The Templar Knight

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Spain and Portugal – battle between Islam and Christianity

Hard to believe that modern Spain and Portugal were once part of a global caliphate (from 711 CE) – ruled by Muslim emirs. It then became a battleground between Islam and Christianity for eight hundred years. Finally, by 1492, the…

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Toledo – former capital of Spain – photos from my visit

I visited Toledo in 2010 and spent a lovely couple of days in this medieval city. Fascinating place because you really sense the Christian, Jewish and Muslim heritage of Al-Andalus in modern Spain. Toledo was once a jewel in the…

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Safed – home to the Templars and the Jewish Kabbalah

To Jewish people, Safed – or Tzfat – has a special significance as the home of the Kabbalah. That is the mystical secrets believed to be contained within the five books of Moses otherwise known as the Torah. DISCOVER MORE:…

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Abu al-Quasim – father of modern surgery

In the centuries before the Knights Templar were formed, much of Europe was ruled by Muslim emirs. These were Islamic polities prepared to absorb the learning of the Greeks and Romans and become learned civilisations. They produced great surgeons, artists…

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The turning point for Moorish rule in Spain

While the crusades suffered setbacks in the east with the loss of Jerusalem and the advances made by Saladin – all was not well for Muslim rulers in the west.  It’s often forgotten that the crusades were not just waged…

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