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M.Besant E.Walter
Jerusalem, the city of Herod and Saladin

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M.Besant E.Walter
Jerusalem, the city of Herod and Saladin
page 257



KNIGHTS TEMPLARS. as is more than probable, by that mysterious teaching which put the order above the Church, and gave an inner and a deeper meaning to doctrines which the vulgar accepted in their literal sense. It is impossible now to say whether the Templars were Gnostic or not ; probably they may have imbibed in the East not only that contempt for the vulgar Christianity which undoubtedly belonged to them, but also whatever there was left of Gnosticism floating about in the minds and memories of men. In that strange time of doubt and restlessness, the revolt against Borne took many forms. There was the religion of the Troubadour, half a mocking denial, half a jesting question ; there was the angry protest of the Provençal, that every man is a priest unto himself; there was the strange and mysterious teaching of the Abbot Joachim; and there was, besides, the secret creed, which owned no bishop and would obey no pope, of these Knights Templars. But this was to come ; we are still in the time when St. Bernard can write of them, " 0 happy state of life, wherein one may wait for death without fear, even wish for it, and receive it with firmness!" This was when their banner Beauséant was borne in the front of every battle, with its humble legend, " Not unto us, 0 Lord, not unto us, but unto Thy name give the glory." In the thirteenth century, the Hospitallers had nine thousand manors, and the Templars nineteen thousand. Each of these could maintain a knight in Palestine. And yet they did nothing for the deliverance of the country. Li frères, li mestre du Temple, Qu'estoient rempli et ample D'or, et d'argent, et de richesse, Et qui menoient toute noblesse, Où sont ils? After the reconquest of Palestine, and until their final and cruel suppression, they seem to have given up all


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