Traduzione della Regola dei Templari scritta da S. Bernardo di Chiaravalle e tradotta in inglese da Enrico Calzolari.
We present a short historical introduction about the Temple, the Rule written by St. Bernard of Clairvaux in Latin, the English and Italian translations, the reproduction of some essential documents to reconstitute the Temple's persecutions.
We give notice of the International Congress about the "Knights Templars' Trial" that will be in September 23/24, 2000 at the Carmelite's Monastery in Bocca di Magra (La Spezia - Northern Italy) during which we will discuss and show many unedited parchements, discovered a short time ago.
To take part in the Congress or to be informed about its contents please address:
THE KNIGHTS TEMPLARS
……the news that a new kind of Chivalry is appearing….. has been propagated for some time.........
St. Bernard of Clairvaux
Short historical notes.
The Crusades and the consequent origins of the Orders of Chivalry were not a sudden historical phenomenon, but, on the contrary, they ripened slowly, in consequence of decline and confusion diffused in Europe at the end of first millenium.The eco of the great Christian victories of Leon XIII “the Isauric” at Constantinople (717) and of Charles the Hammer in Poitiers (732) over Islam, were only a remembrance.
The large empire of Charlesmagne was dissolving because of quarrels and rivalries of his grand-children. Vikings were invading from the North, Saracenes from the South and Hungarians from the East, making bloody raids. Lastly Barbarians attacked the whole continent, via land and via sea, exposing to risk of invasion also the great historical capitals as Rome and Paris. The Old Europe, which was before Celtic and after Christian, was losing its cultural integrity.
Islam, from the Caliphate of Cordoba (756), was pressing to the heart of Europe. In such general chaos, the Church was not free from decline too. Monasteries and abbeys had been destroyed and had suffered the controversies between the various feudatories. Within ecclesiastical hierarchies there was laxism, accompanied by too much necessity of going in for politics, neglecting to profess Christianism and to observe the Rule of St. Benedict. Therefore many of the values that had characterized the late Middle Ages passed through a crisis and above all the reasons on which the secular custom of “Rex et Sacerdos” (King and Priest), that is the unification of the two powers (regal and sacerdotal) in the person of the Emperor was founded, were crumbling. Until the sceptre was in the hands of pious and honest men, harmony and justice reigned, but when it passed to the hands of less scrupolous and avid men, the sceptre broke in lots of pieces and the feudatory’s power imposed agreements and compromises on the clergy. The clergy was not insensible to material benefits that derived from this kind of policy.
The Pope, consequently, was compelled to compare with powerful and independent hierarchies, and he lost the traditional authority, becoming almost like a bishop. As after every break-up a new revival may follow, so it happened also in Old Europe, which laboriously arrived to a new equilibrium and to normality in order to obtain survival. Invasions produced new installations and their inhabitants were compelled to leave weapons and to give themselves to productive activities and trade. At the same time in many populations and in new feudal communities it was restoring a minimum legality. In obtaining new manners of life the German king Henry the Third, nicknamed the Black, was a great help. He was crowned at Aachen in 1028 and he subjected very suddenly Bohemia, Burgundy and Lorraine; afterwards he supported the Christian king Peter of Hungary, against the pagan king Samuelaba, who was defeated in the open-field in 1044. After two years Henry the Third arrived in Italy to put down the controversies about the choice of the Pope. In Rome he removed the three schismatic antagonists (Benedict the Ninth, Silvester the Third and Gregory the Sixth) and reconciled the different factions and supported the German bishop Zuidger, who became Pope as Clement the Second. A little later king Henry the Third was crowned emperor and so he could influence the choice of three subsequent popes, who were German. The last was his uncle, Pope Leo the Ninth, who was the first promoter of the Gregorian Reform. This equilibrium nevertheless did not permit to obtain a true autonomy for the Church, which was aiming, by Reform, at definite rules and at new organization criteria in order to reconquer an active function in society. Upon the death of Pope Stephen the Ninth (1058) preceeded in death by emperor Henry the Third, the Roman Nobility made an attempt to control the choice of pope and supported the bishop of Velletri, who became Pope Benedict the Tenth. The other cardinals did not accept this appointment, so had him excommunicated. They appealed to Empress Agnes, mother of the young king Henry the Fourth. She summoned a new conclave in Siena, during which the bishop ofFlorence was nominated, becoming Pope Nicholas the Second. To defend the autonomy of the clergy and to complete the Reform of the Church Pope Nicholas the Second asked the help of Geoffrey of Lorraine, brother of the late Pope Stephen the Ninth, Geoffrey escorted the new pope to Rome for his entroning in 1059.
Pope Nicholas the Second convoked the Lateran Synod to issue the rules in order to choose the pontiff, who had to be designated only in a conclave, composed of cardinals and bishop-cardinals, and could be supported by clergy and people, but nevermore to be subjected to vetoes of nobility and kings.
To permit a gradual transition a clause had been included to maintain the right of the heirs of king Henry, to express an opinion on eventual candidature. The Synod forbade all priests to receive an ecclesiastic office from laymen. These rules were the bases of new autonomy and independence of St. Peter’s Chair, which could a little later call all European courts to constitute a large army destined to reconquer Jerusalem and the Holy Land. In this period there was the increasing of renown of El-Cid Campeador (Rodriguez Diaz de Vivar, 1043-1099) never defeated in the open-field, who contributed to the redemption of Christianity.
Deus Vult (God will it).
At the end of XIth century Europe had not yet solved all it's problems, but it was not insensible to the loss of what it was constructed and to accept further islamic penetrations. At that time the Arabs reached Bosphorus, the news arrived in Europe about the massacres perpetrated by Orthokits and Fatimites against the pilgrims attracted to the Holy Sepulchre, Pope Urban the Second convoked two Councils: one in Piacenza (March, 1095) and the other in Clermant (November, 1095) to call all European courts to march against the Arabs. This occured at the beginning of the period of crusades, ending in the year 1291. After 1291 endeavours to form new armies destined to reoccupy the Holy Land were not followed by popes and sovereigns.
The Christian chivalry, which had fought thousands and thousands of battles in the sunny desert, bent towards Europe, and so finished the epoch of the “armoured monks". The Orders of Chivalry, which were formed after the second crusade, played the most efficient role of support for the Christian army, in order to warrant the outcome of military expeditions which succeeded during three centuries.
In many occasions their extreme sacrifice permitted to save from disaster whole army corps, blocked by rivalry and envy of noblemen, divided amongst them because of pride and vanity.
The Knights Templars.About the year 1070 some merchants of Amalfi (Southern-Italy) rebuilt in Jerusalema little church, St. Mary the Latin, positioned in the Latin area. They also restored some contiguous rooms, using them as a home for pilgrims arriving in the Holy Land. The church was entitled to St. John and it was entrusted into the care of a group of religious men, who most probably were monks. However, it is not possible to confirm whether they were Benedictines.
Soon, this group of religious men was called “St. John Hospitallers” and in 1113 by a papal Bull of Pope Pasqual the Second, they were granted status of an order. Their functions of hospitality and accompanying were very important, but not sufficient to protect pilgrims from assaults that marauders continually made. As a result another order was founded in 1119, by the knight Ugone dei Pagani, from the omonimous family of Nucera dei Pagani (Southern-Italy). He was helped by a French knight, Godfred of Saint Omer. They recruited an armed squad and obtained from Wormand, Patriarch of Jerusalem, and from Baldwin, the king, the authorization to control the approach ways to the Holy Sepulchre. The king assigned to them some buildings contiguous to the ruins of Solomon Temple and they, in order to impose themselves a monastic discipline, adopted the Rule of St. Augustine. Thus rose the “Paupers Commilitones Christi Templique Salomonis” (Poor Fellow-soldiers of Christ and of the Solomon Temple). Unfortunately, there is no reliable information about the early period of life of this order. We know that in 1125, in Acri, a deed was drawn up in which Hugh de Payens (Ugone dei Pagani) is mentioned as “Magister Templi” (Temple's Master). In the same year Count Hughes of Champagne became a member of the order, along the knights Fulk Anjou, Gundemar and Andrew of Mountbard. The presence of the Count of Champagne and of the uncle of Bernard, André, and the important role that the Burgundian Abbot was assuming in the Church, helped in rising the Knights Templars' prestige and in the year 1128 pope Honor the Second granted them an audience, on entreaty of Stephen, Patriarch of Jerusalem.
On that occasion the Knights Templars put foreward precise requests about official recognition of their order and the concession of guarantees, that were, during that time, practically essential in order to bear the costs of an army. The Pope, however, put their request off until the next Troyes Council, which took place some months later and in which the Cardinal Legate Matteo Albanese entrusted Bernard with the task of supervising changes in the rule and of doing the official introductions of the Knights Templars to the various ecclesiastical hierarchies.That meeting, so important for the future development of the Order, represented the turning point for the recognition and the growth of SolomonTemple. There is a wide relation of this council, drawn up by the clerk and monk Jean Michel, to whom the task of recording the proceedings was entrusted.
We know that Bernard, wishing to assure the autonomy of the Church - granted after only a few years - and to defend Christendom also by weapons, arrived at the Troyes Abbey after a delay of one month, due to his having caught influenza. This decision, made by Bernard, was a change in the opinion of Clairvaux Abbot, as previously he had expressed his perplexity about the wisdom of provoking an armed conflict against Islam, with the purpose of reconquering the Holy Sepulchre. Indeed he could not approve the shedding of blood for the sake of the Holy Sepulchre. It could be possible to pray Christ and God, with parity of faith and efficacy, anywhere.
Probably other reasons also existed for him to change his attitude. It is fair to suggest that the first was the bringing together of several sovereignes in a united purpose, guided and promoted by the Holy Roman Church, which could again reconquer its autonomy and affirm its leadership again. Also of concern was the possibility of having an army which could accomplish, in addition to its military tasks in the Holy Land, the surveillance and defence of monasteries in the entire West, of which there are thousands of places, houses, mansions and Temple's Commanderies (headquarters) constructed near Cistercian abbeys and situated along main roads. The Council finished with the authorization of the existence of the Order Knights Templars with the permission to wear a white woollen dress, much like a mantel, in order to cover their armour. In addition they had the authorization of adorning themselves with a double red cross, bestowed by Stephen, the Patriarch of Jerusalem.
At Troyes, Bernard not only inspired the new Temple's rule, which is an extraordinary example of renewal and transformation of trifling feudatory cavalry, but he also achieved a diplomacy masterpiece, as the occasion of recognizing Order and its purposes, allowed to indicate to European noble and rich people, the way to follow an exemplary life for a good purpose and to a just cause.
All of the abbeys propagated the address and all of the courts realized that people were changing and were now pressing against the churches and monasteries, as in the time when the Benedictine spirit enlightened Christendom.
As with monks, so too the Knights Templars, whose life, substantially identical in privations and sacrifices, differentiated only in the fighting with weapons in Christendom defence. After the Council, Hugh of Payens encouraged Bernard to write, in addition to a rule, also a homily by which to spur European cavalrymen to enter the Temple's army. After some time Abbot Bernard did attempt this task, producing a text which is a source of inspiration and prevaricated widely the "Temple's way", powerfully urged in the foundations, the criterion and the reasons on which the figure of medieval cavalryman was based, engaged in futile strifes and in vanity tournaments.
The text, entrusted to some Cistercian brothers, was read in all Christendom's seats and provoked an unprecedented wave of consent. Youth enthusiastically complied with new ideas and preferred to serve a Knight Templar, notwithstanding strong discipline and renunciations rather than being placed in a noble local feudatory's service. Europe's most powerful families entrusted the education of their sons to the Temple, whether to ingratiate themselves with the new Order, whose future power was yet to be foreseen, or because their presence in the territory could guarantee steadiness and prosperity. Some also, for the wish of avoiding tithes, paid to old clergy, and so enjoying the particular fiscal facilities granted to Temple.
These all concomitant elements allowed the Order to acheive in a few years the exceptional expansion throughout Europe and Overseas, as the words of St. Bernard had been well appropriate: "a new kind of Chivalry is appearing on the earth". Temple's greatness, its renown and power, had been realized in a historical period of about 170 years, beginning probably in 1136, when Innocent the Second (1130 - 1143) began to recompense the Order for the aid received, granted both the red cross and autonomy, with the right of answering to the Pope only.
Those years, both tumultuous and schismatic, offered the Knights Templars the possibility of rendering services either to the Pope or to St.Bernard, as they escorted him everywhere and were always present in the towns and in other locations where the monk went to restore order and to defend the rights of the successor of St.Peter.
Obtained as further recognition and an appreciation for their loyality, Knights Templars were able to grow and became visible throughout the whole continent, and were both loved and acclaimed by many people. They distinguished themselves in theHoly Land by greatness, courage, sacrifice, as Islamic cavalry acknowledged by both their merit and bravery in the battle-field. Amongst the various battles, in which the "white chlamyses" showed their heroism, are: Gaza's defence (1171); the battle of Tiberias (1187); Damietta's sacrifice (1219); Mansourah's epopee (1250) and the martyrdom of Sephet's in 1262.
After Saladin's entry, it was progressively proved that the supremacy of both the Arab and Christian army, not only had to flee from Jerusalem and Palestine, but also from the various strongholds of the coast. When Knights Templars closed ranks in St. John at Acri, they were compelled to displace the region regence in Cyprus and subsequently in Paris as well. Retiring in Europe, the Order was both powerful and very rich, as a consequence of the letters of credit that they had adopted, based on deposits and release of funds near the various mansions, which were spread everywhere.
This system avoided the transport of money and presented to all the ability to avail themselves of the necessary amount of money which was near every Temple's mansion. A little percentage on all transactions was allowed as a reward for the given service. In a short time rich merchants and many noblemen preferred to entrust theTemple with their riches, as well as the management of their lands and incomes, as they were better preserved. The immense patrimony managed by the Order as well as their wealth gave rise not only to envy, but also the appetites on the part of the clergy, who for many years could not have a good income or receive grants, which the nobility preferred to concede to "armoured monks". Also Philip the Fair, the King of France, had his eyes on the Temple's treasure, and driven by covetousness, hatched a plot to take possession of it.
Using all the possible advise as well as blackmailing the Pope, Bertrand of Goth (Clement the Fifth) was elected owing to a significant amount of strong pressures. He organized a defamatory campaign against the Knights Templars, exploiting delations and giving false witness against them, the same as which was given by some corrupt knights, who had been expelled from the Order. Moreover he imposed heavy taxes on Temple's possessions, in order to provoke reactions, of which there were many, because the Great Master protested and claimed the right of being exempted from the various taxes, as provided in the Papal bull. Philip the Fair, anticipating the reaction, was driven the more, by his disgregating actions, provoking feigned popular uprisings and propagating everywhere false charges: sodomy, desecration of the Crucified, spit on the Crucified, adoration of Baphomet.The great scandal which followed allowed him to proceed on mass-arrests and, according to the custom of that time, to question supposed culprits while being tortured. It is possible to think that many had not owned anything. The confession of guilt allowed Philip the Fair to institute trials and to obtain relative condemnations, even if the Pope made some attempts of mediation and tried, at first, in order to set himself against the king, who did not give up his scheme.
As a consequence of more diffused accusations and of interrogation statements, Clement the Fifth decided to entrust the Order's provinces to the Inquisition.
Dominican Friars zealously accomplished a great action, as the Pope's decree not only committed Knights Templars for trial, but also confiscated, at that moment, their possessions, which temporarily were entrusted either to inquisitors or to the Knights Hospitallers. The result was that tribunals succeeded in finding culprits, and confiscated more properties. It was Clement the Fifth, with a Papal bull of 22nd March, 1312 "Vox in excelsis" (A voice in the Heaven) and with a Papal bull the following May "Considerantes Dudum" (Considering since a certain amount of time) dissolved the Order of the Poor Fellow-soldiers of Christ and of the Solomon Temple:
"Cum gravi cordis amaritudine et dolore, non per modum definitive sententia ; cum eam super hoc secundum inquisitiones, et processus praedictus non possemus fere de iure, sed per viam provisionis, et Ordinationis Apostolicae praefactum, quondam Templi Ordinem, ac eius statum, abitum atque nomen sustulimus, removimus, et cassavimus, ac perpetuae prohibitioni subiecimus, Sacro Concilio aprobante, personas et bona eiusdem Ordinis Ordinationi, et dispositioni, sedi apostolicae reservantes. Dat. Viennae II° Nom. Maij an VII°".
"With a great heart bitterness and sorrow, and with a not definitive sentence; with it, about that and in conformity with inquisitions, and the above-said trial we cannot create the law itself, but with temporary measure, and with the preface of Apostolic See Orders, we have eliminated, removed, cancelled the Temple's Order and its Statute and its habit and its name, and, with the approvation of the Sacred Council, we have subjected to a perpetual prohibition persons and possessions of the same Order, by reserving Orders and dispositions of the Apostolic See. Promulgated inVienne, the Second day of May and the Seventh".
Persecutions which occured in France did not extend to other European states, notwithstanding Avignon had sent demands of arrests and judgements. The various crowns did not act against the Temple, except rarely, so French knights, escaped Philip's capture, together with those of foreign countries, retreated to other monastic confraternities or orders of knighthood, which could not be persecuted. Also the Order's summit had obtained mercy as the true aim of Philip was to obtain money and the expansion of his power, but not the bodily destruction of the Knights Templars'.
The Great Master of Knights Templars, Jacques de Molay, some months after his release, arranged to be present at a public ceremony, heard the confessions which were in turn extorted from him under torture, and, resentful of this fact, retracted in public all that was contained in the trial reports, proclaiming in a loud voice the innocence of the Order, which had been always faithful to the Rule, to the Church and to its King, whose glory is shining on Golghota.
Arrested together with some other dignitaries, he was condemned to death on 28th March, 1314, along with some brothers climbed the stake, to immolate themselves in defence of the Temple's honour. The flame dazzles continue to throw light in undying memory to the "White Chlamyses".
THE KNIGHTS TEMPLARS RULE
Rule of the Poor Fellow-soldiers of Christ and of the Solomon Temple
Prologue Our speech is above all firmly directed to all those who intend to renounce to the following of their own will and those who wish to serve the Great Lord with purity of spirit, in order to wear the prominent armour of obedience, performing such with very particular care, and bringing it to perfection with perseverance.
We therefore exhort you, those who have up to this time embraced the lay Army of the Lord not in order to serve Christ, but in order only of human convenience, to be a part of those whom the Lord has selected out of the greater number of men on the road to perdition and the Lord has convened by gratuitous pity to be defender of the Holy Church and we exhort you to hasten and become a member forever.
First of all, whoever you are, Oh Christ's soldier, you have chosen such holy conversation, you must necessarily use a pure diligence and a strong perseverance about your profession; which is acknowledged by God to be worthy and holy and sublime to the point that you will strongly deserve to obtain it, amongst the fellow-soldiers who have given their heart to Christ, if you observe it with purity and perseverance. For this profession, it may flourish again and shine once more within the Military Order which, having neglected zeal and justice, was not intent on defending the poor and the Church, as was its duty, but was busy at despoiling, robbing and murdering. We therefore willingly pledge ourselves again to our Lord Jesus Christ who has redeemed us from sin and damnation to be sent again to the holy lands of France and Burgundy, and gladly offer ourselves as victims, willing to obtain spiritual salvation and the spreading of faith.
We have gathered, with gratitude and fraternal pity, through the prayers of Master Hugh, who was the founder of this Army of the Lord, and by the Holy Spirit’s inspiration, from several mansions of Ultramontane Provinces, on this solemnity of Saint Hilary in the year 1128 after the Incarnation of the God’s Son, the ninth year from the beginning of the establishment in Troyes, and under God’s guidance, we are willing to hear again what was spoken before from Master Hugh, how he addressed the Knights' Order and the manner in which to observe according to the chapters and in accordance with the comprehension of our exiguous cleverness, what seemed to us to be absurd and all those which in the present council could not be referred to or said by memory, not for frivolity but for wisdom, we entrusted by our consent the approvation of the common chapter to the providence and the discretion of our venerable father Honorius and glorious patriarch of Jerusalem, Stephen, being not ignorant, but rather, cause of fertility and necessity, of the oriental religion and of the Army of the poor fellow-soldiers of Christ.
It is very reasonable indeed that the numerous fathers, have convened in the
above-mentioned council by divine influence, recommend the authority of our dictates: being present, it is not possible to pass their true sentences over in silence, I, John Michael, have deserved, by order of the council and of the venerable Abbot of Clairvaux, to whom this work was entrusted and due, to be the humble scribe of this page, by the grace of God.
Names of fathers present in the Troyes council.
First present was Matthew, bishop of Albano, legate by the grace of God of the Holy Church of Rome, Rainaldus archbishop of Reims, Henry, archbishop of Sens, and their fellow-bishops Ranchedus, bishop of Carnot, Goslenus, bishop of Soissons, the bishop of Paris, the bishop of Troyes, the Prelate of Orleans, the bishop of Auxerre, the bishop of Meaux, the bishop of Chalons, the bishop of Laon, the bishop of Beauvais, the abbot of Vezzelay, who after a short time was appointed archbishop of Lyon and legate of the Holy Roman Church, the Cistercian abbot, the abbot of Pontigny, the abbot of Trois Fontaines, the abbot of Saint Denis in Reims, the abbot of Saint Étienne in Dijon, the abbot of Molesmes; the above-mentioned abbot Bernard of Clairvaux was not missing, and whose opinion the above-written religious men spontaneously approve, Master Alberich of Reims and Master Fulgerius and many others, far too many to list, were also present.
Moreover, as regards to the ones that have not been listed, it seems fair to say that they are included in the fellows keen of verity. The fellow-soldier Theobald, the fellow-soldier of Neverre and Andrew of Baundemant attended the council with very great care, scrutinizing that which was excellent and mitigating what seemed absurd to them.
Hugh himself, Master of the Army, was present and had with him some brothers, namely Godfrey, Roland, Godfrey of Bisol, Paganum of Mount Didier and Archibald of Saint Amand.
The same Master Hugh, with his disciples, expounded the above-mentioned fathers about the mode and the observance of the short beginning of his Military Order, which was founded by Him who says: “I am the Principle, and I speak to you”, as you may remember. The council liked that, after having there carefully examined the rules, also with the aid and the emendations made by the Holy Scriptures, and according to the suggestions both of the Pope of Rome and of the Jerusalem Patriarch, and having received the consent of the chapter of the Poor Knights Templars, which is in Jerusalem, all which was registered, in order that nothing could be forgotten, and it could be indelebly preserved: so that, by a right way, it deserved to reach their Founder, whose sweetness exceeds honey that comparing it to Him that seems more bitter than absinth, and with whom they serve in a remarkable manner and they will rest in the world without end, Amen.
This, the beginning of the Rule of the Poor Fellow-soldiers of the HolyCity.
I Which divine office they have to hear.
You who renounce your will and to all the others who, in order to obtain the salvation of your souls, and those who serve with you, during partial time-vow, the Supreme Lord along with their horses and arms, wish to hear with piety and purity Matins and all services, according to canonical statutes and the customs of the Regular Doctors of the Holy City.
Above all from you, it is expected, venerable brothers, and in the highest degree, because, having disdained the light of this life, and having surmounted the concerns of your bodies, you have promised to despise the mercilessness of the world for the sake of God now and for ever; you have reinvigorated and satisfied yourselves with divine food, and have been instructed and confirmed by the precepts of the Lord, and after having consummated the Divine Mystery no one is to fear the battle, rather, being ready to receive the crown (of Martyrdom).
II Let them say prayers if it has not been possible to hear God’s service.
Moreover if a brother by reason of engagement for Oriental Christendom (and we do not doubt it may be often frequently) does not hear God’s service because of it,
- let him say thirteen Lord’s prayers for Matins;
- let him say seven Lord’s prayers for a single Canonical Hour;
- let him say nine Lord’s prayers for Vespers, as we set forth and approve unanimously and with free voice.
These fellow-soldiers indeed, engaged in such beneficial work, cannot always be present for Divine Office in time for Canonical Hours. But if it is possible, they should not neglect to pray at the fixed time, having previously accepted the Statutes in which it is written.
III What to do for dead brothers.
Indeed when one of the professed brothers takes off what is possible to rip to death, which calls everybody : we order chaplains and priests, who charitably and temporarily serve near the Supreme Lord, to offer to Christ, with purity of purpose, the Office and the Solemn High Mass for the soul of the one who has died.
Moreover those brothers present, spending the night in prayer for the dead brother, should say one hundred Lord’s prayers for the above-mentioned brother until the seventh day after his death : since the day in which the death of the brothers was announced and until the above-mentioned day the perfect number of hundred must be maintained in its entirety and with fraternal observance.
Again, with divine and merciful charity, we implore and, with pastoral authority order, that every day what was furnished to the living brother, as a duty, and because of necessity in order to be sustained, whether by food or beverage, an equal quantity should be given to a poor man, until the fortieth day. We prohibit any other offerings, which in the case of death of brothers, and during the solemnity of Easter and during other solemnities, the spontaneous poverty of Fellow-soldiers of Christ was used to offer to the Lord in a disorderly way.
IV Let chaplains have only food and dress.
We order indeed that oblations and all other alms, of any kind, should be given with diligent care to chaplains or to those who temporarily serve.
So, servants of Church, have only food and dress in accordance with your authority, and nothing more, except what Masters may have given to them spontaneously and with charity.
V Temporarly fellow-soldiers who may die.
There are indeed fellow-soldiers who are temporarily present with us in God’s House and in Solomon Temple. Therefore we pray and entreat you with ineffable supplication and we also order that, in case one among you may die, for the sake of God and with fraternal pity, let him too receive prayer for his soul and a poor man have maintenance for a period of seven days.
VI Let no professed brother do offering.
We have decreed, as above mentioned, that no professed brother should presume to give other offerings : but night and day, and with pure heart, let him remain strong in his profession, in order that he may be able to equal the most sage of prophets in his offer : I will take the chalice of salvation and in my death I will imitate the Lord’s death : as Christ has given his soul for me, so I am also ready to offer my soul for my brothers : this is the living host agreable to God.
VII Do not exceed in maintaining upright position.
We have heard with our ears from a sincere witness that some of you attend divine office always maintaining an upright position : we do not order that, but we vituperate it : indeed we order that, after having finished the psalm “Come and exult at the Lord” with the proper invitatory and hymn, let everyone sit down, both the brother who is strong and the one who is weak, so as to avoid scandal. While saying “Glory to the Father” at the end of every psalm, we ask you to rise from your seats, and with profound reverence bow towards the altar, reverencing the Holy Trinity as named therein. We have shown the weak brothers the way in which to bow down. So you maintain an upright position during the proclamation of the Gospel, the hymn “We praise thee, O God" and during all the “Lauds”, until the end of “Let us bless God”, when you cease standing : we also order to observe the same rule during the Matins of the Holy Virgin Mary.
VIII To reunite with brothers for meals.
We ask you to take meals together in a palace, or better in a refectory, where, in case something has become a necessity, out of ignorance of gestures, there is the opportunity to ask for it in a low voice and with privacy. So at all times ask for the things that are necessary, with humbleness and with reverence, for as the apostle says : "Eat your bread in silence”. And the psalmist says : I have put a check to my mouth, that is I have put a self-determination to hold my tongue to avoid sin, that is I will custody my mouth so as to not be a cause of scandal.
IX The reading.
During lunch and dinner there should be a holy reading. If we love God, we must wish to hear intensely the salutary words and the precepts of the Lord. The lector of lessons too enjoing your silence.
X The eating of meat.
During the week, except the case of Christmas Day, Easter or feast days, the Holy Virgin Mary or All Saints’ day, let meat be eaten three times: the habitual eating of meat must be considered as a serious corruption of the body. If the fasting falls on the day dedicated to "Mars" (Tuesday, the day when meat was served habitually), because if the eating of meat is forbidden, the day after it must be given you more abundantly. On the day of the Lord it seems proper that two courses be given to all professed brothers and to chaplains in honour of the Holy Resurrection. On the contrary the others, such as armigers and aggregates, should be satisfied with one, and let them be thankful for it.
XI How soldiers must have their meals.
It is suitable for soldiers generally to have their meals two by two, so that one may provide for the needs of the other, and so avoid the hardness of life or that a furtive abstinence take place during every meal. We properly judge that every soldier or brother should have an equal and equivalent measure of wine.
XII On the other days let two or three courses of legumes be sufficient.
On the other days, that is in second and fourth feria (week-day) as well as on Saturday we deem sufficient for all that two or three courses of legumes or other food which has been cooked be eaten along with bread: and moreover we order how to behave when one is not able to eat, other refreshment give him.
XIII With which food to feed on sixth feria.
We deem appropriate, during the sixth feria, that all be content with the eating of only one Lent-food out of reverence to the Passion, but taking into consideration the health of all, since All Saints’ Day until Easter, except for Christmas or Holy Mary’s or apostles’ festas. On the other days of the year, except in the case of general fasting, the course must be given twice.
XIV After meals let's always give thanks to God.
After lunch and dinner, and in the chapel if it is close by, or in the same place where the meal has been eaten if the chapel is not close by, we order that thanks be given, with a humble heart to Christ, Who is our supreme procurator, immediatly : after having separated not torn bread, we order that fragments must be distributed to servants and the poor with fraternal charity.
XV The tenth part of bread must be delivered to the almoner.
Although the prize of poverty, which is the Kingdom of Heaven, undoubtedly belongs to the poor : nevertheless we order you, whom Christian faith acknowledges to be part of them (of the poor), to deliver the tenth part of bread to your almoner, to be given to the poor.
XVI Let supper be according to the Master’s opinion.
When the sun rises from the oriental part of the sky and sinks to the dark Avernus, and after having heard the sound, as it is in the habit of every region, you all should go to Compline, however, it is our wish that you have a general supper before. Then we dispose this supper according to instructions and the power of the Master, as when it is his will it may be done by water ; and when he should dispose with favour it will be done by competently diluted wine. Indeed this must not arrive to surfeit and it must not be made in luxury, but must remain sparingly ; in fact we observe that sages may apostatize (abandon the rule) too.
XVII After Compline all remain in silence.
When Compline is finished it is necessary to retire to sleep. Do not speak to brothers coming out from Compline, except for an impelling need ; what is to be said to one’s squire should be done quietly. If you, who are coming from Compline, have a very urgent need of military activity, or of your House’s situation, because the day was not sufficient, or it is necessary that the Master has to speak to some brothers, or to one who is encharged with the command of the House as Master, so we order that this may happen ; as it is written : “In long speech sin enters”. And in another part it is also written : “Death and life are in the tongue’s power”. In this speech we forbid all licentiousness, useless words, and what makes one laugh : and to you, who are enjoying the bed, in case someone has said something foolish to you, we order you to say prayers with humility and devote purity.
XVIII Tired soldiers do not get up for Matins.
We do not approve of tired soldiers rising for Matins : but, with the approval of the Master, or of whoever received the charge from the Master, let them rest and sing the thirteen Lord’s prayers as is established (see point II) like their mind may concorde with their voice, as is said by the prophet : “Sing psalms to the Lord with wisdom” and also : “In the sight of Angels I will sing psalms to you”. All this must always be approved of by the Master’s authority.
XIX Let the community of meals among brothers be preserved.
It is written in the Divine page: They divided among themselves, as it was necessary for everyone. Therefore we do not say that it may be acceptation of people, but illness has to be considered. When one has few needs, let him thank God, and not be sad; he who needs, let him be humble because of his infirmity, and not exalt himself by mercy, so all limbs may rest. We also prohibit that no one may observe an immoderate abstinence, but they constantly lead a common life.
XX Quality and manner of dressing.
We order that one's dress must always be of one colour only, for example white or black, or, as it is said, grey. To all professed soldiers, in winter and in summer, we grant, if it is possible, white dress, so that they, who after a dark life, recognize they have become reconcilied with their Creator, by means of a white and transparent life. What white, except complete chastity? Chastity is certainty of mind and soundness of body. Indeed every soldier, if he had not persevered in chastity, could not reach Eternal life and see God: as St. Paul states: be at peace with everyone, and be chaste, without which no one may see the Lord. So that if one may have this style of dressing one must be void of arrogance and superfluousness; we order that all have such qualities so that everyone may be able, without clamour, to dress and to undress, to put on and to remove his boots. The Procurator of this ministry, with watchful care, should take care to provide for those who need a dress, they should not receive one which is too large or too short; this must be in accordance with the correct size of each brother. They, who receive a new dress, let them give the old one back immediately, to put away in the store-room, or where the brother who has the charge had decided, so that it may be used by armigers or aggregates, or given to the poor.
XXI Servants do not wear white dress, that is “palia”.
We resolutely disapprove of what was done in God's House and in the fellow-soldiersTemple without the discretion and without the decision of the common Chapter, and we order that it is radically eliminated as if it were really a vice. Once upon a time servants and armigers wore white dress, therefore heavy damage derived.
There rose indeed in Ultramontane parts some false brothers, married, and others, who said they belonged to the Temple, whereas they were of the world. These people caused many outrages and damage to the Military Order, pretending to be professed brothers and being presumptous, priding themselves, stirred up many scandals.
Let them always wear black; in case it could not be available, let them have the ones that are in the province in which they live, or what may be found there, that is similar to the simple and uniform colour, that is “burella” (grey).
XXII Professed fellow-soldiers wear white dress only.
It is not allowed for anyone to wear a snow-white tunic, or white palia, except those above-mentioned soldiers.
XXIII Only lamb-skin must be used.
We have decided by common consent that no professed brother may have skin with long fur and longly worn or something similar, which is used for the body, also to cover himself up, except of lamb and ram skin.
XXIV Let old garments be given to squires.
The Procurator or the brother responsible for used clothing should give with great care any old dress to squires and aggregates, and, sometimes, to the poor, acting with fidelity and equity.
XXV Who desires best things, let him have worse ones.
In the case of a professed brother, as is due to him, or because he is proud, should like to have a dress, better than the one he deserves, then because of this, he should be presumed to have the humblest things among us.
XXVI Let's respect quality and quantity of dress.
It is necessary to observe the quantity of cloth in accordance with the size of the body and the width of dress : let him who delivers dressing pay attention to that.
XXVIILet the dress giver preserve above all equality.
Let the Procurator, with fraternal intuition, consider the length, as above mentioned with the same attention, so that the eye of whisperers or slanderers do not presume to notice anything : and in all these things, may he humbly meditate on God’s reward.
XXVIII Hair uselessness.
It is well that all brothers, above all the professed ones, should have tidy hair that may be considered regular in front and behind ; and for his beard and mustache the same rule should be respected, in order that superficiality or vices of frivolity cannot be shown.
About spurs and necklaces.
It is clear that spurs and necklaces are a question of gentility. As this fact is recognized by all as abominable, we prohibit these and deny the consent to everyone to be in possession of them, and we even desire that these be not present.
To those who lend temporary service we do not permit them to have either spurs, or immoderate length of dress, and as such, we absolutely prohibit it.
To those who serve the Supreme Creator it is highly necessary to have interior and exterior neatness, as His own words attest, saying: Be pure, as I am pure.
Number of horses and squires.
Each soldier is allowed to own three horses, as the mark of poverty of God’s House and of the Solomon Temple do not permit an increase over this amount, except with the master’s permission.
Let nobody strike the squire who gratuitously serves.
We allow each fellow-soldier to have, by the same reason, only one squire. But if gratuitously and charitably that squire belongs to a fellow-soldier, it is neither permitted to flagellate him, nor to beat him for any guilt.
In which manner must those who temporarily serve be admitted.
We order that all soldiers who wish to serve Jesus Christ temporarily, with purity of mind, to faithfully buy horses appropriate for their daily engagement, as well as weapons and all that is necessary.
We have also judged that it is good and useful to value horses. In writing then, let the price of each horse be recorded, so that it cannot be forgotten. Let all that is necessary for the soldiers: from horses, squiry and other needs, be purchased with the faculty of the mansion, with fraternal charity.
If in the mean-while for whatever reason a soldier should lose his horses while in the service of his master, it is possible that the mansion will furnish him with others. When the moment for repatriating has arrived, let the soldier concede half of the price out of divine love, and if he likes, let him receive the other part of the price from the community of brothers.
Let nobody act according to his will.
It is convenient to these soldiers, who estimate nothing more dear than Christ, that in order of the service according to which they are professed, and on account of the glory of supreme beatitude or for fear of Gehenna, they continuously obey the master. Therefore it is necessary that immediately, in case something will be ordered by the master or by him who received a mandate by the master, and without delay, as it may be divinely commanded, there will be no default on doing it. Of those indeed the same verity says: “by the hearing of his ear he obeyed me”.
If it is allowed to go, without the order of the master, to a lonely place.
We implore, and steadily order, that the generous fellow-soldiers who have renounced their will, and all others who serve during vows, to not leave without the master’s permission, or of the one from whom he has received the mandate, to lonely places, except at night, when it is permitted to go to the Sepulchre, and to the other stations which are inside the walls of the Holy City.
If it is allowed to go alone.
Those who need to travel should not begin a trip, neither in the daytime nor at night hours, without a guardian, that is a soldier or a fellow-soldier.
Indeed, no soldier or squire or anyone else, after having been enrolled in the army, should be allowed to go, without permission, as is above mentioned, to see the entrance-halls of other soldiers, or to go there in order to speak to someone.
Therefore, we wisely affirm that in the House of God, no one acts as if the property were his own; rather, let all act in accordance to the property which is shared by all according to the orders of the master, so that he may imitate the Lord when he says: I have not come to do my will, but of whom who has sent me.
Let nobody ask on his own what is necessary to him.
We order that it is written as proper, amongst the others, this custom, and with every consideration we confirm that it is to avoid searching for vice in it. No fellow-soldier must ask to have a horse personally, or a mount or weapons. In which other manner therefore?
If his sickness or the weaknes of his horses, or the scarcity of his weapons have been recognized, that so advancing it could be a common damage: let him go to the master or to whom is in the proper ministry after the master, and let explain to him the matter with sincerity and purity: indeed the matter has to be solved by the master or by his procurator.
Bits and spurs.
We do not wish that gold or silver, which are signs of wealth, appear in neither bits, or breast-bands, or spurs, nor in harnesses, nor is it allowed for a professed brother to buy them.
In case old harnesses have been received as a gift, the gold and silver must be coloured in such manner that they do not appear as arrogant in comparison with others. In case those are a new gift, the master should decide what to do.
Do not put covering on spears and shields.
Let coverings not be put on spears and shields, as according to our opinion this is not advantageous but rather harmful.
The Master’s permission.
To the master only it is allowed to give horses or weapons or other things to anyone, to those he considers the request to be reasonable.
Sack and trunk.
Sack and trunk with padlock are not allowed : in such manner these must be shown, as it is not possible to be in possession of these without the master’s permission or of the one who has received such task in the mansion.
Procurators are excluded from this rule as well as others who live in other provinces, and the master himself is excluded.
About written authorization.
It is not allowed for a brother to receive, or give, anything from his relatives, nor from anyone else, including another brother, without the permission of the master or the procurator.
After a brother has received permission from the master, let those items received be registered. In case that something is sent to him from his relatives, he is not allowed to receive it, if it has not been reportered to the master. In this rule the master and procurators are not included.
The tale of own faults.
It is known that each idle word generates sin; what will they say face to face to the strict judge, ostentatiously, about their own faults?
The prophet truthfully says that, if it is necessary to abstain from good speeches for the sake of silence, the more it is necessary to abstain from bad words which may bring on the punishment of sin. Indeed we forbid professed brothers to discuss amongst one another the sins of the past, or the pleasure of the flesh with miserable women (so is the Latin rule) or other things while they were yet living the secular life.
In the event that a brother has heard another telling of such things, it is appropriate that the brother be reminded of the need for silence, and if need, this can be done under obedience, for it is not wise "to offer the heart to the oil-seller" (it is not wise to add oil, that is new combustible, or excitability, to an already suffering heart).
Quest and acceptance.
If a brother receives something without really needing it, let him give it to the master, or to the steward; if the giver of the gift, a friend or relative, desires that the gift be not used by others, it is best that the gift be not received, until he has discussed the matter with the master and received permission. If the gift is used by others it should not be matter. This rule does not included gifts given to the administrators who have been granted a special ministry to care for the needs of others.
About food sacks on horses.
It is useful to all that this order, established by us, be respected without exception. Let no brother presume to manufacture food sacks by flax or wool; rather, let these be made with unbleached cloth only.
Let nobody dare change or ask something.
Let no one presume to exchange personal items with each other, without first having obtained the permission of master, nor to ask for personal items from others, except amongst each other, providing that the item is a small one.
Let nobody capture a bird with a bird, neither act by decoy.
We judge with common sentence that nobody can capture a bird with a bird. It is indeed not convenient to stick to religion while retaining the pleasures of this world, but willingly hearing the Lord’s Commandments, frequently applying to prayers, confessing their faults to God with tears and daily groan in prayer.
Let no professed brother keep company with a man who operates with a hawk or with any other bird.
Let nobody hit a wild beast by bow or by arbalest.
It is convenient to walk with pious attitude, with simplicity and humbleness, without laughing in a loud voice or arguing or using harsh words. It is forbidden for a professed brother to enter into a wooded area with a bow or arbalest, or to throw arrows. If a brother chooses to do this, let no one follow him except to save him for such reckless pagan attitudes. Furthermore, let no one cry out like a wild dog, nor screech with a loud voice; nor incite his horse in order to catch a wild beast.
Let the lion always be hit.
One can be sure that you may be asked to offer your life for your brother as a way to cleanse the world from incredulous men and from those who may choose to diminuish the Son of Mary. We have read about how the lion surrounds it's prey when it is ready to be devoured. We ask any brother to use his hands against all, and all brothers to use their hands against the lion and hit it (similitude between the wild animal and Devil. In ancient times Persian lions met in the Middle East and the Persian lion was still found in Iraq up to the 19th century. The big forests of Lebanonand the Negeb desert seemed to have many lions in Biblical times).
Listem to judgements on what is inquired about you.
We know that the persecutors of the Holy Church are many and increasingly more and more cruelly discredit it and all the ones working to disquiet those who are working to discredit it.
We likewise request that the Council’s sentence that was made with consideration, which states that if someone, in the Oriental Region, or elsewhere for that matter, should inquire something of you, we order that you hear the sentence which has be given by faithful and truthful judges and do at once what has been judged.
Let everyone observe this same rule in each other case.
We order that this rule be always observed about things that are taken away from you.
It is right that professed brothers have land and men.
We believe that by Divine Providence you begin this new kind of religion in the Holy Land, that is soldiering joined together with religion, in such a way that religion may go on armed with soldiering and may, without fault, hit the enemy.
Indeed we rightly judge that you, who are called Temple's soldiers, on account of remarkable and special merit of probity, may have a house, land, men, peasants and justly rule them : what is in particular manner established is due to you.
Have a particular care for patients.
It is necessary to attentively care for brothers who are ill, as it is serving Christ as we serve them : the evangelic counsel saying I have been infirm and you have visited me, must be remembered. They have to be patiently beared, as without any doubt is possible, by means of them, to receive a higher remuneration.
Always give to those who are ill all that is necessary.
We order to those who work with the ill to give them, with special attention and care, what is necessary for their illnesses, in accordance with what is possible within the house, the possibility of the mansion, as for instance, be that meat of any type, bird meat and other, until they are restored to health.
Let nobody excite another's anger.
Take the greatest care so that no one presumes to excite another's anger : indeed propinquity and Divine fraternity are enjoyed by both the poor and the mighty.
In which manner married brothers must be received.
We allow you to receive married brothers in this manner, in case they call benefit and partecipation to your fraternity, as both concede a part of their substance and what they will purchase, after their death, let them be delivered to the Chapter's community : and in the mean-while let them lead an honest life, and let them try to be well-behaved with brothers, but never wear snow-white dress and white chlamys (mantle).
In case the husband dies before wife, let him give his part to the brothers : and the wife take her maintenance from the other part. Indeed we consider unjust that married brothers may reside in the same house as the brothers who have promised chastity to God.
Do not have sisters any more.
To live together with sisters it is very dangerous : the old enemy, owing to female companionship, chased many people out of the straight and narrow path to Paradise.
Therefore, very dear brothers, it is no longer allowed to maintain this custom.
Let not Temple's brothers contact with excomunicates.
This fact, brothers, is to avoid and to fear. It is about some Christ's soldier who contacts, individualy and in public, with an excomunicated person, or he presumes to receive the excomunicated's things, as excommunication be not similar to maranatha anathema (Apocalypse, 22-20).
But in case he is interdict only, it is allowed to have contact with him, and receive his things charitably.
In which manner secular soldiers must be received.
In case a soldier, coming out of the perdition mass (this sentence means he has lost his soul and he is already damned ; we know that theologians say it is not correct, but so is the Latin rule) or an other secular, wishing to renounce to the world, would choose our way of life, let him not immediately be received, for as St. Paul says, let him test whether his call is really from God, and if so, then allow him to enter.
Therefore you should read the rule in his presence : and if he believes he can diligently comply with the demands of this eminent rule, then, if the master and the brothers let him, with purity of heart voice his request to all those present.
The brother requesting entrance is to be judged by his honesty and the decision rests on with the master.
Do not call all brothers to secret council.
We order that not all brothers have the right to be convened to secret council; rather only those whom the master will have considered apt and providential to council. When he would discuss important questions, as for instance common land, or to discuss the same agenda, or to receive a brother; then it is suitable to convoke all the congregation, if the master thinks so, after having heard the opinions of the whole council. That which is most useful to the master and what he considers most opportune, then that must be done.
Let them pray in silence.
We order that what is normal for both the body and the soul, brothers may pray either standing or sitting down. Which ever is appropriate, must be done with reverence and simplicity and without noise so as not to bother another brother at prayer.
Let brothers receive servant's faith.
We know that many people from different provinces, both armigers and squires, who with fervent mind for the salvation of their souls, wish to temporarily be bound to our mansion. It is useful that you receive their faith, so that the ancient enemy does not order to them, while serving God, something indecently and furtively or suddenly dissuade them from good purposes.
The young, untill they are children, let them not be received amongst Temple's brothers.
Although the rule of Holy Fathers allows to receive youth into a congregation, we do not consider it wise to have to burden you with this.
He who wishes to give perpetually his son, or relative, to military religion, is to support him until he is old enough to fight for himself in order to eliminate Christ's enemies from the Holy Land (we are sorry about this sentence, in accordance with what the Holy Pope has said, but so is written in the Latin rule).
According to the rule, the father or parents are to introduce the youth to the brothers and request from them the admittance of the youth. It is better in childhood that no oath be taken. It is better to do so when he is an adult so as to allow him to retire in a not clamourous manner (it may happen, as young people do).
Let the old always be venerated.
It is suitable that the old, with pious consideration and according to their health, be both accepted and honoured. By no means is feebleness of one's strength to be used against him, neverthless the authority of rule must be saved.
About brothers who leave towards different provinces.
Brothers who turn their steps towards different provinces, however much strength they may have, let them be bound to observe the rule in food and beverage and in other things, and let them live in blameless behaviour, as they may have a good testimony by those who are from the outside : let them not stain their religion purpose either by word or by act, but above all let them offer, to whom they have met, an instance and a substance of wisdom and good deed.
He, near whom they shall have decided to lodge, let him have a good reputation : and, if possible, in the house of the host there must always be a candle, so that the dark enemy does not give death, God forbid!
When they could hear about gathering together not excommunicated soldiers, we say that they have to go there, not being worried about secular interest, but rather about the eternal salvation of their souls.
To brothers going overseas, with the hope of being taken, we recommend to receive with this convention those who would like to join the Military Order perpetually: let them both present themselves to the bishop of that province, and let the prelate hear the will of whom is asking this. After having heard the request, the brother will send him to the master and the brothers who are in the Temple which is in Jerusalem. In case his life is honest and worthy of this union, whether master and brothers think it is good, let be him mercifully accepted. In case he dies in the meanwhile, because of work and fatigue, let all benefits and fraternity of Poor Fellow-soldiers of Christ be acknowledged to him.
Let food be distributed in equal quantity.
We deem that this also must be heeded in a suitable and respectful manner, that all professed brothers have food distributed to them in equal measure according to what is possible in the location.
While it is not helpful to personally receive more than another, if needed, more should be to consider in case of illness.
Let soldiers have Temple's tithes.
We believe that having renounced to all wealth given to you, you have to be subject to spontaneous poverty, and we therefore believe the following form should be used.
If the bishop of the church, to whom the tithe is due, should have given it to you charitably, we believe that he must give you tithes that are now in the possession of the church, with the consent of the chapter. If a layman takes possession of this tithe, or takes it away, in a condemnable manner, from his patrimony, and acknowledging his fault, he should let you have the same: in accordance with the discerment of the one who presides, it may be done without the consent of the chapter.
About lesser and heavy faults.
If a brother has made a mistake, such as speaking, acting or such, he himself should confess his fault to the master, binding himself to apologize for his mistake. About lesser faults, as is the custom, let him do an appropriate penance. In case anyone has not confessed, and the master has come to know the fault through another brother, let him be subjected to a greater discipline and make amends.
In case fault is more serious, let the individual be expelled from the brothers' fraternity, not even eating with them in the same refectory, but rather taking his meals alone. This decision must always depend on the master.
About which fault a brother must be expelled.
Above all it is necessary to provide that no brother, may be powerful or powerless, strong or weak, will exalt himself, and pride himself, and defend his fault and may remain undisciplined : but, in case he does not want to make amends, let him be given a more severe correction. In case he should not correct himself by pious admonitions and by prayers, but he continues to exalt himself in pride : then, according to the apostole's saying, let him be eradicated from the pious flock : take away evil from you ; it is necessary that the sick sheep is turned away from the society of faithful brothers. Moreover the master who must hold baton and rod (that is baton, with which he may support the weakness of other strength, and rod by which he may hit, with the zeal of rectitude, vices of those who become erroneous) with the advice of the Patriarch and with a spiritual consideration, let him study what must be done, so that, as Blessed Maximus says, the free mildness must neither approve of the sinner's arrogance, nor excessive severity must not recall from error whoever makes mistakes.
Since the solemnity of Easter till All Saint's day let a linen shirt be
With the consideration of the stifling heat of the Oriental Region, we deem correct that from the solemnity of Easter until the feast of All Saint's Day, a single linen shirt is said to be appropriate.This should be considered a privilege, not a right. During other seasons a woolen shirt should be worn.
How many and which clothes are necessary in bed.
We think by common consent that a brother who sleeps in a single bed, except if a serious reason or necessity crops, he must have bed-linen according to the master's assignment : we think indeed that it is sufficient for each one a pailasse, a pillow and a blanket. He who is lacking in one of these, let him take a mat and every time he will be allowed to benefit from a linen blanket, that is a cloth : let him sleep dressed in a shirt and always sleep wearing boots. While brothers are sleeping, till morning, an oil-lamp must not be missing.
It is necessary to avoid complaining.
We order you, by divine admonition, to avoid, as plague, emulations, envies, spite, complaining, murmuring, depreciations.
Let everyone engage himself, with watchful mind, to charge or reprove his brother, but let him recall the apostole's saying : be neither an accuser nor a defamer in the people.
When you have known that a brother has sinned, in peace and fraternal pity, according to the Lord's precept, let him be admonished when he is alone : and in case he has not listened to you move to him with another brother : and in case he has despised you both, reproach him publicly in a meeting.
They who calumniate others are suffering great blindness ; they who do not avoid spite are in great unhappiness ; and by this fact they are plunged into the ancient iniquity of the astute enemy.
Let women's kisses be avoided.
We think that it is dangerous for every religious man to fix their eyes on a women for a lengthy period of time : therefore a brother must not kiss a woman, be she a widow or unmarried; nor his mother, sister, nor a woman friend, nor any other woman.
Therefore let Christ's army be free from the danger which often times tempts man; with pure conscience and freedom of life let every soldier of Christ be in the sight of God.
So the rule of Temple's Knights is fixed, from which our Latin and the French editions take rise.
Questa traduzione è stata da me effettuata in occasione della preparazione del Convegno tenuto in Bocca di Magra presso il Convento dei Carmelitani nel settembre dell’anno 2000, su richiesta del Reggente della Associazione dei Fratelli Cruciferi di Spino d’Adda (Fratres Cruciferi-s) Fabio Giovanni Giannini, utilizzando il testo latino pubblicato nel suo libro LA REGOLA DEL TEMPIO – Editrice New Style, pubblicata nell’anno 1999 a Spino d’Adda.
Essendo stato associato di questa associazione, debbo riconoscenza a Fabio Giovanni Giannini per avermi introdotto in questo settore della storia del Medioevo, la cui conoscenza mi ha aiutato molto nella valutazione delle vicende storiche attuali.
Il testo suddetto non poteva tenere conto dell’uscita dall’Archivio Segreto Vaticano delle pergamene studiate dalla Dot.ssa Barbara Frale e delle successive sue pubblicazioni in materia.