, Miss Moberly described the feeling as being unaccountably depressed. Curiously, Miss Jourdain later admitted having the same heavy feeling.
Petit Trianon Is Refuge for Queen Marie Antoinette
Intrepidly, the two women decided to visit the Petit Trianon, a miniature private chateau built and frequented by Marie Antoinette, Queen of France. While on the tour of the grounds, both realized they’d lost their way.
“I began to feel as though I was walking in my sleep; the heavy dreaminess was oppressive,” Miss Jourdain later wrote. Miss Moberly felt similarly strange, but each kept her feelings to herself.
They were surprised to see very few people, which was strange for the summertime holidays.
They passed two men strangely attired standing near a wheelbarrow, whom they took to be gardeners, despite their long coats and tricorn hats. The men directed them straight ahead.
Soon, beneath a canopy of trees, what looked to be a small bandstand came into view. Nearby sat a man dressed in a cloak and large floppy hat. He seemed to have a sinister air about him and made the women feel nervous. The two women quickly moved on and were next given directions by another man whose appearance seemed odd.
A Woman Sketching
At last, through the trees, they caught sight of le Petit Trianon. Near the house, Miss Moberly noticed a woman sketching on the grass. She was wearing an enormous old-fashioned hat that seemed from a previous era. The woman kept staring at her, much to Miss Moberly’s annoyance.
At last, through the trees, they caught sight of le Petit Trianon. Close to the chateau, Miss Moberly noticed a woman sketching on the grass. Once the ladies were inside the palace, their melancholy lifted, and the arrival of a lively wedding party soon helped them forget the strange atmosphere they’d encountered outside. The woman kept staring right at her, much to Miss Moberly’s annoyance.
The Feeling of Melancholy Returns
A week later, Miss Moberly wrote a letter to her holiday companion, Miss Jourdain, about their visit to Versailles’s palace. While composing her letter, she again experienced the same strange heavy feeling. The feeling was so strong that Moberly felt compelled to ask Miss Jourdain if she thought Petit Trianon was haunted. Miss Jourdain reluctantly admitted that she believed that it was.
For the first time, the women openly discussed their experiences of that strange day. There were convinced that something quite extraordinary had happened to them. Miss Moberly brought up the instance of seeing the lady who was sketching alone in the garden and had stared at them in such a strange way. Jourdain maintained that she’d seen nothing but the garden. Intrigued by this discrepancy, they decided to investigate further.
Research into Marie Antoinette’s Time at Versailles
Upon researching Versailles history more, Miss Moberly discovered that on August 10, 1792 – the exact date the two had visited Versailles – Marie Antoinette and her husband, Louis XVI, were imprisoned in Paris awaiting trial by the revolutionaries. Miss Moberly believed it likely that the frightened queen’s thoughts may have harkened back to the last moments of happiness she knew. Of course, these were her carefree days spent at le Petit Trianon palace.
History tells us that Marie Antoinette loved to spend days away from the court backbiting gossip. At le Petit Trianon, she could dress as a peasant woman and wile away the hours doing what she loved to do without prying eyes. Perhaps the queen’s memory of the time was so vivid that, as Miss Moberly put it, “some impression of it became imprinted on the palace grounds.” Both wondered, “Could this be an explanation for their strange experience?”
Proof of their Claim?
Interestingly, archived plans of the palace revealed that in 1789, the lay-out and gardens were exactly as the two women had reported. The odd clothes that people were wearing were the height of fashion in 1789. Miss Moberly discovered a portrait of Marie Antoinette, which set her heart pounding. The Queen in the portrait was identical to the woman seen sketching.
When Moberly and Jourdain returned to Versailles two years later, to their incredulous eyes everything was different. The grounds and buildings were entirely changed.
Soon, the two women dedicated much of their free time to research Versailles. They focused specifically on what it looked like over 100 years prior.
In 1911, the two women bravely published their strange experiences in a book called “An Adventure.” As it turned out, the book caused a sensation and was hailed as the best-authenticated ghost story of its time. Clearly, deeply concerned about losing professional credibility, the book was published under pseudonyms.
After Miss Jourdain died in 1924, their true identities became known.
“Time slips” are unusual phenomena that suppose the current time’s interference with past times. More interesting is that persons experiencing a slip in time are unnoticed by the persons from the past.
If the two women are to be believed, they experienced what’s called a time anomaly. Time Anomalies, also known as temporal distortions or time slips, have been documented in recent history. No one knows precisely how or why these slips into the past occur. Interestingly, slips back into time, were researched by none other than Albert Einstein. What’s more interesting is that Einstein didn’t discount of possibility of time slips occurring.
What if you slipped back in time and thought you saw the ghost of Marie Antoinette? Let me know in the comments below!