The Historical Timeline of the Knight Templars


The Knight Templars were a large organization made up of devout Christians from the Middle Ages who fulfilled an important mission: to protect European tourists visiting the holy sites and to conduct military operations at the same time. 

For centuries this rich, powerful and mysterious order has fascinated historians and the public. The history of the Knights Templar, their financial acumen, their military strength, and what they did for Christianity during the Crusades still circulates in modern culture. Chapter

Who Is The Templar?

After the Christian army took Jerusalem from Muslim control during the Crusades in 1099, groups of pilgrims from all over Western Europe began visiting the Holy Land. However, many of them were looted and killed while traveling through Muslim-controlled territories.

In about 1118, a French knight named Hugues de Payens, together with eight relatives and acquaintances, created a military organization called the poor soldiers of the Temple of Christ and Solomon, later referred to as the Knights Templar.

With the support of Baldwin II, the ruler of Jerusalem, they established a headquarters on the city’s sacred Temple Mount (the source of the name of the Kino sign) and promised to protect Christian visitors to Jerusalem.

Endorsement of the Pope:

Initially, the Knights Templar faced criticism from some religious leaders. But in 1129, the group was officially recognized by the Catholic Church and supported by the famous French abbot Bernardo de Clairvaux. 

Bernard is the author of "Praise the New Chivalry", a text that supports the Knights Templar and promotes their growth. In 1139, Pope Innocent II issued a papal proclamation, granting special rights to the Knights Templar. 

Among them, the Templars are exempt from paying taxes and can build their own lecture halls without being under the jurisdiction of anyone other than the Pope.

The Knights Templar in Action:

The Knights Templar established a thriving banking network and gained tremendous financial influence. Its banking system allows religious pilgrims to deposit assets in their home country and withdraw funds from holy sites.

Knights are known for their strict codes of conduct (which include no pointy shoes and no kissing their mothers, as well as the rules outlined in the "Rules of the Templars") and iconic dress style, white habit printed with a simple red fork.

Members swore poverty, chastity and obedience. They are not allowed to drink, gamble or swear. Prayer is vital to their daily life, and the Templars especially worship the Virgin Mary. As the Knights Templar grew in size and status, they established a new chapter throughout Western Europe.

At the height of their influence, the Templars had a large fleet, owned the Mediterranean island of Cyprus, and were the main banking and credit institution of the European monarchs and nobles.

Expanded the Responsibilities of the Knights:

Although their original purpose was to protect the pilgrims from danger, the Knights Templar gradually expanded their responsibilities. They became the defenders of the crusaders of the Holy Land and were called brave and skilled warriors. 

The organization was known for its fierce fighters during the Crusades, and it was driven by religious enthusiasm, and could not withdraw unless the number was clearly outnumbered.

The Downfall of the Knights Templar:

At the end of the 12th century, the Muslim army regained Jerusalem and reversed the situation of the Crusades, forcing the Knights Templar to relocate many times. The fall of Acre in 1291 marked the destruction of the last crusader refuge in the Holy Land.

In the following decades, European support for military operations in the Holy Land began to weaken. In addition, many secular and religious leaders have become increasingly critical of the wealth and power of the Templars.

In 1303, the Knights Templar lost its presence in the Muslim world and established a base of operations in Paris. There, King Philip IV of France decided to cancel the order, perhaps because the Templars refused to provide additional loans to the indebted ruler.

Arrests and Executions:

On Friday, October 13, 1307, dozens of French Templars were arrested, including Jacques de Molay, Grand Master of the Order. Many knights were cruelly tortured until they confessed to false accusations, including heresy, homosexuality, financial corruption, devil worship, fraud, spitting on the cross, etc.

Under pressure from King Philip, Pope Clement V reluctantly disbanded the Knights Templar in 1312. The group's property and monetary assets were turned over to a rival knight, the Hospital de los Caballeros. 

However, it is believed that King Philip and Edward II of England seized most of the wealth from the Knights Templar.

The Knights Templar Today:

The Catholic Church admits that the persecution of the Knights Templar is unjustified. The church claimed that Pope Clement was pressured by secular rulers to alter the order.

Although most historians agree that the Knights Templar was completely disbanded 700 years ago, there are some who believe that the organization went underground and continues to this day in some form.

In the 18th century, some groups, especially Freemasonry, revived some of the symbols, rituals and traditions of medieval knights.

Currently, there are several Templar-style international organizations for the public to join. These groups are represented all over the world and aim to maintain the values ​​and traditions of the primitive medieval order.

Some historians claim that after the end of the Crusades, the Knights Templar may have secretly preserved the Shroud of Turin (believed to be a canvas placed on the body of Jesus Christ before burial) for hundreds of years.

Another popular belief is that the knights discovered and preserved relics and religious artifacts, such as the Holy Grail, the Ark of the Covenant, and the partial cross where Christ was crucified.

Although many of these speculations are considered fictitious, there is no doubt that the Templars have caused conspiracy and fascination, and may continue to do so in the coming years.

Written by: Renu Gorkhnath Chauhan

Edited by: Gourav Chowdhury

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