Amputations, Be-headings and Death

The Knights Templar were not easily scared in fact they thought death was a blessing given their religious beliefs.

Because the Templar knights believed in their holy cause whole heartedly they considered it an honor to die in battle as they would be assured a place in heaven!

This was probably a good thing as the knights templar were ‘shock troops’ that were on the front line, they were always in the thick of things in battle and specialized in breaking up enemy front lines and causing fear and disarray amongst enemy troops front-lines.

Unlike other Orders like the Knights Hospitaller and the Teutonic Knights who’s main purpose was to protect and care for the ill, injured and dying. The Knights Templar were created simply as a fearsome fighting force.

Because of this willingness to ‘get stuck in’ the Knights Templar were always being injured or killed and because of the violent martial nature of their order it often was often, only a short term vocation!

Grand Masters who lost their heads

Well they didn’t lose their heads, they had their heads chopped off!

Grand Master Gérard de Ridefort was beheaded during the Siege of Acre by infamous Muslim Leader Saladin in the year 1189.

Grand Master Bernard de Tremelay and an army of around 40 Templar Knights were also be-headed during the Siege of Ascalon in 1153 – Ascalon was Fatimid Egypt’s greatest and most important frontier fortress City!

Bernard de Tremelay and his knights were surprised to find themselves alone in the city as the rest of their crusader army had failed to follow them through the breached city walls.

Inside the city walls they became quickly outnumbered and surrounded by the cities local population who attacked, killed and chopped off all their heads, including that of Grand Master Bernard de Tremelay.

Coat of Arms Gérard de Ridefort

Coat of Arms Gérard de Ridefort

Still Got Your Head – What about being burned alive instead?

King Philip IV owed the Templars a lot of money, so he convinced his friend Pope Clement V that the Templars were guilty of heresy and other crimes and plotted to have them arrested.

On Friday the 13th 1307 a large number of Templar knights were arrested and tortured until they confessed to heresy in the Order.

The organisation was then disbanded, Jacques de Molay The only remaining Grand Master was taken prisoner and burned at the Stake in Paris – the year was 1314.

As you can see being a Templar Knight was not for the ‘faint hearted’ and was very often a short lived position!

Templars Burned at the Stake

Templars Burned at the Stake

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