The Templar Knight

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Constantinople – glorious capital of the Byzantine empire!

A visit to Istanbul – once called Constantinople and capital of the Byzantine Empire

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Pagan Temples that became Christian churches pt 3

Last month I was in Rome and one theme of my trip was looking at pagan temples of the Roman period that were then converted into Christian churches during the Middle Ages. In the middle of the Roman Forum are…

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Knights Templar links to the Cathar heresy

There were links between the Knights Templar and the Cathars or Albigensian heresy that might explain why the King of France crushed the Templars

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Was the devil always ugly – apparently not!

We’re used to the devil being depicted as a monstrous and hideous figure. But in early depictions, he could actually be quite handsome. And he might even be seen wearing blue and not the demonic red we are more used…

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Archangel Michael and sinners

Here is a roadside shrine I came across in the town of Ancora in northern Portugal. Behind bars is a painted and carved depiction of sinners amidst flames and above them the triumphant figure of the archangel in what I’m…

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The Black Death and those who tried to escape it

One of  the great literary works of the medieval period is The Decameron by Giovanni Boccaccio (1313-1375) that describes a group of people fleeing the Black Death and telling each other stories to pass the time. The collection of gripping…

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Interview with the Grand Master – The Grand Commandery of Knights Templar

I’ve been asked by many of you – where are today’s Knights Templar? Well, here is an interview with Sir Mark Borrington – Grand Master of The Grand Commandery of Knights Templar and he explains the organisation and the work…

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The 13th Warrior – medieval movie and guilty pleasure

I’ve never understood the hostility that this movie generated when it came out in 1999 – it seemed that once the critical slating got underway, everybody jumped on board to throw rotten tomatoes at it…and you can go to the…

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Eleanor of Aquitaine – a fiery medieval queen

Eleanor of Aquitaine was one of several fiery queens in the medieval period. Far from being wilting wallflowers, many female monarchs wielded real power. They did this in the face of men who felt women should know their place. But…

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Exorcism, fairies, devils and how to turn a maiden in to a love slave

There is a growing belief in exorcism in the US and Europe. The casting out of devils is coming back into vogue. It’s something our ancestors would have understood. Evil spirits were all around them waiting to make them sick,…

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