London - The atmosphere in Rome is said to be 'psychotic' as the discovery of a demonic throne on Mars this week has sent shockwaves through the Vatican.
Experts say the Martian carving appears to be a much bigger copy of the Fauteuil du Diable - a rocky seat of the devil Asmodeus - located high in the French Pyrenees above Rennes Les Bains.
During the Avignon Papacy period of 1309 to 1378 the Fauteuil was used in Papal coronations before the 900-yard trek was declared 'a bit offside'.
But Asmodeus' statue still adorns the entrance of a tribute chapel in nearby Rennes Le Chateau, dedicated to Mary Magdalene, wife of John the Baptist and scourge of Vatican realpolitik since the year dot.
Another, 15th century version carved from olivewood by Leonardo Da Vinci, has been used to consecrate Popes for nearly 600 years.
This week's discovery of the 100ft Martian structure was unearthed by astronomy geeks from a Tooting, South London bedsit.
Armed only with an improvised 5-inch telescope and the latest Google Dearth the amateur stargazers reckon the rocky chair is perfectly aligned with its demonic French counterpart.
Initial decoding of imagery had suggested the Martian throne was nothing more than a classic trompe l'oeil - much like the 1976 Viking pictures of Cydonia's 'pyramids' and 'face in the desert'.
"Then we got an unexpected breakthrough," Dave Geek, resident astronomer general for the Borough of Tooting told reporters at lunchtime.
"A gathering of French UFO nutz in nearby Bugarach last year found some strange subterranean 'alien cavities' - thought to contain a spaceship silo.
"Using simple sacred geometry techniques we managed to get a perfect alignment with a curious pentacle-shaped Mars spot which, when magnified 10,000 times, turned out to be the Mars Devil's Armchair!"
The Bugarach angle was played down last year by the French military despite YouBoob! footage of the country's former President Mitterand being heliported to the top of the Pic de Bugarach mountain during his tenure of orifice.
Previous Indiana Jones-like excavations of the area by the Nazis and later Mossad failed to find proof that the Fauteuil du Diable may have once been used as a Star Trek-like transportation device to its much larger Mars counterpart.
"One day the Kings of Rome may be consecrated again on the original Martian throne," Geek added.
"Ya never know!"