Port of La Rochelle, France
In the aftermath of the Cathar crusade the Templars remained protected and their influence and wealth was still growing. However by the turn of the 14th century the Templars had also attracted many powerful enemies, one of whom would
lay the first stone to the demise of the Templar order, or at least, so he thought. Philippe lV of France had become envious and angry with the Templars, he owed them a great deal of money, thought they were
arrogant and unruly ,no control was over the Templars as they only answered to the pope and all this on Philippe’s own territory. This all gave reason for Philippe to use heresy as an excuse to get rid of the order.
After the kidnapping
and subsequent death of Pope Boniface Vlll along with the poison of another, namely Benedict Xl, Philippe conveniently secured the election of one Clement V, who was at the time archbishop of Bordeaux. This allowed Philippe to get what he wanted, the
suppression of the Templars because after all, Clement V was indebted to him for making him pope.
From that moment on the Templars had become wanted men and many were tortured and interrogated on October 13th, 1307. Philippe may have
quashed the Templars but their treasure had eluded him, nothing was found. It is more than probable that the Templars knew of this impending danger and took their treasure of wealth, sacred documents and relics and sent them to their naval base at La
Rochelle were they transported all this onto around eighteen galleys ready to disembark. What happened to those ships remains a mystery, maybe some ended up in Portugal or more so to Scotland, the only monarchy in the 14 century Europe that did not recognize
the authority of the Catholic Church.
Meanwhile the Templars were officially dissolved in 1312, despite the lack of evidence and information that Philippe had accused them of. In 1314 the grand master if the Templars, Jacque
de Molay was roasted to death over a burning fire. Philippe had even gone to lengths after to persuade other monarchs to follow his lead to make sure no Templar survived but this mainly fell on deaf ears, particularly in Scotland. Philippe
himself died of mystery causes at the end of 1314, the same year as he ordered the death of Molay. Indeed one month after the burning of the grand master, Pope clement was dead. It was reported that Molay had called his persecutors to join him
before God’s court within a year while he was about to be burned!