October 13, 1307 - Hundreds of Knights Templar in France are simultaneously arrested by agents of Phillip the Fair, to be later tortured into "admitting" heresy.
On October 13, 1307, hundreds of Knights Templar in France were simultaneously arrested by agents of Philip the Fair, to be later tortured into admitting heresy in the Order. The Knights Templar were a 200-year-old military order, supposedly answerable only to the Pope. But Philip used his influence over Clement V, who was largely his pawn, to disband the order and remove its ecclesiastical status and protection in order to plunder it.What caught my eye on this story was the nickname for the king. How could anyone who tortures to force confessions be considered “the Fair.” Here is a further quote from the same article that explains it. It seems that even in 1307 looks meant more than character.
What became of the Templar treasures in France has long been a mystery that has led to many theories and speculations. There are a number of stories regarding Templars who escaped from Philip's agents, such as the tale that a number of ships sailed from France to Scotland possibly containing some of the Templar treasure, and that some of the Knights who sailed to Scotland later fought in the Battle of Bannockburn with Robert the Bruce when the Scots gained their independence from England.
A modern historical view is that Philip, who seized the considerable Templar treasury and broke up the Templar monastic banking system, simply sought to control it for himself. In 1314, he had the last Grand Master of the Templars, Jacques de Molay, burnt at the stake in Paris. According to legend, de Molay cursed both Philip and Clement V from the flames, saying that he would summon them before God's Tribunal within a year; as it turned out, both King and Pope died within the next year.
A member of the Capetian dynasty, Philip was born at the Palace of Fontainebleau at Seine-et-Marne, the son of King Philip III and Isabella of Aragon. Philip was nicknamed the Fair (le Bel) because of his handsome appearance.
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