Sunday, November 13, 2011

Birth of the Knights Templar

In order to understand better the position of Knights Templar at the beginning of the second millennium as well as their (potential) meaning today, it is important to have a clear picture of their origin and original intent. This blog will present notes on the first decade of their existence. That is between 1118, their year of origin at Jerusalem, and 1129, their formal endorsement by the Church at the occasion of the Council of Troyes.

Often blogs will initially be based on information from en.wikipedia.org. Information from other sources will be added if and when individual blogs are improved.

Chroniclers write that the French knight Hugues de Payens approached King Baldwin II of Jerusalem with eight knights in order to form a group of Knights. Two of them were his brothers but all were his relatives by either blood or marriage. So the founding fathers of Knights Templar were:
* Hugues de Payens
* Godfrey de Saint-Omer
* Payen de Montdidier
* Archambaud de St. Agnan
* Andre de Montbard
* Geoffrey Bison
* Rossal
* Gondamer
* The ninth knight remains unknown, although some have speculated that it was Count Hugh of Champagne

The group proposed the creation of a monastic order for the protection of these pilgrims. Baldwin II of Jerusalem agreed to their request. He allowed them to stay in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, which in fact was a converted mosque, the Al-Aqsa Mosque. This spot became the location for their Templar headquarters. These knights became a premier group of religious knights protecting the visitors of Jerusalem.

The Temple Mount was located on the ruins of the Temple of Solomon. Thus the Knights named their order the "Poor Knights of Christ and the Temple of Solomon".

No comments: