Friday 4 March 2016

Preceptory of Killarge (Walsh)

The following is from Fr. Thomas Walsh's History of the Irish Hierarchy, published in New York in 1854, chapter xxxvii, at p. 366-8:

Killarge In the reign of king John Gilbert de Borard founded a preceptory in this place under the invocation of St John the Baptist for knights Templars but on the extinction of that order it was granted to the knights of St John of Jerusalem In the year 1308 the king Edward II having received the commands of the Pope caused all the knights Templars in Great Britain and Ireland to be made prisoners and their property to be sequestered Being a formidable body of men it was necessary that much caution should be observed in the management of this affair There was a writ directed to John Wogan Lord Justice of Ireland informing him of the proceedings adopted in England for the apprehension of the Templars and seizure of their goods and commanding him to proceed in a similar manner against those in Ireland but the time and place for the assembling of the sheriffs and their followers was left to the discretion of the said lord justice and the treasurer of the exchequer It was however ordered that the writ should be executed before the Templars could learn the proceedings against the members of the order in England In pursuance of those commands the establishments of Killarge and Ballymoon were suppressed The instructions given to the English sheriffs were that they should arrest all the Templars within their districts to seize all their lands cattle and goods and to cause an inventory of the same to be made in presence of the warden of the place whether Templar or not and of respectable persons in the neighborhood to place said goods and chattels in safe keeping to keep the Templars in safe custody in some convenient place without subjecting them to prison or to irons and to preserve the charge of the goods and chattels till they received instructions as to their final disposal The military order of the Templars was instituted about the year 1113 Some noblemen who had followed Godfrey de Bouillon to theholy wars against the Turks were the founders of this military institute They were nine in number and the principals were Hugh de Paganis and Godfrey de Sacro Amore They associated for the purpose of preserving the holy places and defending the pilgrims from the outrages of the Turks while on their way to the Holy Land To the three vows of which they made profession before the patriarch of Jerusalem they added a fourth that of perpetual warfare with the Turks They obtained the name of Templars because at the desire of Baldwin the Second king of Jerusalem they inhabited a house that was adjacent to the temple of Solomon They afterwards in the year 1128 became a religious order were confirmed as such by Pope Honorius H and St Bernard compiled a rule which they were to observe The order of knights Templars being accused of various crimes Pope Clement V called a council at Vienna with a view as he himself declared of ascertaining the truth of those allegations This council was held in the year 1311 and is the fifteenth oecumenical one of the Church The second reason was to deliberate on the rescue or relief of the Holy Land and the third motive was to provide for the maintenance of morals and discipline The decree of extinction which was only however provisional not definitive was passed on the sixth of the nones of May AD 1312 It appears they were justly condemned though the contrary is asserted The pontiff Clement V after due examination which he instituted wrote to Philip the Fair of France that the crimes of the Templars were acknowledged by seventy four members of their body that they had freely and without any coercion whatever affirmed on oath the truth of their guilt and among other things confessed that it was usual in the admission of members to abjure the Redeemer and spit upon the Cross that they committed horrible and disgusting crimes which he could not mention It is moreover absurd to suppose that all the cardinals bishops inquisitors officials magistrates and others could be so unmindful of their obligations and of public justice as to be influenced in their judgment in order to gratify the cupidity or the resentment of Philip the Fair of France Whether guilty or not as the order became suspected it became useless as no honest or well disposed person would embrace its institute Queen Elizabeth granted the commandery of Killarge to Mary wife of Gerald Aylmer on the 12th of December 1590

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