the dramatic history of the Knights Templar, the most powerful military order of the Crusades
A source of enduring contemporary curiosity, the Knights of the Temple of Solomon were an order of warrior monks first founded to protect pilgrims to the Holy Land from infidel attack-
Piers Paul Read reveals the Templars – in their white tunics with red crosses over chainmail – as the first uniformed standing army in the western world, as well as pioneers of international banking. He examines their fall at the hands of a greedy French king, who extracted confessions of heresy and immorality by torture. And the extraordinary Middle Ages, with their blend of high religious fervour and unusual cruelty, are brought startlingly to the page.