This engraving by Tommaso de Vivo is one of pleasant surprises found in Processus Contra Templarios. There are several very nicely printed images, carefully placed between pages in special envelope-style protective sleeves. The original title of this piece is “Clemente V interroga 72 Templarios”. The scene depicted probably did not look like that in real life, but Clement did in fact interrogate 72 Templars. I think de Vivo was sympathetic to the Pope, because he looks like a benevolent monarch trying to make sure that his subjects are treated kindly and fairly.
It is, of course, very funny to see the accused Templars showing up at the Pope’s residence in full uniform, with swords at their sides. I sure hope that not all of the 72 knights were in battle gear. Otherwise they would have taken the Pope hostage.
Anyway, really wish I could find a better image of this engraving.
See also: Templars’ absolution in Poitiers. July 2, 1308.
“Pris de Marrah, 1098” is an oil painting by Henri Decaisne (1799-1852), a Belgian painter known for his portraits and historic pieces. This work depicts an episode of the First Crusade. It appears that the artist’s preparatory sketch of this painting has been recently sold on eBay, so I decided to show some of those images as well.
The question of course, is : “Why is there a Knight Templar present at Marra, some 20 years before the founding of the Order?” It would not have been unlikely for a Crusader to have a red cross on his tunic. However, the fact that the tunic is white makes me believe that this is an anachronistic detail. The whole thing becomes too funny if you look at the cover of “Jacques de Molay : Le crépuscule des templiers” by Alain Demurger (pictured below). [click to continue…]
Templier en habit de guerre a cheval (1783). Mounted Knight Templar in battle gear. Really, not bad for the late 18th century, especially if you consider the image I posted earlier. Perhaps the horse does not look capable of carrying a knight in full armor.
A painting by Fleury-François Richard (1777-1852). Original title: Jacques de Molay, grand Maître des Templiers (1806). This masterpiece of flawless composition depicts a scene from Jacques de Molay’s final day. King Philip’s personal confessor is visiting the imprisoned Grand Master of the Knights Templar, attempting to persuade him to admit the guilt for the crimes that de Molay never committed. The priest representing the king is shown sitting on what resembles a throne, while de Molay stands in front of him, shackled. The guard is visibly anxious, perhaps awaiting those who will be coming in order to take the Templar to the place of execution. The dark alcove in the background looks almost like an altar – a reminder of the fact that the last Grand Master of the Knights Templar insisted on daily celebration of mass. It is not easy to interpret the gesturing of the two main characters. Perhaps the confessor wants de Molay to consider divine judgment, while the Grand Master himself points in the direction of the door that will lead him to the seat of the true King who will not find any guilt in him?
Amazon has reproductions of this painting.
Initiation of Jacques de Molay by François-Marius Granet
Knights Templar initiation practices