Knights Hospitaller: This beautiful building is in the hamlet of Toller Fratrum, I have never been here before, it is beautifully in a time warp, it is an isolated hamlet.
In the 1100s the Knights Hospitallers, the brethren of St. John of Jerusalem arrived and established themselves here, the name ‘Fratrum’ is Latin for ‘brothers’ – brethren, of the Knights Hospitaller of St John.
Knights Hospitaller and Templars
Pop culture leads us to know of the Knights Templar more than we do of the Hospitallers but both became imposing military orders in the Holy Lands, the Templars became extraordinary rich and powerful that Philip IV of France had many members of the order arrested and many were were tortured, murdered, burned at the stake, and had their lands and riches seized.
In 1312, under pressure from King Philip, Pope Clement V resentfully disbanded the Knights Templar.
Not far from Toller Fratrum is the village of Templecombe and it’s names is derived from the Templars who established themselves there.
This manor house is built on the site of the original dwelling of the knights. It was remodelled after the Dissolution of the Monasteries. Next to it is a thatched barn which is now in a very tragic state, and it is thought to be the originally served as the refectory for the knights.
These warrior knights or ‘brothers’ lived at Toller Fratrum up until the Dissolution of the Monasteries by King Henry VIII.
The Knights Hospitallers are in a sense still with us and most of us will recognise the eight-pointed cross worn by those first Knights of St John – today the cross is on the uniform of Saint John’s Ambulance and are overseen by the Order of Saint John.
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This is the one of the most unique locations I have visited and is an amazing to walk on the ground of warrior knights.