I've been hesitant to post the early results of my plate analysis. Everything in this post I've known since mid-April of 2004.
Having spent months reading articles like this, I really don't want to be the guy with a unique relic related to the DaVinci Code. Please, no torches and pitchforks at my front door.
I'm against royalty, world government, and Satan. I believe in representative democracy, limited government, and worship God. I'm somewhere between a Deist and a Unitarian. I like dogs and gardening. Ruling the world and forcing everyone to worship what I believe would really cut into my nap time.
My father hung the plate near our dining room table my entire life. Only after I read DaVinci Code in April, 2004 did I notice anything other than a monk 'flirting' with a woman. Who knew roses and what looks like a golf trophy could be so significant? I didn't.
As I noted months ago, my father's plate was made by Montereau & Creil (Barluet & Company) between 1876-1884. That's what I know with certainty from the markings ("B&C") on the back. The back is science, while the front is religious symbolism.
Keep in mind this evidence goes to what some French people believed at the end of the Ninteenth Century. Other than that, it doesn't prove anything.
1. The plate being 13 inches wide, and having the number 33 on the back, directly links it to the Freemasons. Thirteen, of course, goes all the way back to Jacques de Molay (Knights Templar Grand Master) being burned at the stake on Friday October 13th, 1307. That's where the number thirteen superstiton comes from.
The thirty-third degree is the highest degree of Freemasonry. thirteen and thirty three are considered by experts to be key numbers in the world of Freemasonry.
This would be a mere coincidence were it not for all the other clues.
2. The rose line is always associated with the Holy Grail mystery.
"The Rose: Rosicrucianism, the Rosy Cross, and rose-line symbolism is all over the place in this mystery."
Notice the rose line on the right side of the plate? It leads up to a vessel which looks like many artistic depictions of the Holy Grail.
In summary, we have a 13" plate, marked with the number 33, including a rose line, leading to a vessel which looks just like the Holy Grail in many works of art.
That's it for Part I.
For more information, click "Resources for Researchers".
Dan Brown's list of books is useful if none of this makes any sense. It didn't make any sense to me less than a year ago. Join the club.