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WILLIAM STUBBS Seventeen lectures on the study of medieval and modern history and kindred subjects

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WILLIAM STUBBS
Seventeen lectures on the study of medieval and modern history and kindred subjects
page 216



2IO THE KNIGHTS OF S. THOMAS. [VIII. he had called it after S. Thomas the Martyr ; and, somehow or other, as his design was better known, the family of the martyr seem to have approved of it; the brother-in-law and sister of Becket became founders and benefactors, and a Hospital of S. Thomas the Martyr of Canterbury, of Acre, was built in London itself on the site of the house where the martyr was born1. Little indeed is known of the early days of the knights ; they were not numerous, and probably poor ; but when Peter des Roches, the Bishop of Winchester and ex-justiciar, was in Palestine in 1231, he placed them in a new church and under the rule of the Templars, giving them also in his will a legacy of 500 marks2. They had their proper dress and cross : according to Favin their habit was white, and the cross a full red cross charged with a white scallop ; but the existing cartulary of the order describes the habit simply as a mantle with a cross of red and white3. They were building a new church when Edward was at Acre; and in 1278 we find him writing to the King of Cyprus on their behalf*. The Chronicle of the Teutonic knights, in 1 In the ninth year of John, Oct. 13, 1207, messengers of the house of S. Thomas at Acre, being canons, had a safe-conduct. They had come to England to seek alms for the redemption of captives ; Rot. Pat., ed. Hardy, i. 76. The ' Terra Sancti Thomx ' abutted on the land of the Temple at Casale Album, near Coquet ; Paoli, Cod. Dipl. S. Joh., i. 468. Richard, the English tanner, at Acre, in 1273 sold two houses in the Street of the Tannery to the Hospitallers ; ib. 195, 196 3 Matthew Paris, ed. Wats, p. 472. 3 MS. Cotton, Tiberius C. V. 4 Mas-Latrie, Hist, de Chypre, ii. 81, 82, where two documents are printed from the letters of Edward in the Public Record Office. In one of these the king commends Ralph de Coumbe, master of the Hospital of S. Thomas, to the good offices of Hugh of Lusignan, in Cyprus; in another, dated Sept. 15, 1279, Ralph de Cardolio and the brethren write to the king on the misfortunes of Palestine, and urge that the master of the Order should be sent into Syria. See the 7th Report of the Deputy Keeper of the Records, App.II.No. 2252 ; Royal Letters, MS. {Chancery), No. 4260.


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