Michael Baigent (1948-2013) was born in New Zealand in 1948, but had lived in Britain since 1976. He was a religious historian and in that capacity wrote The Jesus Papers and co-authored with Richard Leigh (1943-2007) The Dead Sea Scrolls Deception, both of which were heavily criticised,
Baigent was a prominent Freemason and served as an editor of the masonic magazine Freemasonry Today and co-authored, also with Leigh, The Temple and the Lodge , which dealt with the history Freemasonry.
Baigent’s best known collaboration was with Leigh and Henry Lincoln, which produced The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail, which they claimed, unsuccessfully, in court was the inspiration for Dan Brown’s The DaVinci Code. Baigent and Leigh, who brought the case were effectively bankrupted by the legal costs involved.
In 1998 he wrote Ancient Traces about the mysteries of early history in which he reviews many of the Atlantis theories and concludes that an Atlantic solution is the most probable. Commenting on the credibility of Plato’s story he says:
“To express his ideas he usually wrote his books in the form of discussions or arguments between friends and associates. While he pressed many historical stories and legends into service in this way, he has never been found to have invented them”.