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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 314



is a small Norman doorway, opening npon a dark circular staircase which leads to the summit of the round tower, and also to THE PENITENTIAL CELL. This dreary place of solitary confinement is formed within the thick wall of the church, and is only four feet six inches long, and two feet six inches wide, so that it would be impossible for a grown person to lie down with any degree of comfort within it. Two small apertures, or loopholes, four feet high and nine inches wide, have been pierced through the walls to admit light and air. One of these apertures looks eastward into the body of the church towards the spot where stood the high altar, in order that the prisoner might see and hear the performance of divine service, and the other looks southward into the Round, facing the west entrance of the church. The hinges and catch of a door, firmly attached to the doorway of this dreary prison, still remain, and at the bottom of the staircase is a stone recess or cupboard, where bread and water were placed for the prisoner. In this miserable cell were confined the refractory and disobedient brethren of tbe Temple, and those who were enjoined severe penance with solitary confinement. Its dark secrets have long since been buried in the silence of the tomb, but one sad tale of misery and horror, probably connected with it, has been brought to light. Several of the brethren of the Temple at London, who were examined before the papal inquisitors, tell us of the miserable death of Brother Walter le Bacheler, Knight, Grand Preceptor of Ireland, who, for disobedience to his superior the Master of the Temple, was fettered and cast into prison, and there expired from the rigour and severity of his confinement. . His dead body was taken out of tbe solitary cell in the Temple at morning's


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