The Scotland Knights Templar History and causes
Templar representatives standing in front of Scotland Templar Preceptory remains from 2007
The SKT history has many variations and changes. From the beginning in Scotland in 1127 via Hugh De Payen, to the later times of charters evidencing the existence of SKT in Scotland, in fact rebukes findings some scholars claim, along with claims of Freemason links. It is important to note that in Scotland when Templars first arrived, only Catholics or Pagans existed, so the proof of Catholic Templars doubling as Masons is very questionable at the least. Even claims that the Sinclairs fought at Bannockburn have yet to be proven by document, and more so, in Holyrood palace trial in 1309, the Sinclairs actually testified against Scottish Templars. Skeptics allude to the fact that there are no specific claims documented on Templars in Bannockburnin 1314, yet there is more than enough circumstantial evidence according to Charters of their existence, and after including the following:
1128 – Hughes de Payne visits Scotland to seek support. David I creates Balentrodach from a bequest, to be followed by Bequests by future Scottish Kings.
1128 – According to Ailred of Rievaulx, David I kept himself surrounded by Templars and made them the guardians of his morals by day and night. David also appointed a Templar as his Treasurer. David I and his grandson Malcolm IV from a charter of 1159 from Kelso Abbey. It was David I who introduced the Templar Knights into Scotlandand Leith in 1128.
1129 – Only remains of Templar Preceptory Scotland are left from its original date built in 1129. Only existing Templar property in Scotland.
1160 – First documented trace of Templars in Scotland found in Charter from town of St. Andrews. Two of the witnesses are “Richard of the hospital of Jerusalem”, and “Robert, brother of the Temple”. These Templars witnessed the royal charter of Malcolm IV’s confirmation to St. Andrew’s Templar Priory.
1215 – Charter of King Alexander II of Scotland (Luffness March 20, 1215) confirming to the brothers of theTemple of Solomonin Jerusalem all rights, liberties and customs granted to them by kings David, Malcolm IV and William.
1221 – Templars were first established in North Scotland by King David 1st. Their main base in Scotland was at Maryculter in Kincardineshire, Aborne and Dull, founded by one of their members, Walter Bisset in 1221AD. The place name Temple is of course a definite indication of their presence. e and influence in an area (e.g. Temple, Midlothian).
1230 – The principal houses of the order were at Maryculter and Ballintruduch. However, the presence of the Templars can be found in Leith indirectly. There is a charter dated 1230 in which Gilbert, son of Henry of Leith, donates land to the Knights of St John Hospitallers of Torphican in which he grants land in Leith to Godfrey de Saulton, Grand Master of the Order for the building of a Hospice. The charter is however not used until 1327 (due to Leith being in Templar hands). The Templars and Hospitallers where in competition with one another. However in 1327, 15 years after the abolition of the Knights Templar the two orders came together to form the Order of St Anthony in Leith.
1300 – Old Church, Temple, Midlothian. All that survives of the Preceptory at Templeis the 13th-century church. Like many religious houses, the chapel survived the Reformation serving as the local kirk until 1832.
1309 – Brother Walter de Clifton claims at his trial in 1309 to have served at Balantrodoch for three years, having relieved preceptor John de Huseflete, who had served for the previous two years. Charter of King Alexander file appendices p. 193
1309 – Pope Clemente exonerates the Templars in a secret trial at Chinon castle. This knowledge and document is not to be discovered until 2001 by Vatican Paleographer Dr.Barbara Frale.
1309 – When the Templars were rounded up inFrancein 1307,Scotlanditself was not affected; but the area south of the Firth of Forth, where Roslyn is situated, belonged to England at that time. This fact is often neglected and it is frequently assumed that the Scottish borders were then as they are now, and that the Knights Templar of Temple was affected by the ban. Upon receiving the Papal Decree, Edward ordered all Templars to surrender themselves atHolyrood Palace. Two Knights were arrested, Walter de Clifton and William de Middleton while a third, Thomas Tocci, surrendered voluntarily. None of them were of fighting age, or Scottish by birth, but all were residents of Temple, the Templars’ Scottish headquarters. Few Templars were actually in South Scotland. A majority were in the North. They were tried in December 1309 by an ecclesiastical court, presided over by William de Lamberton, Bishop of St. Andrews. John Solario, the papal legate to Scotland, prosecuted the Knights Templar. During the trials, both Henry St. Clair and his son William were called as witnesses.
Despite the Sinclair’s testimony against the Templars, the Templars were found not guilty. This fact of history proves two things;
1) Templars did exist in Scotland
2) The Sinclair legend of being Templars or support of are refuted
1400 – The Order of the Temple in Scotland “incorporated” within The Order of St. John and the Temple. Even with the Order of St. John and the Temple of Jerusalem in co-existence, the Templar lands were administered separately to St. John’s.
1427 – Charter “George Broun-Templar of the towne”
In this Charter of 1427 is mentioned a George Brown-“Templar of this town” at a time that there were supposed to be no Templars in Scotland.
1444 – A charter of 1444 of the Preceptory of St Anthony Leith, to the Preceptory of St Anthony, The Knights of St. John of Jerusalem and theTemple of Solomon, which were still an active Order, more proof of Scottish Templar history.
SKTUSA modern works
The USA Templars have oaths to serve our Lord and Savior, and to continue to aid the poor, the sick and elderly. Finances from SKT members are the funding for Templar USA projects and are from our Priory’s donations. These also expand to the SKT IFA world conclave projects. Past projects have included needed organisations and churches. The SKT USA funds and supports everything from the needy child, needy family for food, support and for organizations including but not limited to:
– aid to St. Vincent De Paul Food pantry and homeless
– donations to needy families of SVDP and other churches
Support for Church of Scotland 2007
Mary House Catholic Worker support for the sick, and separately Christmas giving to impoverished children (4 churches) 2006
USA Templars with Project Care case Founder 2012
SKTUSA Templars sponsor Florence’s comfort house, to aid safe haven for impoverished children 2012
If you are interested in serving our Lord, please apply to the SKTUSA. Despite many other Templar groups, we rise above those types and keep our goals for the future!