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Posted: 1/3/2003 2:14:41 PM EDT
I went to Barnes and Noble today, and they only had two. One was simply titled (IIRC) "The Templars" and was written by some stinking french guy. I flipped through it and realized right away it was one of those books that had information in it, but was a pain in the ass to read (boring author).

Can somebody here recommend a good one? One that is fairly entertaining to read?

And I know that they were christian knights, but I'm not looking for a book with a purely religious slant to it. Mainly for a historical account of them. Though I'm also curious about the more juicy stuff as well, such as their ties with the arc of the covenant, and various conspiracy type stuff as well.
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 2:18:22 PM EDT
Well, might as well throw this out there -

Behold a Pale Horse - William Cooper

oh, and IBTL

Link Posted: 1/3/2003 2:49:44 PM EDT
[i][b]Foucault's Pendulum[/i][/b] by Umberto Eco!

It's a very, very good book. Better even then his best-seller [i][b]The Name of the Rose[/b][/i].

But it delves into the mysteries surrounding the disappearance of the Knights Templar from Paris shortly before the members of the Order were arrested, imprisoned, and ultimately executed!

It gives a very colorful history of the Knights Templar.

Be forewarned, however, that it is not a book devoted to their history, but simply involves them in a peripheral manner.


Eric The(WellRead)Hun[>]:)]
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 2:56:54 PM EDT
For a more expanded history of the Order, check these out:

[i][b]Lionhearts: Richard I, Saladin, and the Era of the Third Crusade[/b][/i] by Geoffrey Regan, 288 pages, Walker and Co, $25.00

[i][b]Dungeon, Fire and Sword: the Knights Templar in the Crusades[/b][/i] by John J. Robinson, M. Evans and Co., 1991, $29.95


[i][b]The New Knighthood: A History of the Order of the Temple[/b][/i] by Malcolm Barber
Cambridge University Press, 1994, $14.95

Those are more scholarly works on the Order that came to be known as the Knights Templar!

Eric The(SeeWhatIMeanWhenISay'Well-Read'!)Hun[>]:)]
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 3:01:56 PM EDT
I just got ahold of "the Name of the Rose" for my daughter it's a foreign DVD heavy on history (and Sean Connery).

Great to get youngsters interested in the topic.
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 3:12:45 PM EDT
I just got ahold of "the Name of the Rose" for my daughter it's a foreign DVD heavy on history (and Sean Connery).

Great to get youngsters interested in the topic.
View Quote

The one with the great love scene in the stable?
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 3:18:17 PM EDT
Post from ShamusMcOI -
Though I'm also curious about the more juicy stuff as well, such as their ties with the arc of the covenant, and various conspiracy type stuff as well.
View Quote

Then by all means, [i][b]Foucault's Pendulum[/b][/i] will be the one for you!

Eric The(serious)Hun[>]:)]
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 3:27:50 PM EDT
"The Hiram Key" by Christopher Knight & Robert Lomas a good read linking the Knights Templar to Modern day masonry by actual masons. Alot of interesting factual? history
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 3:38:34 PM EDT
id recommend "The history of the Knights Templar"
"The Hiram Key" "The Second Messiah" and "Rosslyn" very intersting books concerning the Templars.I also read a book about Saladin which had lots of Templar information but the title escapes me.
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 3:44:19 PM EDT
I just got ahold of "the Name of the Rose" for my daughter it's a foreign DVD heavy on history (and Sean Connery).

Great to get youngsters interested in the topic.
View Quote

The one with the great love scene in the stable?
View Quote

Yup...Just about the time kids need a Potty Break!

And I monitor what they see...
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 4:13:23 PM EDT
Some of the speculation about what happened after the suppression of the order is quite interesting.

For instance, the Temple had the most skilled navy of the time.  They were one of the few martitime forces existing in the world at that time and were willing and able to sail out of sight of land.   That fleet vanished from the harbor at La Rochelle before they could be taken into custody.  Where did they go?
Why did Christofer Columbus sail out under a Templar cross almost 200 years later?

What about the many other fabled treasures the Templars were said to possess?  Where did they go?  Did they never have them?  Or did an inner circle of knights take them away to keep them safe from the excommunicate Philip Le Bel and his heretic chancellor Guillaume De Naugaret?   Where are they now?

Did the Templars survive as an organization, but merely go underground and change their methods?  Did they secularize and become mere bankers in Switzerland?  What about the Swiss Guard at the Vatican?  Did the Temple offer it's services back to the Church after the church had been purged of the venality of The French captivity?

Frankly most of the speculation is probably idle, but it's great material for fiction, and there is ample fiction on the subject, much of it quite good.

Of the other questions:  were the Templars involved in perverse sexual rites?  Probably not.  The inquisition against them was unable to find any credible evidence to that effect and all witnesses who claimed such practices were either found to be unreliable or just plain lying, or had been tortured (which even then was known to be an unreliable method of gaining accurate information since a man or woman will readily tell you what you want to hear to avoid further pain.

Were some Templars involved in homosexual practices?  Without a doubt.  At no time in history have men or women placed in sexually exclusive communities failed to engage in homosexual practices to sate their appetites.  Certainly not all or even a large minority would succumb, but some would.  And some homosexuals would be drawn to the company of men (or women) in order to exercise their appetites.  However, the Templars had STRICT rules to prevent such behaviors, and there is no reason to believe that they were not largely successful. Probably the Templars were less prone to such behaviors than were religious living in other monastic communities.

Were the Templars secret heretics?  Well, it is known that the Templars had more cordial relations with the Saracens than did any other christian community in the Holy Land.  Saladin was said to respect them deeply not merely for their military prowess (which was exceptional) but also for their fair mindedness.  Templars were well regarded in diplomatic circles for ensuring fairness.  This would tend to point toward extraordinary tolerance for different points of view while at the same time holding to a disciplined core belief.  The Templars were based on the ruins of King Solomon's Temple in Jerusalem as well, and likely had extensive interaction with Jewish elders and scholars while excavating the ruins. Perhaps they developed greater appreciation for hebrew traditions as well.  That might ruffle some feathers in Europe as well.  

I would even venture it likely that the Templars engaged in ritual practices with moorish or hebrew flavors, but were, at their core, Christian.  At the time that would be grounds for charges of heresy.

Worshiping a head?  Seems pretty stupid.  May they have venerated the head of a statue of some religious figure such as John the Baptist or Solomon himself?  Maybe. But no head was ever found and accounts were not consistent and thus not reliable.

What the Templars were guilty of is wealth in a kingdom where the King had squandered his own treasury and was resorting to state supported terrorism to extract more from anyone he could.  That was enough to cause their public downfall.  That and their elitism and secrecy made it relatively easy for Philip to wage a PR war against them.

There are a large number of books out there.  Do an Amazon search and print it out, then go to a library and take some out.  There are a lot of books with agendas and you need to filter those agendas out, but reading them is educational as well. I have great respect for the ideal of the Templars, but withhold judgement on a lot of the particulars yet.

Link Posted: 1/3/2003 6:42:43 PM EDT
[b]icemanat95[/b], you are quite knowledgable about Templar lore and legend!

Are you familiar with the legend of the Mandylion, the supposed 'burial cloth of Christ' that the Knights possessed in Constantinople?

Does it not amaze you that we find the Shroud of Turin suddenly turning up in France in 1357, in the possession of Geoffrey de Charney, one of the Grand Masters of the Order itself?

When the shroud was first put on display in 1357 (50 years after the disbanding of the order) by the family of Geoffrey de Charney who was also burned at the stake with Jacques De Molay, the Templar's Grand Master in Paris, the first people viewing the shroud recognized the image to be that of Christ.

Was this Mandylion actually the Shroud of Turin? Was this the 'head' that the Templars were said to have worshipped? The very likeness of Christ?

One of my favorite legends is that when Louis XVI was guillotined in 1793, an unknown citizen leaped upon the platform and shouted
'Jacques De Molay, you are avenged!' and then quietly went away.

This is wonderful stuff!

Eric The(Thrilled)Hun[>]:)]
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 7:05:34 PM EDT
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 7:11:03 PM EDT
[i][b]Dungeon, Fire and Sword: the Knights Templar in the Crusades[/b][/i] by John J. Robinson, M. Evans and Co., 1991, $29.95
View Quote

I have read that, and found it worthwhile.  It's the only one about the Templars that I have read, so there may be better available.  I would check amazon.com and do a search.  Read the user reviews.
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 7:12:42 PM EDT
I recommend "Born in Blood" by David Stevenon.

Very interesting, explores possible connections to early/mid- 2nd millennium England, Revolutionary U.S. Colonies, all kinds of things.
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 7:23:54 PM EDT
Required reading:

[u]Le Morte D'Arthur[/u]

Sir Thomas Malory
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 7:34:40 PM EDT
The Knights Templar was an organization sanctioned by the Roman Catholic Church in 1128 to guard the road between Jerusalem and Acre, an important port city on the Mediterranean Sea. The Order of Knights Templar participated in the Crusades and earned a name for valor and heroism.

With many nobles and princes sending their sons to join the Knights Templar, the Order also became very wealthy and popular throughout Europe.

In 1298, Jacques DeMolay was named Grand Master of the Knights Templar, a position of power and prestige. As Grand Master however, Jacques DeMolay was also in a difficult position. The Crusades were not achieving their goals. The non-Christian Saracens defeated the Crusaders in battle and captured many vital cities and posts. The Knights Templar and the Hospitalers (another Order of Knights) were the only groups remaining to confront the Saracens.

The Knights Templar decided to reorganize and regain their strength. They traveled to the island of Cyprus, waiting for the general public to rise up in support of another Crusade.

Instead of public support, however, the Knights attracted the attention of powerful lords, who were interested in obtaining their wealth and power. In 1305, Philip the Fair, King of France, set about to obtain control of the Knights Templars. They had been accountable only to the Church. To prevent a rise in the power of the Church, and to increase his own wealth, Philip set out to take over the Knights.

The year 1307 saw the beginning of the persecution of the Knights. Jacques DeMolay, along with hundreds of others, were seized and thrown into dungeons. For seven years, DeMolay and the Knights suffered torture and inhuman conditions. While the Knights did not end, Philip managed to force Pope Clement to condemn the Templars. Their wealth and property were confiscated and given to Philip's supporters.

During years of torture, Jacques DeMolay continued to be loyal to his friends and Knights. He refused to disclose the location of the funds of the Order and he refused to betray his comrades. On March 18, 1314, DeMolay was tried by a special court. As evidence, the court depended on a forged confession, allegedly signed by DeMolay.

Jacques DeMolay disavowed the forged confession. Under the laws of the time, the disavowal of a confession was punishable by death. Another Knight, Guy of Auvergne, likewise disavowed his confession and stood with Jacques DeMolay.

King Philip ordered them both to be burned at the stake that day, and thus the story of Jacques DeMolay became a testimonial to loyalty and friendship
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 7:37:31 PM EDT
A Short History of the Ancient Order

The International, Ecumenical and Military Order was founded at Jerusalem in 1118 by Hugh de Payens, Geoffrey de Saint-Omer, and seven other French knights.  The Order was consecrated to the protection of pilgrims and the defence of the Holy Land. The founding knights took monastic vows and were known as "The Poor Knights of Christ." King Baldwin II, King of Jerusalem (1118-1131), installed the Order in a part of the Palace of Jerusalem, Solomon's Temple, for their residence and armoury, resulting in the name "Knights of the Temple," or simply "Templars."

At the Council of Troyes in 1128, the Order was confirmed by Pope Honorius II, who gave it the strict rule dictated by an abbot of Clairvaux named Bernard (later to become Saint Bernard). This was more than coincidence, as Bernard of Clairvaux was the nephew of Andre de Montbard, who was one of the original founders of the order.  The Knights also received the white vestment as a symbol of the purity of their lives, to which Pope Eugenius added "the red cross with two bars."

Unlike the Knights of St. John Hospitaller, who were formed initially to comfort and aid the sick and poor in the Holy Land; the Templars were, from the outset, warrior monks whose primary purpose was the protection of Christianity.  The Order's battle honours in the defence of the Holy Land were legion. Following the fall of Jerusalem in 1187, the Templars withdrew to Acre. They defended Acre until, in 1291, the city was captured with the Grand Master of the Order, William de Beaujue, dying in the city's defence. The surviving Templars, with their new Grand Master, were the very last to leave the city.

After the fall of Acre, the Order withdrew to Cyprus, with its main seat at Limmasol and its headquarters in the Temple monastery in Paris. After many decades of sacrifices and rendering services, the Order had amassed great wealth and had grown to be not only very wealthy, but very powerful as well. This wealth and power excited the envy and greed of Philip the Fair, King of France, who was indebted to the Templars.  In 1307, King Philip ordered the arrest of all Templars in France and seized the Order's possessions. Philip concocted charges of heresy and perfidy, but was unable to judge the Order himself because the Order answered only to the Pope. Accordingly, Philip set out to coerce the Pope  against the Templars. Finally, in 1312, without any direct evidence of wrong doing, Pope Clement V yielded to the pressure of King Philip and issued a Bull suppressing the Order. The Order then reverted to its original status of a secular military order of chivalry.

In France, Philip imprisoned the Grand Master of the Templars, Jacques de Molay, as well as other Templars. Torturing the Templars by methods we can only imagine and read about with horror, Philip obtained false "confessions," but never learned the location of the many Templar riches he sought for himself.  Philip ordered Jacques de Molay to renounce the Order and confess to heinous acts... or be put to death. In the end, Jacques de Molay flatly refused to either admit to the false accusations or renounce the Order. As a result, he was burnt at the stake in 1314 near Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris.  

Immediately before his death, while the flames were enveloping his body, Jacques de Molay's voice was heard, cursing Pope Clement and King Philip and his heirs, praying to Christ Himself to prove the innocence of the Templar Order.  Witnesses recorded that de Molay shouted that if the Templars had been unjustly condemned, Pope Clement was to be summoned to answer to God for his actions within 40 days, and Philip within a year. Pope Clement died on 20 April, 33 days after de Molay ... and on 29 November, Philip follow him in death to be judged.  Philip's heirs faired no better, as over the next 14 years, all three of his sons became king...and then died. The Capetian dynasty of France was over.

The Kings of Spain and England were not so quick to condemn the Templars, but eventually they were forced "underground" and lost their possessions. Pope Clement had designated the Knights of St. John Hospitaller to receive all Templar property confiscated. In England, however, King Edward II kept most of the property for the crown and Templars were not hunted down and murdered like they were in France.

Prior to his martyrdom in 1314, the 23rd Grand Master, Jacques de Molay, invested Jean-Marc Larmenius with his powers. Larmenius was unanimously recognised as the new Grand Master following de Molay's death. He gathered together the dispersed remnants of the Order and, in 1324, gave the order the Charter of Transmission, which ensured the continuity of the order while it continued to exist "underground."

Link Posted: 1/3/2003 7:54:21 PM EDT
some other interesting facts concerning the Templars and Jacques de Molay. The reason we consider Friday the 13th to be unlucky is because Molay and the Templars were arrested on Friday 13 October 1307.
Another theory concerning the the Shroud of Turin is that the shroud was used to cover Molay after being subjected to the same tortures Jesus was made to suffer. That would explain why the shroud eneded up with family of a Templar, and also explain the timeline of the shroud. Radio carbon dating matches up with the approximate period to Molay and the Templars.
many many interesting and puzzling things sorrunding the brave and mysterious order of the Knights of the Temple of Solomon.
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 8:52:16 PM EDT

I recommend "Born in Blood" by David Stevenon.

Very interesting, explores possible connections to early/mid- 2nd millennium England, Revolutionary U.S. Colonies, all kinds of things."

I have to echo this one... Born In Blood is an excellent history of the Knights Templar, their evolving into the Masons.
Link Posted: 1/3/2003 11:52:57 PM EDT
Post from EX11B -
Another theory concerning the the Shroud of Turin is that the shroud was used to cover Molay after being subjected to the same tortures Jesus was made to suffer.
View Quote

Yes, I have heard that story as well. The only problem is that one still must explain the mysterious 'singe' that makes up the image of the figure on the shroud.

Additionally, the figure shows that the wounds from the nails were accurately positioned on the [u]wrists[/u] of the supposed victim, not on the [u]palms[/u] of the hands as was commonly portrayed in the art of the 14th Century AD.

Any attempt to crucify a victim by driving nails through the palms would have been futile - the palms would have given way as the nails ripped through the flesh. Only by placing the nails at the wrists, through the ulna and radius, could the body have supported its weight! A fact that appears to have been unknown among midieval artists.
That would explain why the shroud eneded up with family of a Templar, and also explain the timeline of the shroud.
View Quote

The fact that Geoffrey de Charney was also in Constantinople during the sack of that city and the destruction, desecration, and looting of that city, and the resulting loss of the famous 'Mandylion', would also account for its presence with the de Charney family in 1357!
Radio carbon dating matches up with the approximate period to Molay and the Templars.
View Quote

I am not at all convinced that the carbon dating results were accurate in the case of the Shroud! Remember that it had been subject to a smoldering wood fire in the 'fire of Chambery' in France (1532). Repairs to the Shroud were made by the Poor Clare nuns in 1534.

This fire may have altered the carbon signature of the cloth, but, of course, this is speculative, as is everything concerning this strange relic of history!

The Shroud was once again saved from a fire in 1997, if you can believe that! See [url]http://www.parascope.com/articles/0597/shroud.htm[/url]


Someone, or something, there is that does not like this piece of cloth.

Eric The(Interested)Hun[>]:)]
Link Posted: 1/4/2003 3:04:38 AM EDT
its seems the more i read abouit the Templars, the more im intriqued.
What the hell did they find when excavating below the temple? and what about the maps and documents they supposedly found below the temple? these are some of the reasons that i love reading about the Knights of the Temple.
Link Posted: 1/4/2003 5:15:11 AM EDT
Link Posted: 1/4/2003 7:19:50 AM EDT
Cool info guys!

What about the connection between the the Templar fleet that vanished and the Freemasons?  Do you guys believe the theory about the remaining Templars becoming Feemasons to hide their original identities?  There was also some theory about the Freemason connection as far back as the Crusades.  Where the Freemasons already a backup organization for the Templars for a SHTF scenario?
Link Posted: 1/5/2003 9:25:31 AM EDT

We can't let this thread get buried yet![:D]
Link Posted: 1/5/2003 1:29:02 PM EDT
Read Born In Blood, The Lost Secrets Of Freemasonry, by John J. Robinson. It can be ordered from the PA Grand Lodge PH# 1-800-336-7317. My copy is being held hostage by a lodge brother. I guess he wants his, We Were Solders DVD back........
Link Posted: 1/5/2003 2:18:07 PM EDT
Link Posted: 1/5/2003 2:51:37 PM EDT
The Templars having a great navy? They obviously had ships, especally after having to withdraw to Cyprus. But I don't recall ever hearing of it being unusually powerful or effective against the Muslims...

But the Hospitallers, they DID have a fantastic navy. One that the latter Crusaders had to depend on after they treacherously destroyed their fellow Christian allies in the Byzantine Empire.
Link Posted: 1/5/2003 2:57:44 PM EDT
Link Posted: 1/5/2003 3:10:56 PM EDT
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