Sovereign Magistral

Titles of Office of the Templar Round Table:

A Full Restoration of Authentic Titles of the Templar Order

 

 

The restored Order of the Temple of Solomon, as the direct continuation of the 12th century historical institution of the original Knights Templar, preserves and practices the most ancient traditions of Chivalry, strictly in accordance with the sacred principles of its founding ancestors, enshrined in public customary law, as evidenced in the historical record.

 

“Holy Grail at the Round Table” (1475 AD), depicting 15 Grand Officers, in Biblioteque Nationale de France, in “Lancelot and the Holy-Grail” manuscript, MS-FR-116F / Folio-610V

Despite many common misconceptions popularized by 18th century and later private fraternities, there are no different types or levels of Knights and Dames, and hierarchies are not a part of service in Chivalry. All of the traditional military-styled Titles of Chivalry, including the famous Grand Officer titles, are actually not “ranks” or “degrees” of knighthood, but rather are simply and properly Titles of Office, only used to identify a person serving in an official Office of Duty.

 

True to its medieval roots, the Order of the Temple of Solomon preserves its founding principles of Chivalry, which are based upon the ancient Arthurian “Round Table” concept, without any hierarchy of manufactured “ranks” or “degrees”:

 

All Templars are equal, and all are Brothers and Sisters in Faith, sharing the same highest level of sacred knowledge. No members are artificially held back, none are higher or lower than others in Chivalry, and every Templar participates in full and equal membership, with open access to the highest levels of the collective Templar heritage. As a result, all come to the Round Table as colleagues for the higher purposes and sacred humanitarian missions of the Order.

 

In keeping with these timeless principles, the modern Templar Order does not use any system of hierarchy for the chivalric aspect of the Order. Most titles of authority are used only as necessary for the governmental aspect of the Order, and any actual ranks are used only by career military or law enforcement officers serving in its Ministry of Security of the Order as a sovereign non-territorial Principality of statehood. Outside of the governmental sphere, only certain traditional titles are used in Chivalry, only as Titles of Office related to actively serving in a particular Office of Duty.

 

Authentic Templar Round Table Principles

 

Many of the authentic Templar Titles of Office were restored from the constitutional charter and rule of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta (SMOM), founded ca. 1099 AD, which shares much common and parallel history with the Templar Order, and is recognized by authorities of chivalric, nobiliary and international law as a reliable and direct legal precedent for the sovereign status and legal standing of the Templar Order [1] [2] [3].

 

“Holy Grail at the Round Table” (1470 AD), depicting 20 Grand Officers, in Biblioteque Nationale de France, manuscript MS-FR-112-3-F5R

Those and other Templar Titles were also restored from principles, elements or clarifications in the Temple Rule of 1129 AD [4], together with and supported by other relevant academic sources of customary international law as proven by the historical record.

 

The Temple Rule establishes the core Round Table principle, that “No person shall be elevated among you… In such manner all the members will be in peace” (Rule 34), and forbids any Templar “to promote himself gradually” (Rule 46). Just as the rules on Templar uniforms declare “We command everyone to have the same” (Rule 18), so in the Grand Mastery the voice and vote of every officer at the Round Table must be treated the same.

 

The Templar Patron Saint Bernard de Clairvaux, in his speech In Praise of the New Knighthood (ca. 1136 AD), emphasized the Round Table principles of egalitarian meritocracy of the Templar Order:

 

There is no distinction of persons among them, and deference is shown to merit rather than to noble blood.  They rival one another in mutual consideration, and they carry one another’s burdens, thus fulfilling the law of Christ.” (Chapter 4) [5]

 

Accordingly, all opinions at the Round Table must be given full freedom of expression, with equal weight for due and fair consideration, and no one shall be overshadowed by reason of a mere title or specialty of another.

 

Templar principles of the Arthurian Round Table are also enshrined in the restored and authentic Titles of Office, reflecting traditional leadership roles, and representing only customary governmental “portfolios” of concentration, while avoiding any artificial hierarchy.

 

Authentic Round Table principles are also preserved through a careful diversity and balance of all positions, such that all officers are in service both to the Order and also to each other, and each have an area of concentration while also sharing general responsibilities collectively.

 

Avoiding hierarchy, the authentic definitions of Templar Titles of Office do not assume that a “Chief” of a portfolio of concentration would “control” all other officers supporting that portfolio. By these restored definitions, the Grand Mastery remains free to call upon all Templar officers separately or in parallel, avoiding any “bottlenecks” or “log jams” of work flow, and preventing many other typical problems by suppressing competing “egos”.

 

This reflects another key Round Table principle of “Open-Handed Leadership”, that first and foremost, leaders must provide active support to those “on the ground” and “in the field”, mostly leading by example, and allowing other hard working talents to shine and also lead the way on their shared Quests. This is the true Templar leadership model of “Support Not Control”, in divine chivalric service to humanity.

 

As a result of the above Round Table principles, it is not possible for any authentic Templar Titles of Office to be arranged and listed in any particular order, as none have priority nor precedence over any others, such that any lists can only be presented with an arbitrary sequence of titles.

 

Presented below are lists of the proper Titles of Office of Templar Chivalry, with verified correct definitions of their true roles, carefully restored from the historical record to be genuine and authentic to the original 12th century Order of the Temple of Solomon. The list includes only those titles which have the most relevance in modern society, and does not include various additional customary or honourary positions which may also be held.

 

Offices of the Templar Grand Mastery

 

Arthurian Round Table (11th century) replica of King Arthur’s Round Table artifact, naming 24 Grand Officers, in the Great Hall of Winchester Cathedral, England

Grand Mastery – Sovereign Council Round Table – The term “Grand Mastery” (Old English “Grand Magistry”), named for being governed by the Sovereign Grand Master, is the “Sovereign Council” of Grand Officers as the upper house of Parliament, exercising supervisory governance over the “Government Council” of Ministers as the lower house of Parliament [6]. The Grand Mastery thus serves as the traditional Arthurian Round Table, responsible for wisdom and guidance (Temple Rule, 36), upholding the principles of Chivalry in all governmental affairs of the Order.

 

The Grand Mastery is authentically comprised of the Grand Master plus “thirteen electors” of the Round Table (Temple Rule, 207, 215-216), who are Grand Officers designated by various traditional portfolios, supplemented by at least 4 available constitutional positions for other customary Grand portfolios. The total Grand Mastery thus may consist of 18 seats at the Round Table.

 

Grand Officer – Member of Crown Round Table – The term “Grand Officer” is the generic appellation for a member of the Grand Mastery as the Sovereign Council upper house of Parliament, who holds a seat and a vote at the Round Table with the Grand Master. Grand Officers exercise supervisory governance over the Ministers of the Government Council lower house of Parliament, and over all Crown Officers who serve at the will of the Grand Master, none of whom have any authority on the Grand Mastery.

 

Grand Officers are designated by a customary governmental portfolio indicating an area of concentration, while also sharing general responsibilities in combination, as a mandate for group collaboration supporting other portfolios. (Grand Officers are different and separate from unrelated “Grand Priors”, a traditional non-governmental Title of Chivalric Office for regional delegates who are only Crown Officers).

 

Grand Master – Head of State for Crown and Church – The Grand Master is the Sovereign Head of State of the Templar non-territorial Principality, democratically elected by the Round Table (Temple Rule, 207, 215-218), established for life (Temple Rule, 198, 200), governing upon the advice and counsel of the Grand Mastery (Temple Rule, 36), equivalent to a national “President” as “Commander in Chief” (Temple Rule, 39, 41), with discretionary emergency powers in matters affecting Justice or the integrity and state security of the Order (Temple Rule, 47, 73).

 

The Sovereign is also the Master Teacher of “Disciples” (Temple Rule, 7) of the “Pontificate of the Temple of Solomon” (Temple Rule, 8) as the Crown authority for ecclesiastical sovereignty of “divine service… dressed with the crown” of the Holy Spirit as the “pastoral authority” of the Order (Temple Rule, 9, 62), governing the Templar “servants of the Church… of Our Lady of God” in religious affairs (Temple Rule, 64).

 

Grand Chancellor – Chief Diplomat as Secretary of State – The Grand Chancellor (from Old English “Chancery” meaning shared official authorities) assists the Grand Master as Secretary of State, managing the Chancery of all foreign affairs and diplomatic missions of the Order, representing the Grand Mastery to all official or strategic third parties. The Grand Chancellor also organizes and mobilizes various offices and agencies for sovereign and foreign affairs, according to the directives of the Grand Master. [7]

 

Grand Seneschal – Crown Secretary of Internal Affairs – The Grand Seneschal assists the Prince Grand Master as Steward acting on behalf of the Princely House of the Crown [8], thus directly representing the Grand Master, with delegated authority for dispensing Justice and delegated command over sovereign missions as “Lieutenant” of the Grand Master [9]. The Grand Seneschal “convenes and presides” over Grand Mastery and Government Council meetings [10], and generally serves as “Secretary of Internal Affairs” for internal administration and coordination of the Grand Mastery and the Government Council, presenting subjects for consideration, and providing records of meetings and decisions [11].

 

Grand Alderman – Head of Community Development – The Grand Alderman (Old English for “Elder-man”) is the Magistral administrator representing the Grand Mastery, assigned to local communities for management of relations and community development, also with Judicial authority as a traditional “Elder” guiding the communities [12], thereby assisting and facilitating communities and related groups for engagement with and forming authorized Branches of the Order under Templar Patronage.

 

Grand Preceptor – Head of Educational Training – The Grand Preceptor is responsible for representing the Grand Mastery, by promoting and preserving authentic and approved Templar teachings from the official knowledge base of the restoration of the Order, through development, support and supervision of educational Preceptories as Branches of the Order [13]. The Grand Preceptor is the senior educational director for all research, publications, teaching materials and training programs of the Order, on spiritual “precepts of Sacred Truth” [14], religious “moral and ecclesiastical” matters [15], and general rules of “conduct of action” such as Templar Skills Training in chivalric and nobiliary culture [16].

 

Grand Steward – Chief of Crown Officers Service – The Grand Steward (named for the Biblical concept of “stewardship”), as a caretaker of Templar culture and traditions, directs and manages Crown Officers and other support staff assisting the Grand Mastery, traditionally also overseeing food service arrangements for large events and gatherings of the Order, and arranging or providing safekeeping or management of inventory of official Regalia, governmental badges and materials involving official seals of the Order [17].

 

Grand Sentinel – Chief Moderator of Communications – The Grand Sentinel (Old English “guardian”), as a spiritual and moral watch-guard of Templar values and traditions, oversees and participates in membership activities and communications with the Order, as a moderator and mentoring supervisor, guarding against and alerting the Grand Mastery to any potential infiltration by subversive elements, or to any negative behaviour presenting a risk or an indication of misconduct potentially requiring mediation, intervention, correction, discipline or defense [18].

 

Grand Registrar – Chief of Office of Crown Registrar – The Grand Registrar assists the Grand Mastery, directing the institutional system of membership registration, managing member participation and interactions with the Order, and overseeing the Office of the Crown Registrar. The Grand Registrar also serves as keeper of records of the Order, including registries of constitutional and legal materials, official acts and resolutions of the Grand Mastery and Government Council.

 

Grand Chamberlain – Head of Events and Gatherings – The Grand Chamberlain (from Old English “Chambers” meaning “offices”) is symbolically in charge of arranging and managing reception rooms, meeting halls, offices and lodgings of the Grand Mastery and Government Council, traditionally serving as the Chief Host arranging facilities and providing hospitality for official visitors and guests, organizing events, gatherings and pilgrimages, and supervising management of offices of the Order [19].

 

Grand Chaplain – Head of Christian Faith Ministry – The Grand Chaplain is the Senior Templar Clergy facilitating and promoting the experience of Chivalry as a form of “Holy Communion” (Temple Rule, 2), as a “religion by armed knighthood” (Temple Rule, 57), supporting, instructing and overseeing the “Disciples” (Temple Rule, 7) of the “Pontificate of the Temple of Solomon” (Temple Rule, 8), representing and exercising ecclesiastical sovereignty of “divine service… dressed with the crown” of the Holy Spirit as the “pastoral authority” of the Order (Temple Rule, 9, 62), and assisting the Grand Master in governing the Templar “servants of the Church… of Our Lady of God” in religious affairs (Temple Rule, 64).

 

Templars are forbidden to give Confession to any Priest other than a Templar Chaplain (Temple Rule, 45, 269), without a special dispensation from the Grand Master (Temple Rule, 73).  The historical record confirms that Templar Chaplains “alone were vested with” exclusive authority to administer “sacerdotal orders [sacraments], to minister to the spiritual needs of the Order”, especially for hearing Confessions and giving absolution for sins [20] [21]. The Grand Chaplain thus provides independent “Ordinations of [Templar] Clergy”, which were required to “be received [accepted]” by Vatican Bishops [22].

 

Grand Alchemist – Head of Social and Societal Alchemy – The Grand Alchemist is a position unique and authentic to the Templar Order, as the ancient Solomonic “spiritual alchemy” of balancing and mobilizing sacred energies was a central theme of the Arthurian legends of the Holy Grail, written by the Knights Templar themselves [23] [24]. The ancient “Egyptian art” of “Alchemy” developed as a metaphorical concept among early Christians, passed through Arabian mystics and “Persian adepts” who brought it to Europe, as a “philosophical principle” of “transmutation”. The word comes from the Arabic prefix “Al” plus the Egyptian hieroglyph “Khmi” meaning fertile soil, thus representing the nurturing transformation of seeds into mature life-supporting results. [25]

 

The Grand Alchemist assists and guides the Grand Mastery, and mobilizes the membership of the Order, specializing in the authentic Templar arts of “spiritual alchemy” on a larger scale at the higher level of society, as “social alchemy”, also transforming “individual alchemy” into greater “societal alchemy”, all for balancing spiritual energies as applied to human civilization as a whole, serving the higher purpose of nurturing social transformation for the benefit of humanity.

 

Grand Commander – Chief of Missions and Branches – The Grand Commander assists the Grand Master in fulfilling the chivalric missions of the Order, in the supervision of Commanderies and Priories, and of Knights and Dames, reports to the Grand Mastery on the state and life of the Order, and traditionally provides organization of pilgrimages. While serving the Grand Master as Commander over the chivalric aspect (not the governmental aspect) of the Order with no authority over the Grand Mastery, the Grand Commander serves as “Interim Lieutenant” of the Grand Master and thus Acting Head of State in the case of incapacity or retirement of the Grand Master [26].

 

Grand Marshal – Chief of Membership Activities – The Grand Marshal traditionally “presided in the [Nobiliary] Court of Chivalry” of the Grand Mastery and the Princely House of the Grand Master, primarily as Chief of Protocol administering the proceedings of ceremonial events, with delegated Justice for internal arbitration and discipline. The Grand Marshal is generally in charge of organizing and mobilizing membership and directing membership activities of the Order, in the sense of “marshaling” (gathering) forces to support the humanitarian missions of the Order [27].

 

Grand ArmourerChief of Chivalric & Crown Regalia – The Grand Armourer traditionally is in charge of procurement, management and distribution of all approved chivalric and nobiliary Regalia, insignia, official and ceremonial equipment, for the officers and members of the Order, and all physical official display items which represent the Order in any manner.

 

Grand Justiciar – Chief In-House Legal Counsel – The Grand Justiciar (Old English from “Justice” meaning a Judge) is a Lawyer of academic scholarship “learned in the law” with a seat in the Nobiliary Court of the Grand Mastery, thereby serving as In-House Legal Counsel, also providing the functions of an Arbitrator for internal complaints or disputes, and of a “Court of Appeal” for the Judiciary of the Order [28]. The Grand Justiciar is also responsible for facilitating with relevant law enforcement agencies for protection of the legal rights and security of the Order and its Grand and Crown Officers [29].

 

Grand Canon – Pontifical Constitutional Seat – The Grand Canon holds a Constitutional Seat on the Grand Mastery, with reciprocity, by virtue of being the Sovereign Pontiff as Head of the Curia of the Ancient Catholic Church under Templar Crown Patronage. The Grand Canon serves as a Bishop and Canonist of Apostolic lineage as career Clergy from a classical Church, for guiding and assisting the Grand Mastery on all canonical and ecclesiastical matters relevant to an Order of Chivalry (Temple Rule, 4, 8, 47).  The Grand Canon may be called as a foreign dignitary to address a Joint Session of the Templar Government, and may vote on matters affecting Patronage, constitutional issues, state security, or otherwise involving the Church.

 

Grand Regent – Royal Constitutional Seat – One or more Grand Regents may hold a Constitutional Seat on the Grand Mastery, with reciprocity, by virtue of being the Royal Sovereign of a Kingdom, Principality or Royal House reasonably related to Templar heritage giving supplemental Royal Patronage or Protection to the Order (in addition to its inherent sovereignty). The title of Grand Regent may be distinguished by a designation of territorial or institutional heraldic patrimony.

 

The Grand Regent serves as an expert for guiding and assisting the Grand Mastery on all matters of Royalty and Nobility relevant to an Order of Chivalry.  The Grand Regent may be called as a foreign dignitary to address a Joint Session of the Templar Government, and may vote on matters affecting Patronage, constitutional issues, state security, or otherwise involving the Royal House.  This fulfills the customary Templar mandate to “serve in Chivalry with the sovereign King” (Temple Rule, 1), as “servants of the sovereign King” of a supporting Regency (Temple Rule, 9).

 

Grand Sheikh – Saracen Constitutional Seat – The Grand Sheikh holds a Constitutional Seat on the Grand Mastery, with reciprocity, by virtue of being established as the Sovereign Sheikh (Prince Grand Master) of the restored Knights of the Order of Salahadin under Templar Crown Patronage. The Grand Sheikh serves as an expert for guiding and assisting the Grand Mastery on all matters of Arabian Royalty and Nobility relevant to the Order as a sovereign non-territorial Principality.  The Grand Sheikh may be called as a foreign dignitary to address a Joint Session of the Templar Government, and may vote on matters affecting Patronage, constitutional issues, state security, or otherwise involving the Order of Salahadin.

 

This fulfills the customary Templar mandate that the Grand Officers are actually required to have a Muslim “Saracen scribe” (by definition necessarily from Salahadin) in their personal entourage (Temple Rule, 77), and that Muslims can be full Templars as a “Brother Turcopole” (Temple Rule, 169).  Traditionally, under authority of a Templar Marshal, Turcopoles can have temporary command over Templar Knights, and over Sergeants when at arms, while serving as a Scout in native lands (Temple Rule, 170-171).

 

Offices of Templar Crown Service

 

“Sir Galahad is Brought to the Court of King Arthur” by Walter Crane (1911 AD), depicting Crown Officers reporting to the Grand Mastery

Crown Officer – The term “Crown Officer” (from 14th century Old English “Coroner”, literally “of the Crown”) is the generic appellation for an official Magistral delegate in Crown Service, as a traditional non-governmental Title of Chivalric Office serving under the Crown, by delegation of general administrative functions or specific official functions limited by their portfolio of titular designation. Traditionally a Crown Officer (Coroner) is an “ancient officer of the Common Law”, authorized “to make inquiry into the causes and circumstances” of events including finding a “treasure trove”, and “to serve writs and other process” on behalf of the Crown [30], with the original and primary duty of “protecting property rights of the Crown” [31].

 

Crown Officers are unilaterally appointed by the Grand Master on a temporary or indefinite basis, as may be appropriate and beneficial from time to time, serving solely at the will and pleasure of the Grand Master, assisting the Grand Mastery under direction of the Grand Officers. Multiple Crown Officers may be appointed to the same portfolio of designation. Grand Officers may also be separately appointed to an additional Crown Officer portfolio. (Crown Officers are different and separate from unrelated “Grand Officers”, who have the exclusive privilege of a voting seat at the Round Table of the Grand Mastery, which Crown Officers do not.)

 

Crown Almoner – A Crown Almoner (from Old English “Alms” meaning charitable donations) is a Crown Officer responsible for disbursement of funds for the humanitarian missions of the Order [32]. An Almoner directs administration of funds, resources and assets of the Order “in coordination with the Grand Chancellor, under the authority of the Grand Master” and any appointed auditors, and prepares budgets and accounting, “submitting them… to the Grand Master for approval with the advice of the Sovereign Council” of the Grand Mastery [33]. An Almoner may also manage tangible assets of the Treasury of the Order, including real estate properties, and upholding and enforcing contracts, deeds and easements related to such assets.

 

An “Almoner” in Chivalry is not the same as the common misconception as a “Treasurer” presumed to control all funds such as for a private fraternity. The position of a Crown Almoner shall not be elevated nor styled as a “Grand Officer” position, as it is prone to unwarranted overemphasis undermining Round Table principles of the Grand Mastery.  (Indeed, the traitor Judas was the treasurer who “had the bag”: John 12:3-8; 13:26-30.)  A Crown Almoner position can only be appointed to a person of genuine humility, or outsourced to an institutional certified accounting firm.

 

Crown Alderman – A Crown Alderman (from Old English “Elder-man”) is a Magistral administrator representing the Order, assigned to local communities for management of relations and community development, also with Judicial authority as a traditional “Elder” guiding the communities [34], thereby assisting and facilitating communities and related groups for engagement with and forming authorized Branches of the Order.

 

Crown Vizier (Advisor) – A Crown Vizier (from Old Arabic “bearer of burdens”) is traditionally an “executive officer” tasked with factual research and strategic analysis, as essential to serving as a “Councilor of State”, thus primarily as a Crown Advisor [35]. A Crown Vizier by Templar customs is an external special advisor to the Grand Mastery (Temple Rule, 8), authorized by appointment as a Crown Advisor only for such advice to be offered and received, who may be called to the Round Table only to give relevant advice, as and when needed from time to time (Temple Rule, 36).

 

Crown Herald – A Crown Herald, also Master of the College of Arms, must be a qualified expert in rules of heraldry, supported by relevant rules and protocols of royalty, nobility and chivalry, supported by proficiency in related issues of genealogy. The Crown Herald provides official and institutional heraldic artwork supporting the Order and all institutions under its Crown Patronage.

 

Crown Archivist – A Crown Archivist is a historian and researcher responsible for developing, maintaining and facilitating access to library archives of the Order, for preservation of the ancient and historical records, antique rare or out of print books, copies of manuscripts, images and documentation of artifacts, as evidences of the substance and heritage of the Order.

 

Offices of Chivalric Service

 

Tapestry depicting King Arthur (historical Prince Arthur Aidan) leading Knights in chivalric service

Grand Prior(ess) of a Grand Priory – A Grand Prior(ess) is a traditional non-governmental Title of Chivalric Office for a regional delegate as a Crown Officer, historically also called a “Provincial Master”, as the supervising authority for a geographic region (“province”) of a relevant Grand Priory. A Grand Prior(ess) and the requisite Grand Priory can be designated for a regional, national or multinational territory, or named for its international non-territorial mission of Templar heritage.

 

A Grand Prior(ess) must serve as a monastic leader of an autonomous Grand Priory as an especially large monastic group or network of such groups, which can only exist by its continuing Crown Patronage by the Templar Order or Ecclesiastical Patronage by its Church [36]. (Grand Priors are different and separate from unrelated “Grand Officers”, who have the exclusive privilege of a voting seat at the Round Table of the Grand Mastery, which Grand Priors do not.)

 

Prior(ess) of a Priory – A Prior(ess) is a traditional non-governmental Title of Chivalric Office for a monastic leader of a small or local Priory, traditionally also called a “Master”. A Prior(ess) and the requisite Priory can be designated for a local or regional territory, or named for its non-territorial mission. A Priory can be a Branch of the Order or a subdivision of a Grand Priory. A Prior(ess) must serve as a monastic leader of an autonomous Priory as a monastic group, which can only exist by its continuing Crown Patronage by the Templar Order or Ecclesiastical Patronage by its Church [37]. (Priors are are different and separate from “Grand Priors”, who are Crown Officers, which Priors are not, and thus Priors are not governmental officials in any capacity.)

 

Justiciar – A Justiciar (Old English from “Justice”) is a traditional non-governmental Title of Chivalric Office for a Lawyer of academic scholarship “learned in the law” serving as In-House Legal Counsel, providing the functions of an Arbitrator for internal complaints or disputes, for any Branch of the Order [38], and facilitating with relevant law enforcement agencies for protection of the legal rights and security of the Order and its members [39].

 

Chaplain – A Chaplain is an ecclesiastical Title of Chivalric Office for Templar Clergy ministering to general membership, helping to experience Chivalry as a form of “Holy Communion” (Temple Rule, 2, 57), serving as one of the “Disciples” (Temple Rule, 7) of the “Pontificate of the Temple of Solomon” (Temple Rule, 8), exercising ecclesiastical sovereignty of the Order (Temple Rule, 9, 62), as one of the Templar “servants of the Church… of Our Lady of God” (Temple Rule, 64).

 

Templar Chaplains have exclusive authority to administer sacraments “to minister to the spiritual needs of the Order”, especially for hearing Confessions and giving absolution for sins [40], and their independent “Ordinations of [Templar] Clergy” were required to “be received [accepted]” by Vatican Bishops [41]. Templars are thus forbidden to give Confession to any Priest other than a Templar Chaplain (Temple Rule, 45), without a special dispensation from the Grand Master (Temple Rule, 73).

 

Commander (of a Commandery) – A Commander is a traditional non-governmental Title of Chivalric Office for a leader in charge of an autonomous Commandery of Knights and Dames [42], either as a Branch of the Order or as a subdivision of a Grand Priory, which can only exist by its continuing Crown Patronage by the Templar Order. Without a Commandery, an accomplished Knight or Dame may be granted the appellation of Commander as an honourary or courtesy title [43]. A Commandery essentially functions as an “Embassy” officially representing the Order, such that the Commander is also a local diplomatic “Envoy” of the Grand Mastery and “Attaché” to the Grand Prior.

 

Preceptor (of a Preceptory) – A Preceptor is a traditional non-governmental Title of Chivalric Office for a leading educator, as head of a Preceptory training operation authorized as an autonomous Branch of the Order [44], or supporting a network of such Preceptories, teaching spiritual “precepts of Sacred Truth” [45], religious “moral and ecclesiastical” matters [46], and general rules of “conduct of action” such as Templar Skills Training in chivalric and nobiliary culture [47]. A Preceptory can be a small subdivision designated as a military base, university campus, church or monastery, or corporate headquarters.

 

Marshal of Court – A Marshal of Court (from Old English “Mareschal” meaning “horse servant”, short for “Field Marshal”), is a traditional non-governmental Title of Chivalric Office for a “Royal Household officer… who regulates… a feast or in a procession” maintaining “ceremonious or due order”, and serves among “various officers having police duties” [48]. A Marshal of Court thus organizes and administers the proceedings of activities, ceremonies and events of Templar membership on behalf of the Order. Historically, a Marshal was primarily responsible for strategies and tactical maneuvers, as well as equipment and working resources, in connection with battle plans and operational missions.

 

Titles of Chivalric Service

 

Knight / Dame of the Temple of Solomon – Knights and Dames are the pillars of an Order of Chivalry, chosen for demonstrated merits and accomplishments, upholding and representing the traditions of the Order, and collectively leading its humanitarian missions for advancing civilization. Historically, Knights and Dames were the highly trained monastic warriors of superior skills, strength and personal power, whose dedication made the Order a legendary institution of world history.

 

Knight / Dame of the Order of Saladin – Muslims participate in all general membership activities and events as Brothers and Sisters among Templars, through parallel membership in the autonomous affiliate Order the “Knights of the Order of Saladin”, under Sovereign Patronage of the Templar Order. Knights and Dames of the Order of Saladin may also hold various secular Titles of Office within the Templar Order.

 

Donat of Devotion – Donats of Devotion are Patron sponsors contributing substantial financial donations to support the humanitarian missions of the Order, in full participation of membership as Templar Brothers and Sisters, but without any requirement of active service.

 

Temple Guardian – Temple Guardians are prominent members of major achievements or capabilities which carry inherent benefits to the Templar Order, who are engaged in active service as Templar Brothers and Sisters supporting the missions of Knights and Dames. Temple Guardians are generally nobility, celebrities, public figures, or especially active members, who are dedicated to infrastructure development or high profile networking for the Order, as guardianship for preservation of Templar heritage for the benefit of humanity.

 

Sergeant / Adjutante Templar – Sergeants (men) and Adjutantes (women) constitute the primary general membership of the Order, in active service with full participation as Templar Brothers and Sisters, as skilled professionals directly assisting and supporting the missions of Knights and Dames.

 

Squire / Lady in Waiting – Squires, or Ladies in Waiting, are children not yet of age for full participation in membership, but who are considered to have a chivalric character and are expected to thrive as titled Knights and Dames in the future. This can be children who embrace the chivalric culture of their parents, or who demonstrate an independent passion for history and noble pursuits. A Squire or Lady in Waiting must join and participate together with a parent, legal guardian, or selected mentor approved by a parent, who must be a titled Knight or Dame of the Order.

 

 

Academic Source References

 

[1] International Commission for Orders of Chivalry “ICOC”, Principles of Validity of Orders (1963), Principle 6.

[2] Hoegen Dijkhof Advocaten, Legitimacy of Orders of St. John, Universiteit Leiden (2006), p.292, p.294.

[3] Noel Cox, Sovereign Authority for Orders of Chivalry, Heraldry Society of Southern Africa, 2000, pp.317-329.

[4] Henri de Curzon, La Règle du Temple, La Société de L’Histoire de France, Paris (1886), in Librairie Renouard.

[5] Saint Bernard de Clairvaux, Liber ad Milites Templi: De Laude Novae Militae, “Speech on Knights of the Temple: In Praise of the New Knighthood” (ca. 1136 AD);  Translated in:  Conrad Greenia, Bernard of Clairvaux: Treatises Three, Cistercian Fathers Series, No. 13, Cistercian Publications (1977), pp.127-145, “Chapter 4”.

[6] SMOM, Constitutional Code of Order, Sovereign Military Order of Malta, as amended (1961), Article 165.

[7] SMOM, Constitutional Code of Order, Sovereign Military Order of Malta, as amended (1961), Article 152.

[8] Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 3rd Edition, Merriam (1916), “Sen’es-chal”, p.877.

[9] Black’s Law Dictionary, 2nd Edition, West Publishing (1910), “Seneschal”, p.1071.

[10] SMOM, Constitutional Code of Order, Sovereign Military Order of Malta, as amended (1961), Article 21.3.

[11] SMOM, Constitutional Code of Order, Sovereign Military Order of Malta, as amended (1961), Article 152.

[12] Black’s Law Dictionary, 2nd Edition, West Publishing (1910), “Alderman”, “Aldermannus”, p.56.

[13] Encyclopaedia Britannica (1911), Volume 22, “Preceptor”, p.274.

[14] London Encyclopaedia (1829), Volume 18, “Precept”, p.32.

[15] Vatican, Catholic Encyclopedia (1908), Volume 4, “Commandments of the Church”, p.154.

[16] Encyclopaedia Britannica (1911), Volume 22, “Precept”, p.274.

[17] Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 3rd Edition, Merriam (1916), “Stew’ard”, p.943.

[18] Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 3rd Edition, Merriam (1916), “Sen’ti-nel”, p.879.

[19] Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 3rd Edition, Merriam (1916), “Cham’ber”, “Cham’ber-lain”, p.167.

[20] Vatican, Catholic Encyclopedia (1912), Volume 14, “Templars, Knights”, p.493, Part 1.

[21] Pope Innocent II, Omne Datum Optimum “Every Good Gift” (29 March 1139); Malcolm Barber & Keith Bate, The Templars: Selected Sources, Manchester University Press (2002), pp.59-64: “The customs for observance of [Templar] religion and service… shall not be infringed nor diminished by any ecclesiastical nor secular person… subject to no person outside your Order”.

[22] Pope Innocent II, Omne Datum Optimum “Every Good Gift” (29 March 1139); Malcolm Barber & Keith Bate, The Templars: Selected Sources, Manchester University Press (2002), pp.59-64: “We command… that Ordinations of your Clergy… be received [accepted] by a Catholic Bishop… who of course is supported by our [Vatican] authority to bestow what is required.”

[23] Alan Butler and Stephen Dafoe, The Warriors and the Bankers, Lewis Masonic, Surrey, England (2006), pp.56-57.

[24] Frank Sanello, The Knights Templars: God’s Warriors, the Devil’s Bankers, Taylor Trade Publishing, Oxford (2003), p.278.

[25] Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition (1911), Volume 1, “Alchemy”, pp.519-520.

[26] SMOM, Constitutional Code of Order, Sovereign Military Order of Malta, as amended (1961), Articles 149-150.

[27] Black’s Law Dictionary, 2nd Edition, West Publishing (1910), “Marshal”, “Marshaling”, p.763.

[28] Black’s Law Dictionary, 2nd Edition, West Publishing (1910), “Justiciar”, p.683.

[29] Black’s Law Dictionary, 2nd Edition, West Publishing (1910), “Justicies”, p.684.

[30] Black’s Law Dictionary, 2nd Edition, West Publishing (1910), “Coroner”, p.272.

[31] Douglas Harper, Online Etymology Dictionary (2018), “Coroner (n.)”

[32] Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 3rd Edition, Merriam (1916), “Al’mon-er”, p.30.

[33] SMOM, Constitutional Code of Order, Sovereign Military Order of Malta, as amended (1961), Article 156.1.

[34] Black’s Law Dictionary, 2nd Edition, West Publishing (1910), “Alderman”, “Aldermannus”, p.56.

[35] Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 3rd Edition, Merriam (1916), “Vi-zier”, p.1073.

[36] Vatican, Catholic Encyclopedia (1911), Volume 12, “Priory”, p.428.

[37] Vatican, Catholic Encyclopedia (1911), Volume 12, “Priory”, p.428.

[38] Black’s Law Dictionary, 2nd Edition, West Publishing (1910), “Justiciar”, p.683.

[39] Black’s Law Dictionary, 2nd Edition, West Publishing (1910), “Justicies”, p.684.

[40] Vatican, Catholic Encyclopedia (1912), Volume 14, “Templars, Knights”, p.493, Part 1.

[41] Pope Innocent II, Omne Datum Optimum “Every Good Gift” (29 March 1139); Malcolm Barber & Keith Bate, The Templars: Selected Sources, Manchester University Press (2002), pp.59-64.

[42] Encyclopaedia Britannica (1911), Volume 6, “Commandery”, p.765.

[43] London Encyclopaedia (1829), Volume 6, “Commandery”, p.253.

[44] Encyclopaedia Britannica (1911), Volume 22, “Preceptor”, p.274.

[45] London Encyclopaedia (1829), Volume 18, “Precept”, p.32.

[46] Vatican, Catholic Encyclopedia (1908), Volume 4, “Commandments of the Church”, p.154.

[47] Encyclopaedia Britannica (1911), Volume 22, “Precept”, p.274.

[48] Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, 3rd Edition, Merriam (1916), “Mar’shal”, p.601.

 

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