Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Knights Templar And The Source Of Wisdom

Several of us were giving Chevski a good-natured ribbing about his shameless misappropriation of The Templar Head, turning it into the Brazen Head of Terms Termax. Mostly, i'm just jealous that he thought of it before it occurred to me! I came up with my own Knights Templar knock-off, the Knights Imperious, but hadn't thought to mine some of the other myths.

Chevski's post on the Brazen Heads reminded me of that thoroughly discredited speculative non-fiction book, The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail. Well, perhaps i'm overstating the case, when I say thoroughly discredited. Still, it's well worth the read, as long as you remember that much of it is speculative, and any time you see any materials referenced, that are provided by Gerard de Sede, Pierre Plantard, or the other hoax co-conspirators, you should discard any conclusions that rely on their manufactured evidence. There is some intriguing stuff in Holy Blood, Holy Grail that would make for an exciting "imperial" background for your D&D game.

Here is an excerpt from The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail, that occurred to me after I read Chevski's post.

"In France the arrested Templars were tried and many subjected to torture. Strange confessions were extracted and even stranger accusations were made. Grim rumours began to circulate about the country. The Templars supposedly worshipped a devil called Baphomet. At their secret ceremonies they supposedly prostrated themselves before a bearded male head, which spoke to them and invested them with occult powers."

- page 72 & 73

4 comments:

Matthew Slepin said...

One of my absolute favourite books. Is it true? Is it a total hoax? Who cares! It's a exciting, intellectual thriller. Why anyone would prefer the Da Vinci Code is beyond me.

I have gotten immense amoutns of inspiration from HB, HG.

A Paladin In Citadel said...

Sadly, the book relies heavily on historical documents, that have been revealed to be part of an elaborate hoax by de Sede and Plantard.

Any conclusions that rely on the manufactured evidence of de Sede and Plantard are therefore almost completely unreliable.

A cracking good read though, don't you think?

P. S. Mangus said...

A good simple write-up on this subject can be found here:

http://www.templarhistory.com/head.html

I have always gravitated toward the theory that it was the head of John the Baptist. I have read some very compelling arguments supporting this theory anyway.

Chris said...

To get a bit meta and Umberto Eco about it: what if the very existence of the Templar Knights is nothing but an extended historico-literary and architectural hoax. *Everything* associated with the Templars was fabricated and inserted into the historical record from whole cloth. ;)