Trial Against the Templars

Trial Against the Templars – Scrinium – ASV A.A. Arm. 208, 209, 210 and 217 – Archivum Secretum Vaticanum (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)

Poitiers (France) β€” 1307–1312

The trial against the Knights Templar and the interrogation protocol of Jacques de Molay: official documents from one of the most notorious and mysterious events in history were rediscovered only a few years ago

  1. Founded in 1119, the Knights Templar were some of the fiercest warriors in all of Christendom

  2. The tremendous wealth and power accumulated by the Templars also earned them jealous enemies

  3. The trial from 1307 to 1314 that resulted in their downfall is witnessed here by various official documents

Trial Against the Templars

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  1. Description
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Description
Trial Against the Templars

The "Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon", commonly known as the Knights Templar, were a monastic military order that rose from humble beginnings in the early 12th century to becoming one of the most powerful organizations in the Western world in the 13th century. In the early–14th century, the Templars suddenly collapsed in one of the most mysterious and infamous episodes of medieval history, apparently the victims of a wide-reaching conspiracy against them. The collection of documents Trial Against the Templars brings together five key historical sources on the circumstances of the downfall of the legendary order from the Vatican Secret Archive, which document the papal inquisition against its members in France between 1307 and 1314 – including the famous Chinon Parchment with the record of interrogation of the last Grand Master Jacques de Molay (ca. 1243–1314) and other high-ranking Knights Templar.

Trial against the Templars

The Vatican Secret Archive is a centuries-old guardian of the world's largest documentary heritage, which comprises 35,000+ volumes dating back to the 8th century. Its name is somewhat inaccurate: Archivum Secretum Vaticanum more accurately translates as the β€œPrivate Vatican Library” – is private in the sense that it is the personal, private possession of the Pope, although contemporary records are kept classified. These are primarily diplomatic documents, ranging from state papers and official documents, to correspondence and account books. A series of documents stored under the shelf marks ASV A.A. Arm. 208, 209, 210 and 217 deal with one of the most infamous and mysterious events in history: the trial of the Knights Templar, which began in 1307 and lasted until 1314.

Medieval Court Records

The first three documents (208, 209, 210) are the surviving specimens of an original corpus of 5 parchment rolls, including the confessions of seventy-two knights questioned by Pope Clement V (ca. 1264–1314) between June 28th and July 2nd, 1308. The fourth parchment (217) records the final acquittal granted to Grand Master Jacques de Molay (ca. 1243–1314) and to other high dignitaries of the Order, even if it did not save them from being burnt at the stake by King Philip IV of France (1268–1314), who had instigated the conspiracy against the Templars in order to wipe his extensive debts to them clean while seizing much of their property. A final document is included, listed in the Reg. Aven. 48 of Pope Benedict XII (1285–1342), which recorded the personal observations of representatives of the Holy See summarizing the depositions of various Templars.

The facsimile edition features:

Three fragments of originally five documents recording the confessions of 72 Knights Templar who were interrogated by Pope Clement V in Poitiers from June 28 to July 2, 1308. (ASV A.A. Arm. 208, 209, 210)
Notes of Clement V regarding the confessions.
A fragment of the Chinon Parchment containing the acquittals of Jaques de Molay and other Templar leaders. (ASV A.A. Arm. 217)

Codicology

Alternative Titles
Processus contra Templarios
Prozess gegen die Templer
Size / Format
5 documents / 69-77 Γ— 53-64 cm
Origin
France
Date
1307–1312
Style
Language
Illustrations
1 decorated initial and several symbols
Content
Documentation of the papal inquisition against the order of Templars, which took place in France between 1307 and 1314.

Available facsimile editions:
Trial Against the Templars – Scrinium – ASV A.A. Arm. 208, 209, 210 and 217 – Archivum Secretum Vaticanum (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Scrinium – Venice, 2007
Limited Edition: 799 copies
Single Page

Trial Against the Templars

The Chinon Parchment

This historical document is dated August 17-20, 1308 and contains the interrogation records of Grand Master Jacques de Molay and four other high-ranking Templars. It was written by Cardinals BΓ©renger Fredoli, Stephan de Suisy and Landolfo Brancacci, who, as papal delegates, interrogated the five Templars imprisoned at Chinon Castle.

The records contain not only the Templars' confessions of guilt, but above all their absolution in the name of Pope Clement V, which was to be granted on the condition that they renounce their "heresy" – which did not happen due to pressure from the French king. The remarkable document was long considered lost until it was accidentally rediscovered by the Italian historian and paleographer Barbara Frale in the Vatican Secret Archives.

Trial Against the Templars – Scrinium – ASV A.A. Arm. 208, 209, 210 and 217 – Archivum Secretum Vaticanum (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Facsimile Editions

#1 Processus Contra Templarios

Scrinium – Venice, 2007
Trial Against the Templars – Scrinium – ASV A.A. Arm. 208, 209, 210 and 217 – Archivum Secretum Vaticanum (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City)
Trial Against the Templars – Scrinium – ASV A.A. Arm. 208, 209, 210 and 217 – Archivum Secretum Vaticanum (Vatican City, State of the Vatican City) Copyright Photos: Ziereis Facsimiles

Publisher: Scrinium – Venice, 2007
Limited Edition: 799 copies
Binding: Leather Box
Commentary: 2 volumes by Marco Maiorino, Pier Paolo Piergentili, S.E. Mons. Sergio Pagano, Barbara Frale, and Luca Becchetti
Languages: English, Italian
1 volume: Exact reproduction of the original document (extent, color and size) Reproduction of the entire original document as detailed as possible (scope, format, colors). The binding may not correspond to the original or current document binding. The facsimile edition features: Three fragments of originally five documents recording the confessions of 72 Knights Templar who were interrogated by Pope Clement V in Poitiers from June 28 to July 2, 1308. (ASV A.A. Arm. 208, 209, 210) Notes of Clement V regarding the confessions. A fragment of the *Chinon Parchment* containing the acquittals of Jaques de Molay and other Templar leaders. (ASV A.A. Arm. 217)
Facsimile Copy Available!
Price Category: €€€
(3,000€ - 7,000€)
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