The relationship between the Knights Templar and the Holy Grail may be far-fetched, but historically, you can certainly relate the grail writers to the temple knights.
The 12th century was the century of mythical stories. It was in this century, the legend of King Arthur was invented and described by Geoffrey de Monmouth. It was this legend that inspired Chrétien de Troyes, Wolfram von Eschenbach, and later also Robert de Boron to write the Grail novels.
Furthermore, it was the period of the first crusades and the Knights Templar. This raises the possibility that the Knights Templar may be connected to the stories of the grail.
- What is the Holy Grail?
- The Knights Templar (full story in six questions)
Chrétien de Troyes and the Templars
Probably the evidence will not stand in a courtroom, but there might be a connection between Chrétien de Troyes and the Templars.
Chrétien’s surname refers to the city of Troyes. In Troyes, the rules of the Templar order were established in 1129 by Pope Honorius II. These rules were modeled after the regulations of the Cistercians of Bernard de Clairvaux. The Templars were knight monks who took a vow of poverty, chastity, purity, and obedience.
Chrétien was employed as a writer by Henry I of Champagne and his wife Maria of France. This Henri was the grandson of Count Hugo de Champagne, who was one of the first Knights Templar in 1125.
His grandson Henri (not a Knight Templar) took part in the Second Crusade (1145-1149). When he was in Jerusalem, he was captured by Kilij Arslan. A large amount of ransom was paid to get him released. Unfortunately, he died shortly after his release.
After his death, Henry’s wife got engaged to Philippe d’Alsace (Philip of Alsace) of Flanders. Although this engagement would come to nothing, Philippe was impressed by Mary’s court writer and decided to hire him.
Chrétien writes in his book that he received an old manuscript from Philippe d’Alsace that served as a source for the story about Percival. This is why Chrétien de Troyes dedicated his novel to Philippe d’Alsace.
Wolfram von Eschenbach and the Knight Templars
Wolfram refers to Kyot de Provins as his source. Kyot was probably Guiot, a troubadour and a spokesman for the Templars from the village of Provins in Champagne. As a writer, he was also associated with the Counts of Champagne. In his book, Wolfgang mentions the keepers of the Grail Temples, which could refer to the Knight Templars.
Guiot of Kyot obtained his information about the story of the Grail in Toledo, Spain, where he was given access to Flegetanis’ documents.
Flegetanis, who had found the secrets of the Holy Grail written in the stars, was a Muslim astronomer and a descendant of King Solomon.
Von Eschenbach tells it all in the eighth book about Percival. It also states that Kyot went to investigate the writings of Flegetanis and ended up in Anjou. This also implied a line with the Templars. Fulk V, Count of Anjou, had strong ties with them and was probably one of the first members.
It is not clear whether Kyot really existed or whether he was a fabrication by Von Eschenbach to give more value to his history. In itself, it is remarkable that both Von Eschenbach and De Troyes mention that they did not invent the story of the Grail, but it was passed on to them by someone who directly or indirectly had a line with the Counts of Champagne.
What did the Holy Grail mean to the Knights Tempar?
The truth is we don’t really know. The Knight Templars might have inspired Chretien de Troyes and Wolfram von Eschenbach. Writers like Graham Hancock and Laurence Gardner might have found some historical evidence that the Knight Templars were the protectors of the grail.
In 1982 the book The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail by Lincoln, Baigent, and Leigh was published. They introduced a new concept of the Holy Grail. The Grail was seen as the womb of Mary Magdalene and represented the offspring of Jesus Christ. According to them, Mary Magdalene and Jesus were married to each other. The Holy Grail (in Old French Sangreal) is not San Greal (Holy Grail) but Sang Real (royal blood).
The writers of The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail claimed that Godfrey of Bouillon founded the Knights Templar to protect the secret of the holy bloodline. Another secret society, the Priory of Sion, would be an offshoot of the Templars. Although this Priory was probably a fabrication of a Frenchman, Pierre Plantard, the idea of a holy and royal bloodline remained.
The plot of the bestseller The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown is based on this idea.
The Holy Grail and the Nazis
I, too, crawled (and stumbled) through these caves in the light of a strong flashlight. The climb to the entrance was undeniably difficult, and the caves were very imposing. What I love about the photo above are the orbs, which might be of paranormal origin. They are balls of energy, maybe even ghosts or spirits.
But then again, they might be specs of dust. Who knows…