15 Facts About Knights Hospitaller


Order of Knights of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem, commonly known as the Knights Hospitaller, was a medieval and early modern Catholic military order.

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Knights Hospitaller became divided during the Protestant Reformation, when rich commanderies of the order in northern Germany and the Netherlands became Protestant and largely separated from the Roman Catholic main stem, remaining separate to this day, although ecumenical relations between the descendant chivalric orders are amicable.

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Hospitallers and the Knights Templar became the most formidable military orders in the Holy Land.

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In 1374, the Knights Hospitaller took over the defence of Smyrna, conquered by a crusade in 1344.

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Knights Hospitaller had left his own son with La Valette, so he could hardly be indifferent to the fate of the fortress.

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Knights Hospitaller' changing attitudes were coupled with the effects of the Reformation and Counter-Reformation and the lack of stability from the Roman Catholic Church.

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That the Knights Hospitaller associated themselves with the allies of their sworn enemies shows their moral ambivalence and the new commercial-minded nature of the Mediterranean in the 17th century.

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The Knights Hospitaller pretended that they were above the reach of crowned heads: they seized and pillaged without concern of the property of both infidels and Christians.

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The authorities on Malta immediately recognised the importance of corsairing to their economy and set about encouraging it, as despite their vows of poverty, the Knights Hospitaller were granted the ability to keep a portion of the spoglio, which was the prize money and cargo gained from a captured ship, along with the ability to fit out their own galleys with their new wealth.

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The Knights Hospitaller were even generally dismissive of the Maltese nobility.

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However, the two groups coexisted peacefully, since the Knights Hospitaller boosted the economy, were charitable, and protected against Muslim attacks.

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Knights Hospitaller had bought the island of Saint Croix as his personal estate and deeded it to the Knights of St John.

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Knights Hospitaller were dispersed, though the order continued to exist in a diminished form and negotiated with European governments for a return to power.

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Sovereign Military Knights Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem, of Rhodes and of Malta, better known as the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, is a Roman Catholic lay religious order and the world's oldest surviving order of chivalry.

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In England, almost all the property of the Knights Hospitaller was confiscated by King Henry VIII through the dissolution of the monasteries during the Reformation.

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