York Rite Knights Templar Sword

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This wonderful Knight Templar Sword belonged to Sir Knight Companion Robert D. Newins as is name is permanently etched into the blade and his initials R.D.N. are also scrimshawed into the ivory handle.   The sword is in chivalry the ensign or symbol of knighthood.  Thus Monstrelet says:   "The sons of the Kings of France are knights at the font of baptism, being regarded as the chiefs of knighthood, and they receive, from the cradle the sword which is the sign thereof."  Saint Palaye called the sword "the most honorable badge of chivarly, and a symbol of the labor that the knight was to encounter."  The charge to a Knight Templar, that he should never draw his sword unless convinced of the justice of the cause in which he is engaged, nor to sheathe it until his enemies were subdued, finds also its origin in the custom of the Middle Ages.  Swords were generally manufactured with a legend on the blade.  Among the most common of these was that used on swords made in Spain, many examples of which are still to be found in modern collections.  That legend is:  No me saques sin ranson.  No me embaines sin honor; that is, Do not draw me without justice.  Do not sheathe me without honorSo highly was the sword esteemed in the Middle Ages as a part of a knight's equipment that special names were given to those of the most celebrated heros, which have been transmitted to us in the ballads and romances of that period.   In Freemasonry, the use of the sword as a part of the Masonic clothing is confined to the advanced degrees and the Degrees of Chivalry, when, of course it is worn as a part of the insignia of knighthood.  In the Symbolic Degrees its appearance in the Lodge, except as a symbol is strictly prohibited.  The Masonic prints engraved in the eighteenth century, when the sword, at least as late as 1780, constituted a part of the dress of every gentleman, show that it was discarded by the members when they entered the Lodge.   The official swords of the Tiler and the Pursuivant or Sword-Bearer are the only exceptions.

 

         

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