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Observations placeholder

Prince Emile de Sayn de Wittgenstein - Reincarnation, past lives and possession



Type of Spiritual Experience


Delanne writes:

In this case, it seems certain that it is indeed the spirit of the cousin of the Prince de Wittgenstein that has manifested itself, since the mediumnical writing is identical to that of the living person.  Since no prior connection has been established between the medium and this lady, there is no need to use clairvoyance.

If this murder story is false, we should assume that this pious and well-behaved lady took pleasure in lying, and this without any interest, and, moreover, during her spiritual release, to support the theory of successive lives in which she consciously refused to believe.

Personally, I prefer to accept his story as true, because nothing allows me to doubt its reality.

A description of the experience

As quoted by Gabriel Delanne - Materials for use in the Study of Reincarnation

The Prince de Sayn Wittgenstein is well known to the spiritualists. In his book Animism and Spiritism, Aksakoff cites his testimony about the will of Baron Korf, whose spirit indicated to the Prince, in Paris, the place where the will had been hidden in Russia.  He was a sincere and loyal man whose testimony we can accept with confidence. Prince Emile de Sayn Wittgenstein tells us:

A very distinguished French medium-writer, Mrs. C..., had come in the summer of 1869 to spend a few weeks in my house in Nieder Walley.

Having done séances, we asked if it was possible or not to invoke the spirit of a living person while asleep. Shortly afterwards, a small oval medal in tarnished bronze, with a little adherent dry earth, bearing on one side the effigy of Christ and on the other that of the Virgin Mary and appearing by its execution to date back to the 16th century, fell from the ceiling on the table where Mrs C was sitting. We were informed that this medal had been buried with a person who had died of violent death, who had constantly worn it. This person was now embodied in Germany. We brought this medal to establish a fluid relationship between her and us, to relieve her of a kind of painful obsession.

We knew that the name began with an A and that we should call in memory of the City of Dreux. In the days that followed, we held a series of séances with Mrs. C.... whom I had magnetized. The medium holding a pencil wrote: "I am here".

D. - How come you're already asleep. (It was only 10 o'clock.)

R. - I'm in bed with a fever.

D. - Can you tell us your current name.

R. - Not yet. When I wore the medal, I lived in France under the reign of Louis XIV; I was killed by a man who kidnapped a resident of the monastery where I was a nun.

D. - Why did he kill you?

R. - I had just returned from Dreux, where I had been summoned by our abbess; I caught them and as I threatened to scream, the man hit me on the head with the knob of his sword, in order to make me dizzy, but the punch was so severe that he killed me.

D.- How could he have entered the monastery?

R.- With the connivance of the doorman, who was pretending to be asleep when his keys were removed. My attacker saw me dead and was frightened, and with the help of his servant they buried me in the first place they found convenient. This site is now under a house, but my remains are still buried in a garden.

D. - Where is it in?

R. - Le Pré aux Clercs.

D. - Was the man who killed you noble?

R. - Yes, he belonged to the Lesdiguières family.

D. - Who was the abducted resident?

R. - A novice from a noble family. He had put her in a coach that took her away immediately, because they were supposed to meet later. She never knew anything about my murder, having died a few years later, in a foreign country where both had taken refuge.

D. - What did your mind do after leaving your body?

R. - I went directly to our abbess, who was terribly frightened; she saw me and thought she was in the grip of a nightmare. Then I wandered around the chapel, thinking I was still alive. I only realized my state of mind when those who put me in the ground prayed for me. A great turmoil overwhelmed me and I felt unable to forgive them.

Even now, I have had great difficulty responding to your call, because I feel compelled to return to Dreux and haunt the church in my former form as I did before my current incarnation. It is a terrible suggestion that hinders my progress by preventing me from coming into contact with the good spirits that comfort us at night while I sleep.

Emile, you must help me to free myself. (After a few words of encouragement and the promise to help her, we continued.)

D. - On which street in Paris was your convent located?

R. - Rue de l'Abbaye.

D. - Under the patronage of which saint?

R. - Saint Bruno: the congregation of the ladies of the Passion.

D. - Does the monastery still exist?

R. - Damaged and destroyed by the Revolution.

D. - Is there anything left of it?

R. - A wall.

(After this, I wrote to a friend who informed me that after a long search, he had discovered, imbedded between houses, an old wall that must have once belonged to the convent.)

D. - Do you have in the current incarnation the memory of the one who preceded it.

R. - I have a kind of apprehension as if I had to die a violent death, a head injury; it sometimes makes me nervous. Now I see that it is a reflection of the past. Sometimes I have dreams of ghosts in monastic dresses and murderers rushing at them.

D. - Do you live far from here?

R. - In Germany.

D. - Is your name German?

R. - Yes, I feel sorry for these questions.

D. - Do I know you?

R. - Certainly, yes.

D. - Where do you live?

The medium begins to trace with difficulty F.... Fu.... I start under a sudden inspiration, Fulda. At the same time, Mrs. C... screamed and had a violent jolt, almost knocking over her chair as if she had felt an electric shock. I immediately understood that the controlling spirit was that of my cousin Amélie de Y., who lived in Fulda where she held a high position in a Protestant chapter of the nobility.

D. - (After a long interval.) Why did you give such a strong jolt to the medium?

R. - I didn't want you to know again.

D. - Has your body woken up?

R. - No, but I was surprised.

While Mrs. C... and I were discussing the reality of my cousin's intervention, the psychic's hand unconsciously wrote a name that put an end to all doubts, because it referred to a secret known only to the Countess and myself.

D. - How can I be sure of your identity and that you are not a joker who is laughing at us?

R. - When you meet me soon, ask me if I have had any dreams in which I feel I have been killed. I would say no, but sometimes I dream of a priest murdered by debauched people. You can also show me the medal. I'll think I've already seen it.

With this evocation the dialogue sessions with Amélie ended. A few months later, I met my cousin at my sister's country house. Amelie, as usual, began to joke about my spiritual belief, saying that everything was just an illusion and disappointment. I responded cheerfully to these attacks without getting angry, but defending my theories on dreams, reminiscences, messages from the spirits.

I jokingly asked her if she had ever dreamed of being murdered. She replied no. After a moment, she added: "However, I have an unpleasant dream, a kind of nightmare that chases me, makes me nervous, uncomfortable for the next day." Insisting on the detail, she finally told me that she had dreamed of a Catholic priest in a priestly robe fleeing a church that was burning and being chased by armed men who wanted to kill him.

After changing the conversation I took the medal, suggesting that I had bought it from an antique dealer. After handling it for a few moments, she examined it so carefully and at such length that I asked her: what is wrong with you? She replied that she could not explain why this object seemed so familiar to her. She seemed to have possessed it or at least seen it before, but could not remember under what circumstances. Then I told her the whole story of her evocation by the medium; she asked me to see the writing obtained.

This writing did not seem to me to resemble hers, because she always wrote to me in German with a pen, while the communications were written in pencil in French letters.

When she saw it, she cried out that positively it was her writing, when she used a pencil instead of a pen. Immediately I asked her to write a few words in pencil that I dictated to her and, indeed, the writing was similar to that of the original.

Now she was afraid when she thought that her soul could haunt an old church while she slept. I prayed to her, in order to paralyze this attraction, to call upon her guardian angel and to say aloud before going to bed: "I will not go".

Having done so, I have since known from my guides that she has been rid of this obsession.

I would be grateful, adds Prince Wittgenstein, to anyone who could explain this fact to me through a theory other than that of reincarnation.

Signed: Prince Emile de Sayn de Wittgenstein.

The source of the experience

Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg, Êmile , Prince

Concepts, symbols and science items


Science Items

Activities and commonsteps



Dreaming and lucid dreaming


Automatic writing