Friday, October 12, 2007

Knights Templar Finally Get Thumbs Up from the Home Office

OK, so the medieval Christian order known as the Templars is not actually getting a thumbs up from the Vatican. News that the Knight's will be "partly rehabilitated" is, however, about as close as a bunch of ages-dead "heretics" can get to a hearty slap on the back. Never mind that it's about 700 years late. The real story is that the Knights Templar have won a heresy reprieve, and the minutes of the trials against the Templars (Processus Contra Templarios -- Papal Inquiry into the Trial of the Templars') is the subject of an epic republication -- and I do mean epic in both scope and price. Pope B XVI is getting the first of 799 copies of this massive volume, which has a price tag slightly north of $8000.00. At the very least, this is great news for historic researchers of every stripe. Scholars will have access to the original documents from the trials -- no one outside of the Vatican has seen these papers since the 14th century! Any time the Vatican Secret Archives serves up from their special stash, I count it as a victory for general world knowledge. Of course, it may damn the Vatican's forebears or at least further taint the Church's middle ages reputation. But, hey, it's all in the name of historical accuracy, right?

Knights Templar Win Heresy Reprieve after 700 Years Fri Oct 12, 2007 4:10am EDT By Philip Pullella

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - The Knights Templar, the medieval Christian military order accused of heresy and sexual misconduct, will soon be partly rehabilitated when the Vatican publishes trial documents it had closely guarded for 700 years. A reproduction of the minutes of trials against the Templars, "'Processus Contra Templarios -- Papal Inquiry into the Trial of the Templars'" is a massive work and much more than a book -- with a 5,900 euros ($8,333) price tag. "This is a milestone because it is the first time that these documents are being released by the Vatican, which gives a stamp of authority to the entire project," said Professor Barbara Frale, a medievalist at the Vatican's Secret Archives. "Nothing before this offered scholars original documents of the trials of the Templars," she told Reuters in a telephone interview ahead of the official presentation of the work on October 25...

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