A 240-year-old secret message has been found in a wooden statue of Jesus Christ, located in the secret compartment of the statue’s derriere.
The statue, called Cristo del Miserere, was removed from the church of Santa Águeda in Sotillo de la Ribera, Spain, for restoration. The conservators at the company found a note by dislodging a removable piece of the statue that covered its butt, Science Alert reports.
The note seemed to be intentionally hidden away for hundreds of years, in what seemed to be an act to form an early rendition of a time capsule.
“Although it is usual for many sculptures to be hollow, it is not so much to find handwritten documents inside,” historian Efrén Arroyo, a member of the Holy Week Brotherhood of Sotillo de la Ribera, said.
While the message was an unexpected find, it was what was written on the hidden document that was the most surprising.
Joaquín Mínguez, a chaplain of the Cathedral of the Burgo de Osma, wrote the message on both sides of two pieces papers in 1777, and detailed what life was like in his quaint community.
Minquez described popular games, the economic situation, political and religious matters, famous people, and the diseases that were plaguing society at the time.
“The Court is in Madrid, there is a Mail and Gazette for the news, there is an Inquisition, for which no errors are experienced against the Church of God,” Minquez reportedly wrote on the document.
Following this revelation, the original document has been sent to the archives of the Archbishopric of Burgos for safekeeping, but a copy of the transcript was produced, and put back inside the rear end of the statue, just like Mínguez intended.