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CHARLES G. ADDISON, ESQ. The history of the Knights Templars, Temple Church, and the Temple

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CHARLES G. ADDISON, ESQ.
The history of the Knights Templars, Temple Church, and the Temple
page 115



spread throughout Christendoms, *nd so exceedingly increased in possessions, revenues, and wealth, and specially in England, as you will wonder to reade in approved histories, and withall obtained so great and large priviledges, liberties, and immunities for themselves, their tenants, and farmers, &c, as no other order had the like."* He farther observes, that the Knights Templars were cruce stanati, and as the cross was the ensign of their profession, and their tenants enjoyed great privileges, they did erect crosses upon their houses, to the end that those inhabiting them might be known to be the tenants of the order, and thereby be freed from many duties and services which other tenants were subject unto ; " and many tenants of other lords, perceiving the state and greatnesse of the knights of the said order, and withall seeing the great priviledges their tenants enjoyed, did set up crosses upon their houses, as their very tenants used to doe, to the prejudice of their lords." This abuse led to the passing of the statute of Westminster, the second, chap. 33,f which recites, that many tenants did set up crosses or cause them to be set up on their lands in prejudice of their lords, that the tenants might defend themselves against the chief lord of the fee by the privileges of Templars and Hospitallers, and enacts that such lands should be forfeited to the chief lords or to the king. Sir Edward Coke observes, that the Templars were freed from tenths and fifteenths to be paid to the king ; that they were discharged of purveyance ; that they could not be sued for any ecclesiastical cause before the ordinary, sed coram conservatoribus suorum privilegiorum ; and that of ancient time they claimed that α felon might take to their houses, having their crosses for his safety, as well as to any church.J And concerning these conservers or keepers of their privileges, he remarks, that the Templars and Hospitallers "held au ecclesiastical I court before a * 1'age 431. t 13 Edwnrd I. } i Inrt. p. 433.


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