Die Glocke (German: [diː ˈɡlɔkə], "The Bell") was a purported top secret Nazi scientific technological device, secret weapon, or Wunderwaffe. Described by Polish journalist and author Igor Witkowski in Prawda o Wunderwaffe (2000), it was later popularized by military journalist and author Nick Cook as well as by writers such as Joseph P. Farrell and others who associate it with Nazi occultism and antigravity or free energy research.
Die Glocke has become a popular subject of speculation and a following similar to science fiction fandom exists around it and other alleged Nazi "miracle weapons" or Wunderwaffen. Mainstream reviewers such as former aerospace scientist David Myhra express skepticism that such a device existed.
Discussion of Die Glocke originated in the works of Igor Witkowski. His 2000 Polish language book Prawda o Wunderwaffe (The Truth About The Wonder Weapon, reprinted in German as Die Wahrheit über die Wunderwaffe), refers to it as "The Nazi-Bell". Witkowski wrote that he first discovered the existence of Die Glocke by reading transcripts from an interrogation of former Nazi SS Officer Jakob Sporrenberg. According to Witkowski, he was shown the allegedly classified transcripts in August 1997 by an unnamed Polish intelligence contact who said he had access to Polish government documents regarding Nazi secret weapons. Witkowski maintains that he was only allowed to transcribe the documents and was not allowed to make any copies. Although no evidence of the veracity of Witkowski’s statements has been produced, they reached a wider audience when they were retold by British author Nick Cook, who added his own views to Witkowski’s statements in The Hunt for Zero Point. Author Jason Colavito wrote that Witkowski's claims were "recycled" from 1960s rumors of Nazi occult science first published in Morning of the Magicians, and describes Die Glocke as "a device few outside of fringe culture think actually existed. In short, it looks to be a hoax, or at least a wild exaggeration."
Allegedly an experiment carried out by Third Reich scientists working for the SS in a German facility known as Der Riese ("The Giant") near the Wenceslaus mine and close to the Czech border, Die Glocke is described as being a device "made out of a hard, heavy metal" approximately 2.7 metres (9 ft) wide and 3.7 to 4.6 metres (12 to 15 ft) high, having a shape similar to that of a large bell. According to an interview of Witkowski by Cook, this device ostensibly contained two counter-rotating cylinders which would be "filled with a mercury-like substance, violet in color". This metallic liquid was code-named "Xerum 525" and was "stored in a tall thin thermos flask a meter high encased in lead". Additional substances said to be employed in the experiments, referred to as Leichtmetall (light metal), "included thorium and beryllium peroxides". Witkowski describes Die Glocke, when activated, as having an effect zone extending out 150 to 200 metres (490 to 660 ft). Within the zone, crystals would form in animal tissue, blood would gel and separate while plants would decompose into a grease-like substance. Witkowski also said that five of the seven original scientists working on the project died in the course of the tests. Based upon certain external indications, Witkowski states that the ruins of a concrete framework, aesthetically dubbed "The Henge", in the vicinity of the Wenceslas mine ( ), some 3.1 kilometres (1.9 mi) southeast of the main Complex Sokolec underground works of Project Riese, may have once served as a test rig for an experiment in "anti-gravity propulsion" generated with Die Glocke. However, the derelict structure itself has also been interpreted to resemble the remains of a conventional industrial cooling tower.
Witkowski’s statements along with Cook’s views prompted further conjecture about the device from various American authors, including Joseph P. Farrell, Jim Marrs, and Henry Stevens. In his book Hitler's Suppressed and Still-Secret Weapons, Science and Technology (2007), Stevens concludes that the violet mercury-like substance described by Witkowski could only be red mercury, a purported substance the existence of which has not been proven, because normal mercury "has no fluid compounds according to conventional wisdom". Stevens presents a story attributed to German scientist Otto Cerny as told to then 13-year-old Greg Rowe around 1961 which alleged that a concave mirror on top of a device which seemed similar in description to Die Glocke provided the ability to see "images from the past" during its operation.
- Kiger, Patrick J. "Nazi Secret Weapons". National Geographic. Archived from the original on 26 February 2010. Retrieved December 1, 2016.
- Cook 2001, p. 267
- Farrell 2006
- Kleiner, Kurt (5 January 2011). ""The Hunt for Zero Point" by Nick Cook". Salon.com. Archived from the original on 15 January 2011. Retrieved 5 January 2011.
- Colavito, Jason. "Review of In Search of Aliens S01E02 "Nazi Time Travelers"". JasonColavito.com. Jason Colavito. Retrieved 1 December 2016.
- Stevens 2007, p. 249
- Cook 2001, p. 192
- Cook 2001, p. 193
- Cook 2005, UFO: The Secret Evidence telecast
- Gerold Schelm 2005, Henge at Ludwikowice, Poland – test rig for the NAZI-Bell?
- Stevens 2007, p. 250
- Stevens 2007, pp. 251–252, 255
- Cook, Nick (2001). The Hunt for Zero Point: Inside the Classified World of Antigravity Technology. Century. ISBN 978-0-09-941498-8.
- Cook, Nick (Writer) (2005). UFO's: The Secret Evidence. Oxford Film & Television Production/Channel 4.
- Cook, Nick (Writer/Narrator) (2006). An Alien History of Planet Earth. History Channel.
- Kleiner, Kurt (August 5, 2002). "The Hunt for Zero Point by Nick Cook". Salon. Archived from the original on January 15, 2011.
- Gerold Schelm (November 2005). "The Henge at Ludwikowice, Poland – test rig for the NAZI-Bell?" (PDF). Retrieved 6 April 2014.
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In chronological order:
- Witkowski, Igor (2002). Prawda o Wunderwaffe (in Polish).
- Witkowski, Igor (2003). The Truth about the Wunderwaffe. Bruce Wenham (trans). Books International Militaria. ISBN 83-88259-16-4.
- Stevens, Henry (2003). Hitler's Flying Saucers: A Guide to German Flying Discs of the Second World War. Books International Militaria.
- Marrs, Jim (2008). The Rise of the Fourth Reich. William Morrow & Company. ISBN 0-06-124558-5.
- Cook, Nick (Narrator and Writer) (1999). Billion Dollar Secret. Discovery Channel.
- Cook, Nick (Researcher) (February 2005). "Area 51". Unsolved History. Episode 47. Discovery Channel.
- Nazi UFO Conspiracy. Discovery Channel. November 24, 2008.
- 12 Monkeys Season 4 Episode 6 Review: Die Glocke, Michael Ahr, Den of Geek, June 22, 2018