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In 1307, Philip IV of France arrested the Knights Templar, a holy order dedicated to retaking Jerusalem, on charges of blasphemy, idolatry, and sodomy. Since then, speculation about the order's practices has been widespread, with various authors calling them either martyrs or sorcerers. Here, Frale, a historian at the Vatican Secret Archives, provides a new history of this mysterious order. Though other books, most notably Malcolm Barber's The New Knighthood, provide a more comprehensive examination, Frale draws on newly discovered legal documents from the archives relating to the Templars' initiation ceremony. These documents are crucial for understanding the charges against the knights. Frale tantalizes us with hints of further research underway on her part, relating to other aspects of the legend, but the bibliographic notes in this book are insufficient for tracking down what information came from which source heretofore. Overall, though, the work is a solid contribution on a topic where misinformation is rife and where there is little comparable material available in English. Readers interested in the history behind Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code will find this book illuminating. Suitable for public and academic libraries.