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The Cross-legged Templar
The Monumental Effigies in Temple Church London are considered an enigma; some believing that the Knights with crossed legs were Crusader Knights. The true purpose of the nine stone effigies and the coffin however is far more interesting and was well understood by Grand Masters of the Order and those who placed the Effigies.
When the original Knights returned from excavating under Temple Mount in Jerusalem they brought back much treasure that was concealed at various locations known only to those Knights and successive Grand Masters. The secret of the treasure sites was recorded on the Chess Board which symbol became the Templar Banner. One of the sites is the ‘key’ to the rest. Of the other eight sites six are identified as being on black squares, depicted by the Knight Effigies with ‘crossed legs’, such as that of William Marshall 2nd Earl of Pembroke and the three effigies with footrests. Interestingly the effigy of a ‘member of the de Ros family’ is without armour and feminine in character (a French Female Knight, Chevaleresse). If so this would be consistent with the square it would occupy on the Chess Board and the location of the treasure.
In the Church of St Mary at Aldworth (near Newbury) there are almost identical stone effigies known as the ‘Aldworth Giants that tell the same story