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Sixth Edition, 1915
By Dr. John Thomas (first edition written 1861)



Chapter 16

Section II Subsection 2

"Like to Frogs"



This is the only place in the Apocalypse where "frogs" are introduced. They are produced here by way of illustrating the character of the spirits that, in the period of the sixth vial, would issue forth from the Dragon, Beast, and False Prophet, governments to all the rulers of the earth and habitable; and in a parallel series with the series of events by which the power of the Euphratean Ottoman empire is drying up. There can be no doubt that the wrath of the sixth vial is and has been for the past forty-eight years drying up this power. This is not to be gainsaid. It is an event, a sign-event, too notorious and palpable to be disputed. On the supposition that the reader is not one of "the hypocrites, who cannot discern the signs of the times" (Matt. 16:3); but is an intelligent observer and reader of current history - I would ask him, what power has been the most officious, suggestive, active, intriguing, and meddlesome, in all the political questions that have agitated the world, during the past twenty years; and amid the greatest professions of peace and progress, has, in that period, caused the most wars, and the greatest apprehensions of more? To this inquiry, but one answer can be given; and that is, the imperialized French democratic, termed "the Second Empire". This is a remarkable and leading feature of the times. French imperial policy is the moving and formative spirit of the situation; and when brought to bear upon Constantinople, Vienna, and Rome, political results are developed, or "unclean spirits go forth," in which the hand of French diplomacy is plainly to be seen - the spirits exhibit froggy characteristics.

Such is the great and undeniable political fact, which is as much the subject of the prophecy of the sixth vial, as the drying up of the Ottoman power, and the coming of Christ. It was shown to John, that in the sixth vial period there would be a power of no little influence, whose symbol was the Frog. If then it can be established that the Frogs are armorially representative of the French power, we shall have a harmony between historical and present facts and the prophecy as one of the great signs of the times, which no sane and candid observer will venture to neglect or dispute. The testimony to establish this is as follows:

1. Montfaucon, in his Monumens de la Monarchie Francaise, p. 4, plate 6, gives a Frog as one of the monuments of the French king, Child-eric; thus writing respecting it, "3. Another medal representing a frog, which was also an Egyptian symbol". This was found A.D. 1623, at St. Brice, near Tournay, with other things belonging to Childeric. Re reigned A.D. 456. That is, before the Franks acknowledged the Roman Bishop.

2. In the "Monde Primitif compare avec le Monde Moderne," par M. Court de Gebelin, Paris, 1781, the author thus writes, p.181, "Nous venons de voir que les Armoiries de la Guyenne sont un leopard, celles de Celts (surtout les Belgiques) etoient un lion, et celles des Francs un crapaud. le crapaud designe les marais dont sortirent les Francs". And again, on p.195, "La Cosmographie de Munster (50.2) nous a transmit un fait tres remarquable dans ce genre. Marcomir, Roi des Francs, ayant penetre de la Westphalie dans le Tongre, vit en songe une figure a trois tetes, 1' une de lion, l'autre d'aigle, Ia troisieme de crapaud. Ii con-sulta la dessus, ajoute on, un celebre druide de la contree, appele Al Runus; et celuici l'assura que cette figure designoit les trois puissances qui aurojent regne successivement sur les Gauls; les Celts dont le sym-bole etoit le lion, les Romains designes par l'aigle, et les Francs par le crapaud, a cause de leur marais".( t)

3. In the sixth century, 46 of the prophecies of Nostra Damus (p.251) translated by Garencieres of London, 1672, occur the following lines:

~njuste sera un exile envoye Par pestilence aux confins de non seigle; Response au rouge le fera desvoye, Roi retirant a la Rane et a l'aigle.


On which, Garencieres observes: "by the eagle he meaneth the emperor; and by the frog, the king of France; for, before he took the fleur de luce, the French bore three frogs".

4. In Pynson's edition of Fabyan's Chronicle, at the beginning of the account of Pharamond - the first king of the Franks who reigned at Treves about A.D. 420- there is a shield of arms bearing three frogs, (p.37, Ellis' edit.); with the words beneath,

The banner underneath, having upon it the three frogs, is from ancient tapestry in the cathedral of Rheims, representing battle scenes of Clovis, who is said to have been baptized there after his conversion to Romanism.


The next engraving is from the Franciscan church at Innsbruck; where is a row of tall bronze figures, twenty-three in number, representing principally the most distinguished personages of the House of Austria; the armor and costumes being those chiefly of the 16th century, and the workmanship excellent. Among them is Clovis, king of France, and on his shield three fleur de lis and three frogs, with the words under-neath, "CIodouus der i Christenlich kunig von Frankreich;" that is, Clovis the first Christian king of France.

1. Uptonus de Militari Officio, p.155, states that three frogs were the old arms of France, without specifying what race of kings.

2. Professor Schott supposes the three frogs to have been distinctly the original arms of the Bourbons; bourbe signifying mud. This may have been the case. When their family became the dynasty of France, they probably assumed the frogs as their arms, being kings of the Franks, whose symbol it had been so long. The Bourbons arose out of the mud which is natural to frogs, and by the revolution of 1848 are deep in the mud again!

3. Typoticus, p.75, gives as the device on a coin of Louis VI, the last French king before Hugh Capet, the first of the Bourbons, a frog with the inscription Mihi terra lacusque, land and water are mine, i.e. I am amphibious.

4. In the Encyclop~dia Metropolitana, on Heraldry, it is stated that "Paulus Emilius blazons the arms of France, argent three diadems gules;" others say, they bear 'three toads,' sable in a field vert-ap. Gwil-lim, c. 1.  which, if ever they did, it must have been before the existence of the present rules".


Such is the testimony I have to offer in the case before us. The con-viction produced on my mind is, that the Frogs in the prophecy are the symbol of the French democratic power. It will be seen from the armorial shield of Clovis, that the frogs and the lilies were both used as Symbols. They are both indigenous to wet, or marshy, lands, and therefore very fit emblems of the French, who came originally from the marshes of Westphalia. But on the shield of Pharamond, so far back as A.D. 420, the frogs without the lilies appear in the armorial bearings of the Franks; and in the medal of Childeric I. there is no lily, but the frog only. It would therefore seem from this, that the lilies were not the original arms, but superadded many years after; and at length adopted by the Bourbons as the symbol of their race in its dominion over the frogs. These, then, represent the nation, and the lilies, or fleur de lis, the ruling dynasty. Now, if the apostle had said, "I saw three unclean spirits 'like lilies' come out of the Mouths," he would have intimated by such a similitude that the French Bourbons were the cause of the "unclean spirits" issuing forth from the Sultan, the Emperor, and the Roman Prophet. But he does not say this; he says they were like frogs. The truth, then, is obvious. In A.D. 96, when John was an exile in Patmos, the Franks were savages in an untamed country, living by hunting and fishing like American Indians. But the Holy Spirit revealed to him that this people would play a conspicuous part in the affairs of nations; and, foreseeing by what symbol they would represent themselves, He symbolized their nation by it, and styled them "Frogs". He informed him, that under the sixth vial their influence would be remarkably apparent. That the Frog-nation would have much to do with the Dragon, Beast, and False Prophet; in fact, that so intimate and direct would their dealings be with them, that its effect would be perceived in the warlike tendency and influence of the measures proceeding from the Sultan, the Emperor, and the Pope; who, being so completely entangled in the complications created by the policy of the Frog-power, would in their endeavors to extricate themselves, involve the whole habitable in war, which would end in the destruction of the Two-horned Beast, and the False Prophet and in the subjugation of the surviving horns to the new Imperial dominion of the kings of the Sun's risings, whose way is prepared by the drying up of the Great River Euphrates.




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