Learning English - Words in the News
17 October, 2007 - Published 14:42 GMT
Vatican to publish Knights Templar trial
Later this month, the Vatican will publish a document which lay forgotten in the Pope's secret archives for hundreds of years. It is the account of the trial of the Knights Templar during the reign of Pope Clement V at the beginning of the fourteenth century. This report from David Willey:
This is one of the most astonishing publishing ventures ever. Even with a cover price of over eight thousand dollars, the facsimile edition of the minutes of the trial of the Knights Templar is already a financial success. Libraries and collectors from around the world have reserved most of the eight hundred copies of the parchment documents and an accompanying book which are going on sale soon.
The parchment tells in mediaeval Latin how the legendary Crusader Knights - who still fascinate contemporary writers of popular fiction - were tried for heresy by the Inquisition and found not guilty.
The Christian military order - who called themselves the Poor Fellow Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon - protected Christian pilgrims visiting the Holy Land from the beginning of the Crusades. But after the recapture of Jerusalem by Muslims and military defeats of Crusader armies two centuries later, the knights fell on hard times. To answer accusations of heresy because of alleged secret initiation ceremonies and other crimes, Pope Clement ordered a trial and it’s the record of these proceedings - which partially rehabilitated the Knights - that are now being published in this expensive luxury edition.
were tried for heresy by the Inquisition
pilgrims visiting the Holy Land
fell on hard times
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