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Secret Societies of the Middle Ages

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Author Topic: Secret Societies of the Middle Ages  (Read 2822 times)
Trena Alloway
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« Reply #135 on: February 01, 2009, 11:15:47 pm »

the head. Instantly there came on a terrific storm, the ship went to pieces, and nearly all who were on board perished. The very fish vanished from that part of the sea.

Another of the witnesses had heard the same story. The common tradition of the East, he said, was, that in old times, before the two spiritual orders of knighthood were founded, a head used to rise in a certain whirlpool named Setalia, the appearance of which was very dangerous for the ships which happened to be near it. We are to suppose, though it does not appear that the witnesses said so, that the Templars had contrived to get possession of this formidable head.

We are to observe that the witnesses who thus deposed had been picked and culled in all parts of France, by the king's officers, out of those who had confessed before the different prelates and provincial councils, and who were, by threats and promises, engaged to persist in what they had said. The terror they were under was visible in their countenances, their words, and their actions. Many of them began by saying that they would not vary from what they had deposed before such a bishop or such a council; yet even among these some were bold enough to revoke their confessions, declaring that they had been drawn from them by torture, and asserted the innocence of the order. Others retracted their confessions when brought before the commissioners, but shortly afterwards, having probably in the interval been well menaced or tortured by the king's officers, returned and retracted their retractation.

The case of John de Pollencourt, the thirty-seventh witness, is a remarkable instance. He began in the usual way, by declaring that he would persist in his confession made before the Bishop of Amiens, touching the denial of Christ, &c. The commissioners, observing his paleness and agitation, told him to tell

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