The Two Children

A Study of the Two Jesus Children in Literature and Art

David Ovason

Out of print

Quick Look

  • An exploration into the facts and fiction surrounding the belief that there were two Jesus children

Explores the ancient belief that two children, both named Jesus, were born in Bethlehem.

234 x 156 mm
Lindisfarne Books
Religion & Spirituality
170 b/w illustrations
512 pages
Publication date:
28 Apr 2011


David Ovason explores the ancient belief that two children, both named Jesus, were born in Bethlehem to two sets of parents named Joseph and Mary.

Although the gospels of Matthew and Luke give some support to the tradition of 'two Jesus children', the idea was not adopted by the established church. It lingered on, however, particularly in the literature of esoteric sects such as Gnosticism, and later in fifteenth-century Italian art.

Ovason pays close attention to the ancient literature discovered at Qumran near the Dead Sea, and at Chenoboskion in Egypt. Hebrew, Aramaic, Coptic and Greek texts from those sites confirm the belief in the existence of two messiahs. Ovason also explores many fascinating and apocryphal texts that contain references to the two children, which were later expunged or glossed over by church apologists.

The author goes on to speculate about why the tradition then became so popular again in early fifteenth-century Italian art, and studies traces of the two children theme in the work of Ambrogio Borgognone, Defendente Ferrari, Raphael and Leonardo de Vinci.

This is fascinating reading for anyone interested in church history and theology, and esoteric traditions.


David Ovason teaches astrology and has studied the life and writings of Nostradamus for more than forty years. He is the author of numerous books, including The Secrets of Nostradamus (1997); The Zelator: A Modern Initiate Explores the Ancient Mysteries (1998); The Secret Architecture of Our Nation's Capital (1999); The Secret Symbols of the Dollar Bill (2004); The History of the Horoscope (2005); and Shakespeare's Secret Booke: Deciphering Magical and Rosicrucian Codes (2010).

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