So much for the last eaten theory: http://www.guardian.co.uk/worldlatest/story/0,1280,-4220011,00.html France Investigates Powder at Versailles Friday June 18, 2004 9:16 PM By PIERRE-ANTOINE SOUCHARD Associated Press Writer PARIS (AP) - Officials opened an investigation Friday into a white powder found last month at the famous chateau of Versailles - a substance that authorities say is potentially harmful but not fatal. The powder contained bacillus cereus, a substance related to anthrax but much less dangerous, the officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity. It could have been harmful if inhaled or rubbed against the skin, officials said. The powder was discovered May 23 spread on the floor of a room at the chateau, one of France's most popular tourist attractions. If someone had been harmed by the substance, they would have noticed immediately, the officials said. Nobody complained to personnel, they said. The product poses no lingering dangers to visitors at the chateau, the officials said. As a precaution, the room was cleaned by firefighters who wore high-tech gear designed for chemical attacks. Although the substance occurs in nature, its high concentration showed that it had been refined, the officials said. It was spread over a few square yards in the Gallery of Battles, a vast hall that houses paintings of France's famous war campaigns. Authorities have not ruled out any motives, including a prank. After initial analyses, the investigation was handed over to anti-terrorism investigators Friday. Authorities are expected to launch a campaign to encourage Versailles visitors to come forward if they saw anything suspicious at the chateau that day. The 17th century palace outside Paris and its sprawling 2,000-acre grounds - known for fountains, pathways and geometric gardens - draw about 9 million visitors a year.