Was Napoleon murdered?

Napoleon Bonaparte died in exile at the age of 52 on the Island of St Helena on May 5, 1821. The official cause of death according to the autopsy carried out by Napoleon’s personal physician, Francesco Antommarchi, was stomach cancer.

The valet’s diaries

However, when the diaries of Napoleon’s valet, Louis Marchand, were first published in 1955, they fuelled some concern that the emperor may not have died of natural causes. These diaries described symptoms of Napoleon’s illness in St Helen, many of which incidentally correspond to those found in arsenic poisoning (vomiting, dry cough, nausea, drowsiness, headaches, excessive thirst). The valet’s journal shows that symptoms often came and went and were followed by periods of general well being.

Arsenic poisoning?

In 1961, Dr. Sten Forshufvud argued that the emperor’s symptoms coincided with those of chronic arsenic poisoning in his book, Who killed Napoleon? Forshufvud obtained a lock of hair that had been cut from Napoleon’s head after his death and asked the British Atomic Energy Establishment to analyze it. The results of the study showed that the hairs contained an amount of arsenic ten times above normal. The arsenic also showed irregular distribution along the length of hair, with peaks and troughs along the strands, suggesting the victim went through a pattern of arsenic intake (in line with the periods of wellbeing described in the valet’s journal).

Arsenic poisoning resurfaced in 1995, when the Chemistry and Toxicology Unit of the FBI examined a sample of the emperor’s hair for arsenic analysis at the request of Ben Weider, founder of the International Napoleonic Society, who provided two hairs belonging to Napoleon. According to the FBI, the levels of arsenic reported were 33.3 parts per million (ppm) and 16.3 ppm (vs a normal human level of 0.08ppm) and were levels consistent with arsenic poisoning.

Similar conclusions were reached in June 2001, by Pascal Kintz of the Strasbourg Forensic Institute in France who analyzed hair samples that had been taken from Napoleon while he was still alive (in 1805, 1814 and 1821). The analysis showed abnormally high levels of arsenic, and Kintz concluded that the emperor may have been poisoned.

 Wallpaper toxic fumes
This was used in the 1800s as a pigment

A study by Jones and Lendingham (JonesDE, Ledingham KW. Arsenic in Napoleon’s wallpaper, Nature, 1982, 299:626-7) suggests that Napoleon may have been accidentally poisoned by copper arsenides present in his wallpaper. This was painted in Scheele’s green (or Paris green, as the compound was used in Paris sewers to kill rats) which was a mixture of copper arsenides. Moreover, some moulds may have been present and may have volatized arsenic fumes. Measurements of a wallpaper sample taken from Napoleon’s room in St Helen show arsenic in substantial concentration. The paper argues that death by poisonous wallpaper was well documented as early as the 1890s.

In May 2004, Lin, Alber and Henkelmann examined several strands of hair, two pieces cut the day after his death in 1821 and two pieces cut in Elba in 1814. They used instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA) and the results showed that the hairs did have an elevated concentration of arsenic, as well as 18 other elements. This suggests that exposure to arsenic may have started as early as 1814.

Heart failure?

A team of forensic pathologists led by Steven Karch, of the Medical Examiner Medical Examiner Department in San Francisco believe that it could have been the treatments administered to the emperor that actually killed him, not arsenic poisoning. In their paper, Channeling the Emperor: what really killed Napoleon? (J R Soc Med. 2004 August; 97(8): 397–399), they suggest that the immediate cause of Napoleon’s death could have been a rare form of ventricular tachycardia (torsade de pointes) brought about by hypokalemia (low concentration of potassium in the blood). They have observed that treatment in patients with promyelocytic leukemia using arsenic trioxide have occasionally resulted in ventricular tachycardia and sudden death.

The valet’s and phisician’s journals show that because Napoleon suffered from nausea, he had been administered tartar emetic regularly. This is an antimony potassium tartrate and could have eventually led to low potassium levels in the blood, according to Dr. Karch’s team. On the day before Napoleon’s death, he was administered a very high dose of calomel (mercury chloride), which was not absorbed by the gastrointestinal tract as suggested by the fact that the journals report significant bouts of diarrhea. This in turn may have caused dehydration and a sudden drop in potassium levels, bringing about the torsade de pointes and sudden death. They argue therefore that Napoleon’s death was caused by “medical disadventure” and not directly by arsenic poisoning.

Stomach cancer

Finally, in a more recent case study presented to Nature Clinical Practice Gastroenterology & Hepatology in 2007, Robert Genta (professor of pathology and internal medicine at UT Southwestern) and other researchers presented their evaluation of Napoleon’s available clinical history and original autopsy and compared this with clinicopathologic data from 135 gastric cancer patients. They concluded that Napoleon is likely to have suffered from chronic gastritis and that this in turn may have led to the development of an ulcer which later became cancer. Therefore, according to this study, Napoleon died of gastrointestinal bleeding caused by very advanced gastric cancer (see, Napoleon Bonaparte’s gastric cancer: a clinicopathologic approach to staging, pathogenesis, and etiology, Nature Clinical Practice Gastroenterology & Hepatology (2007) 4, 52-57).

The jury is therefore still out on whether Napoleon was murdered, whether his physicians over-administered arsenic or whether he died of cancer. All arguments so far have been presented very convincingly. Whatever the truth, we agree with Robert Genta: whether Napoleon succeeded in escaping St Helena (as he had done in 1814 when he fled Elba), his existing ulcer would have prevented him from ever becoming a threat to European peace as he would not have lasted much longer past 1821.


et in Arcadia ego

The first time I came across this sentence in Latin, I thought the verb was missing… Little did I know that Latin makes an exception for epitaphs like this one: the verb is not required, especially if we’re emphasizing the subject, “ego”. Therefore, et in Arcadia ego translates into “I am in Arcadia”.

A lot has been written about this epitaph over the past four hundred years. Art historians ascribe it to Virgil; investigative journalists believe it holds a secret code. The phrase first appeared in a 1618 painting by Giovanni Francesco Barbieri (Guercino) portraying two Arcadian shepherds staring at a skull which is resting on a broken column. On the side of the column, Guercino wrote: et in Arcadia ego.Painting by Guercino

Arcadia was a mountainous region of Greece populated by herdsmen and shepherds. Their music inspired Greek poets who saw in these shepherds the ideal man, untouched by the outside world (much like Rousseau’s beau sauvage). The setting was “bucolic” from the Greek bukolos – herdsman. In the third century BC,  Theocritus created a new form of poetry based on imaginary exchanges between shepherds known as idylls. In the first century BC, Virgil wrote ten poems known as the Eclogues, which were set in Arcadia. Incidentally, it was the Eclogues that made Virgil’s reputation in the Middle Ages. Eusebius of Caesarea interpreted Virgil’s description of the birth of a child as the start of a Golden Age in the fourth Eclogue as a prophecy about the birth of Christ.

The pastoral theme became very popular in the seventeenth century. Guercino’s painting introduces the theme of mortality to the perfect world of Arcadia. The skull stares at the shepherds and the inscription beneath it (supposing they can read it) reminds them that everything in nature has to contend with death.

Poussin’s Les bergers d’Arcadie

PoussinIn 1647, Nicolas Poussin used the same epitaph in his painting Les bergers d’Arcadie. Four shepherds gather round a tomb on which is inscribed et in Arcadia ego. Erwin Panofsky has written at length on the meaning of this sentence and he concludes that the correct translation is “I too was born in Arcadia.”


Rennes-le-Château is a small village in South West France. In 1781, the last of the Negres d’Albes, the family who owned the castle in the village, bequeath a secret to her confessor, Abbé Antoine Bigou, and handed him some documents. Disturbed by what he had learnt, the Abbé hid the documents in the cavity of a pillar in the Church of St. Magdalene in the village. He also had a large stone slab placed on the Negres d’Albes’ tomb with several inscriptions, among which featured et in Arcadia ego.

In 1891, the Abbé in Rennes, Berenger Saunière, discovered the hidden documents while doing restoration work in the church of St. Magdalene. Saunière brought the documents to Paris so that they could be examined by an expert paleographer. According to Baigent, Leigh and Lincoln (The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail) Saunière visited the Louvre to see Poussin’s Les bergers d’Arcadie. They also suggest that the inscription et in Arcadia ego could be a code. For example, the anagram I tego arcane dei reads: “In it I hold the secrets of god.” Was Poussin suggesting that the Grail is somewhere in France?

Templars’ Treasure

I had forgotten about Baigent and Leigh’s far-fetched theories, when I came across an interesting fact. In 1524, Giovanni Verrazano sailed to Nova Scotia. In his maps, he called this region Arcadia. As Steven Sora points out, the French name for Nova Scotia is L’Acadie, which was taken from the native Indian word for “fertile land.” It is possible that Templar ships that sailed from France on the eve of the Templar extermination by Philip IV may have reached the new world years before Columbus did. Medieval hagiography has numerous accounts of voyages made by Scottish monks to evangelise new worlds. It is therefore very possible that the Templars may have got to Nova Scotia.

If so, could the Arcadia mentioned in Poussin’s painting be the American Acadie?

When doing some research on WWII for Aleph, I found some references to a medieval relic known as The Spear of Destiny. This was a spearhead that was part of the Holy Roman Empire treasures, on display in Vienna’s Schatzkammer (the Imperial Treasury chamber of the Hofburg Palace). According to legend, the spear was part of the actual lance with which Longinus, a Roman legionary, pierced Jesus’ side while on the cross.

The Holy Lance as displayed in the Schatzkammer

It is hard to understand the significance of this lance as a “holy relic”; after all, why should we treasure an object that was used to torture someone? The history of this lance is long and controversial.

A “relic”, from the Latin reliquiae (literally, “remains”) is an object that belonged to or an actual part of a saint’s body. According to Christian tradition, the object has the power to perform miracles. Relics gained importance in the Middle Ages for two reasons. First, because of the emergence of hagiography as a literary genre across Europe. Hagiography (from the Greek hagios, meaning “saint” and graphe, meaning “writing”) as a literary genre included the story of the life of a saint, the miracles performed during his life and those performed by his body after death. These accounts begun in the fourth to sixth centuries AD among some of the first Christian colonies in the Eastern part of the Roman Empire and later spread to Western Europe. In France and Italy, these accounts spread across a much wider audience because they were translated into the vernacular, the language used by common people at the time. Much of the medieval hagiographical material was didactical and some of it was used to promote pilgrimages to the holy relics. Santiago de Compostela in Spain is a good example.

Pilgrimages to the Holy Land were the second reason for the development of relics. The first and most famous relic reaching the Holy Roman Empire was a piece of the actual cross unearthed by Helena, emperor Constantine’s mother, when she visited Jerusalem in c.325 AD. The crusades brought another wave of relics to Europe and relics became a profitable trade, exploited by merchants who sold false ones. The Knights Templar were often employed to assess the genuine nature of a relic.

Because of the fall of the Roman Empire and the clandestine nature of the first Christian colonies, it is impossible to know how genuine some relics really are and there are often several copies of the same relic. In the Spear of Destiny’s instance, there are two more known examples of the same relic. One is on display in the Vatican, although the Church has made no claim as to its authenticity, and the other is kept in Echmiadzin, Armenia.

But the key to relics is not their authenticity. Their importance lies in the fact they captured the devotion and imagination of generations of Christians. The lance’s sanctity is linked to its use at a key moment in Christ’s life: his crucifixion. Jesus was crucified on a Friday before Passover. According to Jewish law, execution could not take place on a holy day and his body had to be removed and buried before sunset. To ascertain whether Jesus was dead, a Roman soldier drove a spear into his side, with blood and water spurting forth from the wound. The New Testament passage (John 19:34) doesn’t name the soldier, although he is identified as Longinus in one of the apocripha, the Gnostic Gospels that were not chosen to be part of the orthodox Gospel at the council of Nicea in 325 AD. These texts describe Longinus as a centurion who had served Rome on many campaigns, and who had been assigned to Mount Calvary by Pilate, after his eyesight had deteriorated, preventing him from joining active service.

1680 Russian Icon

These gospels also say that when Longinus withdrew the lance from Jesus’ side and blood spurt forth, a few drops fell into Longinus’ eyes, healing his vision miraculously. Recognising this miracle, Longinus kneeled before the cross. After that day, Longinus left the army and used his status as a Roman citizen to travel across the Empire and tell his story. He was arrested after many years of travel and forced to renounce his faith. He refused to do this and was killed. Centuries later, he was made a Saint by the early Church.

As Sidney Kirkpatrick points out in his book Hitler’s Holy Relics, Longinus’ significance is not in his martyrdom, but in his fulfillment of Zechariahs’ prophecy in the Old Testament:

“And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and pleas for mercy, so that, when they look on me, on him whom they have pierced, they shall mourn for him, as one mourns for an only child, and weep bitterly over him, as one weeps over a firstborn.” Zechariah 12:10

The first historical description of the spear is found in the Life of Saint Mauritius as found in the letter written by Bishop Eucherius to the Bishop of Salvius in 450AD. According to this story, Mauritius was the leader of the Christian Theban legion which had been called from Egypt to Gaul to assist emperor Maximian in putting down a rebellion by pockets of peasant insurgents, sometime during the third century AD. Mauritius was a renowned leader and according to legend he held the Spear of Destiny in many battles.

in the Cathedral of Magdeburg

On the border of France and Switzerland, the legionaries refused to act when they realized that many of the insurgents were Christian. Maximian issued more orders against the Christian population and the legionaries kept refusing to act. The emperor punished them by ordering a decimation first (when every tenth soldier is killed), followed by the complete annihilation of the legion. The village where the martyrdom occurred, Auganum, was renamed Saint Moritz.

By the time Bishop Eucherius wrote his letter, the lance had become a symbol of Christian conquest over paganism. Legends had developed whereby anyone in possession of the lance could control the destiny of mankind. During the tenth century, however, the spear had been replaced by the Holy Grail in medieval narrative as a symbol of Christianity. The spear was stored with the Western Empire crown jewels and became a symbol of monarchy by association with the jewels. In 962, when Otto I rose to the throne as emperor, he used the lance to establish his legitimacy as a ruler.

After the death of Frederick Barbarossa in 1190, the spear disappeared from the chronicles, although von Eschenbach mentioned it in his epic poem Parzifal. The lance and the crown jewels were transferred to Nuremberg for safekeeping in the Renaissance, but were moved to Vienna when Napoleon threatened to occupy Nuremberg and given his stated intent to remove the imperial regalia from the city. After Napoleon’s defeat, the jewels and the spear were sold to the Habsburgs.

But the lance didn’t just draw Napoleon’s curiosity. Ravenscroft argues in his book The Spear of Destiny, that Hitler actually planned the Anschluss in September 1939 in order to steal the spear from Vienna. Unfortunately, however, Ravenscroft work is not referenced and it was discredited in 1982, when he told a reporter that the information he discusses in his book was given to him by a medium. After the war, the lance and the jewels recovered by the US Army returned to Vienna were they remain today.

In a study on Dante’s esoterism, René Guénon mentions two bronze medals, one portraying Dante and the other depicting the Veronese painter Pisanello. The reverse side of each medal bears the initials: F.S.K.I.P.F.T.found in the Victoria and Albert Museum

Guénon interprets the initials as “Fidei Sanctae Kadosch Imperialis Principatus Frater Templarius” and argues that Fidei Sanctae refers to the “Fede Santa” a tertiary order of Templar association whose dignitaries bore the title of “Kadosch”. The latter is the Hebrew word for “consecrated” and is still used for some freemason grades. Guénon believes this was proof that Dante Alighieri was therefore connected to the Templars and this is why he chose Saint Bernard of Clairvaux as his guide in the third book of the Divina Commedia.

Guénon states that the medals he saw were found in Vienna’s Historische Museum. However, a search of this museum’s current online catalogue does not return any of the two medals. The medal representing Pisanello, does appear in a Catalogue of bronzes and ivories of European origin shown by the Burlington Fine arts club in 1879. That catalogue ascribes the medal to Pisanello (1360-1415). Both Morelli and Gruyer believe that the medal is genuine; however, Milanesi and Lenormant believe that the medal was made by Francesco Corradini, not Pisanello, hence the inscription “Franciscus Korradini Pictor Fecit” (from the Lives of Painters by Giorgio Vasari, Blashfield and Hopkins edition, volume II).

Luigi Valli, in his study Studi sui fidele d’amore, I, 1933, suggests that the inscription could refer to the seven virtues, Fides, Spes, Karitas, Justitia, Prudentia, Fortitudo, Temperantia. In his view, this could have held some initiatic meaning.

It is hard to derive a clear cut conclusion from the study of these medals as to whether Dante was a Templar or not. Dante’s work suggests that he might have had knowledge of Kabbalah and other esoteric practices, but there is no hard evidence for it.

Dante’s possible affiliation with Masonry has been explored by two literary critics, Arturo Reghini and Eugène Aroux.

Hermes Trismegistus

At the time they wrote, Europe experienced a revival of esoterism, followed by the birth of secret societies. Esoterism, as it would have been known in the nineteenth century, was “knowledge” only available to an elite of “enlightened” and specially educated people, something akin to Freemasonry.

Different levels of meaning in Dante’s Divine Comedy appealed to nineteenth-century scholars, who sought to find a link between the poet and esoterism. Eugène Aroux (1793-1859) believed that Dante was a heretic and a revolutionary for his times and he applied these beliefs to his study of the Divine Comedy. In Dante: Hérétique, revolutionnaire et socialiste, Aroux draws parallels between Dante’s work and Masonic rites.

For example, he argues that the red, white and green colors (which are the same colors of the Italian flag) worn by Beatrice are the same colors worn by initiates in the Prince of Mercy rite of the Scottish Masons. This rite is also known as the Scottish Trinitarian and it takes place for initiates of the 26th grade. The rite bears the same Trinitarian symbology of Dante’s Divine Comedy (for example, Dante divides his work in three books, of thirty three chapters, and thirty three verses each), which Aroux argues is the symbol of the Trinity (for Christians, the Father, Son and Holy Spirit).

Aroux’s study is very detailed and supported by extensive research. His argument would appeal to those who believe that the roots of freemasonry go back to the Middle Ages or even to Egyptian times. However, one would need to bear in mind two points.

First, we assume that any Hermetic manual would have been written in either Greek or Latin. Canto XXVI of the Inferno, where Dante meets with Ulysses, suggests that Dante might have had no knowledge of Greek and his Latin might have been limited.

Dante and Virgil look down at the VIII circle

Dante looks at the fires in the circle of fraudolent councilors

In this Canto, fraudulent councilors such as Ulysses are enveloped in a tongue of fire. The type of punishment might have been chosen because of a misinterpretation of the Latin words: calliditas (astuteness) and caliditas (heat). Unlike the hero of the Greek Odyssey, who returns to Ithaca after his voyage, Dante’s Ulysses convinces his crew to push past Hercules’ columns and dies by falling off the edge of the world. This story is based on Ovid’s version of Ulysses’ quest in Metamorphosis XIV.

Second, the Scottish rites used in Aroux’ study were only first organized in the 1500s and there is no evidence that they were based on medieval chivalric rites of initiation. Dante, obviously, would have had no access to them when he drafted the Divine Comedy.

Therefore, while Dante uses a great deal of symbolism, we find that there is a much higher chance this would have come to him from medieval philosophers or even from a lay interest in the Kabbalah (which flourished in Southern Europe just after the fall of Jerusalem), than from direct contact with the Masons (as Aroux argued) or the Cathars (as argued by Reghini).


Dante stands by the walls of Jerusalem

It’s impossible to read Dante’s Divina Commedia without entering different levels of meaning. Dante himself warns the reader about the exegetical character of his work: “Il senso di quest’opera non e unico”. 

This is the first of two installments, where we look at the knights Templar in Dante’s work. 

The Templars first appear in the Inferno, Canto XIX, when Dante and Virgil descend to the third pocket of the Eighth Circle, which punishes one of the key crimes of the thirteenth century: Simony. A simoniac sold pardons or holy offices for personal enrichment. In this Canto, Dante criticizes Rome’s nepotism and the Church’s corruption. Popes are being punished in this circle for simony. 

Dante and Virgil meet the simoniacs

One of the Popes Dante meets, Nicholas III, announces that he awaits the arrival of two other Popes: Boniface VIII (who died in 1303, three years after Dante’s fictional journey into Hell) and Clement V (who died in 1314, one month after the last Master of the Temple, Jacques de Molay, was executed). Pope Clement V, previously the archbishop of Bordeaux, was elected Pope in 1305, backed by King Philip IV of France and by French Cardinals in the conclave. Dante calls him a “pastor sanza legge”, because of his connection to the king of France (in line 108, Dante refers to Popes as being the emperor’s ‘prostitutes’ “puttaneggiar coi regi”). 

Here is the key of the Canto: the Church’s ‘prostitution’ to the Empire, for money and power. The separation of temporal and spiritual power was a key aspect of medieval society since Carolingian times. The two roles were to co-exist in balance. Philip IV and Clement V overthrew this balance. This was the political backdrop to the Templars’ demise. As a ‘hybrid’ military order, they did not report to the King. In fact, in 1139 Pope Innocent III declared the knights were independent from any lay and church authority: they would report directly to the Pope. However, Philip IV saw himself outside the Pope’s authority. His predecessor, Charles of Anjou, had even plotted to kidnap the Pope (then Boniface VIII, who Dante places in the same circle as Clement V) and transfer the papacy to France. 

By 1307, Jerusalem was lost to Saladin. Meanwhile, in Europe, the Temple had become a powerful organization, and in France the knights had virtually become the kingdom’s bankers. Two key political events led to 1307. First, Clement V tried to revive Nicholas’ IV plan to merge the Hospitallers and the Templars into one order, reporting to a European king and not to the Pope. Jacques de Molay was opposed to this plan, believing that a king would use the new order for political aims and the Holy Land’s cause would be lost. Second, Templar castles in Armenia reported that the French army might have an interest in marching through that country, to take it over. When Philip IV asked permission for his troops to march through Armenia, the Templars refused to grant them hospitality. The king had also come close to bankruptcy, after having funded the last Crusade. 

On Friday, October 13th, 1307 (which is the origin of Friday the 13th tradition), the French army arrested all Templars in France on account of heresy and the king launched an investigation into the order, which would eventually cause its demise, with Jacques de Molay’s death in 1314. 

Why did Philip IV terminate the Templars? Whatever the reason, Dante’s invective against both Clement V and the King of France remind the reader that their actions were criticised even during their times.

More than eight hundred years ago, a knight brought his horse to a halt and looked at the orange sun disappearing behind the arid cliffs of Jerusalem. Thousands of miles away, another knight watched the sun rise above the fertile plains of Kamakura. One was a Templar, the other a Samurai.

Their cultures developed in parallel but their paths never crossed. Yet, both knights were radical promoters of social change. The two types of warriors have amazing similarities and fine differences that have seldom been examined.

The development of both military classes is deeply rooted in the tradition of honor and shame that was typical of early medieval societies in Europe and Japan. As historian Max Weber pointed out, the combination of honour and fealty was known only in Western European feudalism and Japanese vassallic feudalism. Bellicosity and open displays of violence were common characteristics of both societies.

In Europe, the introduction of Salic Law, with its emphasis on agnatic primogeniture (the oldest son inherits the father’s lands), played a large role in promoting violence. Nobles who did not inherit their own land often raided that of their neighbors. War was a natural outlet for young knights and a way for them to gain territory. Le Charroi de Nimes, a French epic poem of the 12th century, describes this class of young knights as “povres bachelers” who need to fight wars to conquer land.

In Japan, the rise of the Samurai coincided with the development of the estate system (shoen). Large rice- producing estates became hereditary, and exempt from taxation and government interference.

While the Samurai became synonymous with the warrior class and the nobility of the 12th century, the Templar Knight broke completely with social conventions, because he was both a knight and a monk. European feudalism was a strict tripartite society, where there was room only for workers, the nobility, and the clergy. However, with the advent of the First Crusade and the conquest of Jerusalem in 1097, Christian pilgrims needed protection on their way to the Holy Land. This led to the creation of a ‘warrior monk’, who would slay infidels in the name of Christ.

A key difference between the two societies centers on religion. In Europe, the church was a powerful institution. In Japan, no single religion had enough institutional power to offset the state. Despite this key difference, both societies faced the same question at a human level: how can one reconcile the violent act of war with the need to maintain a harmonious balance in society (for the Samurai) or with the need to be charitable towards others (for the Templar). The solution was found in philosophy: for the Templar, the Church clung to Saint Augustine’s precept that war was justifiable if it was deemed necessary to prevent evil doing. For the Samurai, it came in the form of adherence to Confucianism and Zen Buddhism, so that the warrior was able to control his short-term desires for the good of his long-term goals.

Unlike the Samurai, however, the Templar’s fame was short-lived. Once the Christians lost control of Jerusalem and the Crusades ended in defeat, the warrior monk was no longer needed. Unlike his Japanese counterpart, who remained an integral part of society, the Templar fell victim to the same struggle between temporal and secular power that would plague the history of Europe for centuries to come.