Skip to comments.Knights Templar win heresy reprieve after 700 years
Posted on 10/12/2007 11:41:08 AM PDT by xzins
VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - The Knights Templar, the medieval Christian military order accused of heresy and sexual misconduct, will soon be partly rehabilitated when the Vatican publishes trial documents it had closely guarded for 700 years.
A reproduction of the minutes of trials against the Templars, "'Processus Contra Templarios -- Papal Inquiry into the Trial of the Templars'" is a massive work and much more than a book -- with a 5,900 euros (4,125 pounds) price tag.
"This is a milestone because it is the first time that these documents are being released by the Vatican, which gives a stamp of authority to the entire project," said Professor Barbara Frale, a medievalist at the Vatican's Secret Archives.
"Nothing before this offered scholars original documents of the trials of the Templars," she told Reuters in a telephone interview ahead of the official presentation of the work on October 25.
The epic comes in a soft leather case that includes a large-format book including scholarly commentary, reproductions of original parchments in Latin, and -- to tantalise Templar buffs -- replicas of the wax seals used by 14th-century inquisitors.
Reuters was given an advance preview of the work, of which only 799 numbered copies have been made.
One parchment measuring about half a metre wide by some two metres long is so detailed that it includes reproductions of stains and imperfections seen on the originals.
Pope Benedict will be given the first set of the work, published by the Vatican Secret Archives in collaboration with Italy's Scrinium cultural foundation, which acted as curator and will have exclusive world distribution rights.
The Templars, whose full name was "Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon", were founded in 1119 by knights sworn to protecting Christian pilgrims visiting the Holy Land after the Crusaders captured Jerusalem in 1099.
They amassed enormous wealth and helped finance wars of some European monarchs. Legends of their hidden treasures, secret rituals and power have figured over the years in films and bestsellers such as "The Da Vinci Code".
The Knights have also been portrayed as guardians of the legendary Holy Grail, the cup used by Christ at the Last Supper before his crucifixion.
The Vatican expects most copies of the work to be bought up by specialised libraries at top universities and by leading medieval scholars.
BURNED AT THE STAKE
The Templars went into decline after Muslims re-conquered the Holy Land at the end of the 13th century and were accused of heresy by King Philip IV of France, their foremost persecutor. Their alleged offences included denying Christ and secretly worshipping idols.
The most titillating part of the documents is the so-called Chinon Parchment, which contains phrases in which Pope Clement V absolves the Templars of charges of heresy, which had been the backbone of King Philip's attempts to eliminate them.
Templars were burned at the stake for heresy by King Philip's agents after they made confessions that most historians believe were given under duress.
The parchment, also known as the Chinon Chart, was "misplaced" in the Vatican archives until 2001, when Frale stumbled across it.
"The parchment was catalogued incorrectly at some point in history. At first I couldn't believe my eyes. I was incredulous," she said.
"This was the document that a lot of historians were looking for," the 37-year-old scholar said.
Philip was heavily indebted to the Templars, who had helped him finance his wars, and getting rid of them was a convenient way of cancelling his debts, some historians say.
Frale said Pope Clement was convinced that while the Templars had committed some grave sins, they were not heretics.
SPITTING ON THE CROSS
Their initiation ceremony is believed to have included spitting on the cross, but Frale said they justified this as a ritual of obedience in preparation for possible capture by Muslims. They were also said to have practised sodomy.
"Simply put, the pope recognised that they were not heretics but guilty of many other minor crimes -- such as abuses, violence and sinful acts within the order," she said. "But that is not the same as heresy."
Despite his conviction that the Templars were not guilty of heresy, in 1312 Pope Clement ordered the Templars disbanded for what Frale called "the good of the Church" following his repeated clashes with the French king.
Frale depicted the trials against the Templars between 1307 and 1312 as a battle of political wills between Clement and Philip, and said the document means Clement's position has to be reappraised by historians.
"This will allow anyone to see what is actually in documents like these and deflate legends that are in vogue these days," she said.
Rosi Fontana, who has helped the Vatican coordinate the project, said: "The most incredible thing is that 700 years have passed and people are still fascinated by all of this."
"The precise reproduction of the parchments will allow scholars to study them, touch them, admire them as if they were dealing with the real thing," Fontana said.
"But even better, it means the originals will not deteriorate as fast as they would if they were constantly being viewed," she said.
I'll wait for the paperback version.
Oh the conspiracy folks are going to have fun with these.
This is like Hillary giving back campaign money two years after the election is over.
This is a Friday Neener Friendly Thread.
I posted it.
It’s about Knights.
I agree, the Illuminate(sp?)/Free Masons screams should begin in the next few minutes
Ping before the conspiracy crowd blows in.
Ping for the nubile Hooter’s waitresses and ale.
Im among those that think they were the good guys and that the bad guys have held their legacy hostage for all this time. I find it most instructive that they were the bad guys in the virulently anti-Christian book and movie The Da Vinci Code. The fact that story, among others, specifically echos the heresies of both the Islamists and the Gnostics and attempts to portray The Poor Knights of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon as the source of evil is instructive.
Liberals still practice this kind of lying. Its called projection. Accuse your enemies of your own crimes (or sins) and they can't then credibly bring out the truth against you. It's where the "they all do it" defense came from.
Doesn’t this prove that the Templar/Illuminati/Masonic/Bilderberger/New World Order conspiracy has finally infiltrated the Vatican, and issued this whitewash? /s
“Ping before the conspiracy crowd blows in.”
Not to worry, I have my secret decoder ring on so all are safe.
Vatican paper set to clear Knights Templar
The Telegraph | 05/10/2007 | Malcolm Moore
Posted on 10/05/2007 4:44:50 AM EDT by Daffynition
Vatican book on Templars’ demise
BBC | October 5, 2007
Posted on 10/05/2007 4:44:55 PM EDT by NYer
Thanks xzins. Duplicate, alas, so no ping.
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Would that make them Boogie Knights?
you forgot the Skull and Bones/Girl Scouts/Space Aliens at Area 51
here is another link:
Vatican to Publish Templar Trial Papers
A Country Funeral
As a young minister, I was asked by a funeral director to hold a grave-side service for a homeless man, with no family or friends. The funeral was to be held at a cemetery way back in the country, and this man would be the first to be laid to rest there.
As I was not familiar with the backwoods area, I became lost; and being a typical man did not stop for directions. I finally arrived an hour late.
I saw the backhoe and the crew, who were eating lunch, but the hearse was nowhere in sight.
I apologized to the workers for my tardiness, stepped to the side of the open grave and saw that the vault lid was already in place. I assured the workers I would not hold them up for long, but this was the proper thing to do. The workers gathered around, still eating their lunch. I poured out my heart and soul. As I preached, the workers began to say “Amen,” “Praise the Lord,” and “Glory”! I preached, and I preached, like I’d never preached before, from Genesis all the way to Revelations. I closed the lengthy service with a prayer and walked to my car.
As I was opening the door and taking off my coat, I overheard one of the workers saying to another, “I ain’t never seen anything like that before, and I’ve been putting in septic tanks for twenty years.”