In their headquarters in Jerusalem Templars owned a relic of the True Cross used like a palladium during battles, in the same way as the kings of Jerusalem did with the fragment preserved in the church of the Holy Sepulchre. Sources also recall several staurothecae in the homes of the Order, which are maybe also referred to in the wall decoration of various churches. In this context, the reliquary kept in the Cleveland Museum appears extremely interesting, as a long inscription on the frame recounts the story of the cross that was inserted inside it in 1214. This was stolen in the Holy Land by a priest: on the return journey he died, but not before leaving the relic to the Templars, upon the Virgin’s exhortation. So divine will delivered the reliquary to the knights, and they surrounded it with thirty relics, visible through openings that form a cross pattée, which is the emblem of the Order. The collection of relics includes those of St George and St Theodore, strongly revered in Brindisi, where the reliquary was probably made. Indeed during the thirteenth century the Templars were increasingly interested in the cult of saints and they were directly engaged in the canonization of Bevignate.

Templars, Cults, and Relics: The Cleveland Reliquary of the True Cross

Gaetano Curzi
2020

Abstract

In their headquarters in Jerusalem Templars owned a relic of the True Cross used like a palladium during battles, in the same way as the kings of Jerusalem did with the fragment preserved in the church of the Holy Sepulchre. Sources also recall several staurothecae in the homes of the Order, which are maybe also referred to in the wall decoration of various churches. In this context, the reliquary kept in the Cleveland Museum appears extremely interesting, as a long inscription on the frame recounts the story of the cross that was inserted inside it in 1214. This was stolen in the Holy Land by a priest: on the return journey he died, but not before leaving the relic to the Templars, upon the Virgin’s exhortation. So divine will delivered the reliquary to the knights, and they surrounded it with thirty relics, visible through openings that form a cross pattée, which is the emblem of the Order. The collection of relics includes those of St George and St Theodore, strongly revered in Brindisi, where the reliquary was probably made. Indeed during the thirteenth century the Templars were increasingly interested in the cult of saints and they were directly engaged in the canonization of Bevignate.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11564/717853
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