Friday The 13th
October 13th 1307, King Phillip IV of France arrested the Grand Master of the Knights of the Temple of Solomon and 60 of his Knights. These Knights, also known as the Templars were brutally and unspeakably tortured in the attempt to extract the location of their vast treasury. Perhaps the most horrible was coating the victim’s feet in lard or oil, and then slowly roasting them over a flame.
Phillip was heavily indebted to the Templar order and repeated the act performed one year earlier when he expelled all Jews from France, seizing their property and confiscating the monies owed to them.
The remaining Templars escaped with their fleet of ships from the French port of La Rochelle and dispersed. The treasure was never located and subsequently in 1310, Phillip roasted Jacques de Molay, Grand Master of the Order, over a slow fire until he was dead. Before he died he cursed King Phillip and his puppet Pope Clement V that they would be dead within the year. They were.
After the diaspora, the order survived, albeit in quiet, and later reformed and continues to this day. But that’s another story….
Arguably, the legend of Friday the 13th being bad luck originated with these events.
Pictured is a Templar small sword, circa 1750-1780.
Canon 5D MKII, ISO 3200, Leica 70mm Macro lens at f5.6