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Templarism Manual

"The Templars were in turn lions of war and lambs at the hearth; rough knights on the battlefield, pious monks in the chapel; formidable to the enemies of the Light, gentleness itself towards It's friends. Having renounced all the pleasures of life, they faced death with a proud indifference; they were the first to attack, the last to retreat, always docile to the voice of their leader, the discipline of the monk being added to the discipline of the soldier."

  This is a  Manual containing general reference information for Templar Knight characters.  Covers such items as: heraldry, standard greetings, secret greetings, ranks, ceremonial dress standards, duties, and the vows all members have taken.  Attached is commentary to help explain the symbolism and logic behind why the Templar Knights are the way they are.

              The Heraldry is comprised of the Coat of Arms, the Badge, standard, and affiliated symbols. These may be patterened onto surcoats, swords, shields,  cloaks, robes, and perhaps even helms, as well as otherTemplaric items. These are also the same symbols that adorn the faded old stones that create the ruins of Castle Dundrannon, the original home of the Templar Knights. Whenever one sees a shining knight wearing the white habit or surcoat adorned with the Templaric badge (and/or other symbols), then rest assured the Templar Knights have arrived.

                   Coat of Arms -- A Kingfisher clutching a Golden Sword. (A Kingfisher azure clutching a Golden Sword sinister.)

                   Badge -- A Golden Sword.

                  Standard -- A black band above a white band on a square flag.                  

                  Affiliated Symbols -- A White Shield, a Gold/Silver/Red Cross. (Latter: a Cross oro pattee.)

The standard greeting upon meeting another member is "Greetings Brother (Sister)".  This is acceptable regardless of rank.  The Templar Knights is a fraternal organization - the higher ranks are honors to those who have done great service.  And the Grand Master is simply first among equals, a chosen leader who helps direct the organization's progress and development.  A higher ranked member can be greeted as "Greeting Lord Brother" is additional respect is intended.  But this is not required.  It is also common courtesy for a member to supply their name if asked of it by another member - we are proud of who we are, but modest in our claims and wants.

Most members will be known to you. [Looking a titles, or using the "org mem" command].  However, one must be aware that you could encounter an unfamiliar member - or possibly even an imposter.  One claiming to be a fellow member should be willing to give their formal name and rank to you.  One can not judge by Templar Knight equipment since that is somewhat common, and the organization does not yet have unique rank or ID items that bond.  Therefore, the organization does have a "secret" vocal exchange to verify if a stranger is a member.  The exchange is:
Challenge phrase: [Given upon rank advancement]
Password phrase: [Given upon rank advancement]
One should not be too obvious in the use of this challenge since it's effectiveness would be compromised if widely known. Also, sometimes Templars (especially high-ranking Templars) will have tattoos on visible or not-so-visible parts of their bodies [Check descriptions by using "look"].

The Templar Knights have the following ranks.  There is a rough division at "knight" - when one joins the Chivalry of the organization.  The age and level requirements listed with some ranks are minimum requirements.  Members should expect to be known for their proper behavior and deeds as members before reaching such exalted ranks.

Promotions are granted by decision of the Templar Council.  These are based upon an individual's completion of Tasks, showing their personal dedication and worth, service to the Order, esteem of their peers, and general worthiness.

  0 - Enemy      
Reserved for avowed enemies of the organization.
  1 - Retired    
Reserved for members retiring from full active service. They should still be referred to by their last formal rank.  Retired Masters are "Master Emeritus", and retired Grand Masters are referred to honorably as "Past Grand Master".
                    2 - Initiate     
                  All newly enrolled members start at this rank.
  3 - Page     
A rank for members acting in a service capacity only, or younger members not yet qualified for higher rank requirements and needing considerable training.
  4 - Squire
A rank for members acting in a service capacity only, or directly involved in aiding knights in their duties and receiving training from the same.
  5 - Man-at-arms         
A rank for members acting in a service capacity, or for members who  are training for full knight status.
  6 - Serjeant          (Age 18 and Level 20+)
The highest non-knighted rank, reserved for the top members acting in a service capacity, and members training for entrance into the Knighthood.
  7 - Knight          (Age 21 and Level 30+)
The first rank of the Chivalry.  A member full dedicated to the Ancient Order and its aims who has proved himself capable and deserving of special accolade.
                    8 - Banneret Knight
The second rank of the Chivalry. To become a Banneret Knight, a member must demonstrate their honor and fraternity to the Order, and must confront a form of Evil.  Members carry the standard [banner] of the Order into battle- a rectangular flag of a white band below a black band.
  9 - Templar Knight
The third rank of the Chivalry.  Members are those above the average of most knights, and always adhere to and represent the Code of Chivalry.
  10 - Holy Knight
The highest normal rank of the Chivalry.  Members are those who have excelled at their duties.  Often assigned intermediate tasks by the Templar Council to aid in training or organizing expeditions.
  11 - Champion          (Age 25 and Level 70+)
Reserved for extraordinary members.  Some Champions may be reserved a seat on the Templar Council, and most have an additional title reflecting their abilities or deeds.  Many also carry out official offices of the organization.
13 - Master
Highly respected members who have done great service to the organization.  Masters have seats on the Templar Council and are often charged with additional administrative duties and offices.  This is often overall charge of a certain aspect of the organization, like serving as the deputy Grand Master, or Seneschal [also partly in charge of financial matters, with the Grand Master].  The master of each class may be known by a particular title, such as "Master of Doors" for the senior master monk, or "Master of Keyes" for the senior master psionicist. The Seneschal (or other Master designated to do so in the absence of) may issue Council Decrees, and also may issue an annual Financial Report (either with,  instead of, and/or in the absence of  the Grand Master).
15 - Grand Master
The first among equals in the Ancient Order.  The Leader of the Templar Council, he presides over most ceremonies and formal occasions, and always represents the Ancient Order in behavior, act and presentation. May issue a Grand Decree, representing a decision of his position (which is always a solid law), and also may issue Council Decrees, representing decisions of the Templar Council.

Ceremonial Dress
For ceremonial occasions- e.g. knighting ceremonies, formal meetings, and other social gatherings a member of the Ancient Order is expected to dress in particular colors and style to reflect their standing within the organization.  Clothing should be made of wool, linen, or other modest fabrics.  A member is expected to wear a robe of the primary color and a sash of the secondary color; without a cloak.  Gloves of the secondary color are optional.  Informal, and combat dress, are a member's to select, but blue, white (silver), and gold (yellow) are often used to reflect the colors used by the Ancient Order in previous times.

Initiates:                  Brown          Brown
Pages                     White          Brown
Squires                   White          Red
Man-at-arms          White          Green
Serjeant                 White          Black
Knight                      Blue          Gold
Banneret Knight    Blue          Gold; White & Black also
Templar Knight       Blue          Gold
Holy Knight             Blue          Silver
Champion               Blue          Bronze
Master                     Blue          White
Grand Master       Silver          White

Note: Colors selected upon a general symbology. An initiate's status is uncertain, thus a humble brown.  Other non-knights wear white to symbolize the purity they are working to attain, with some distinction among their ranks.  All knights wear blue - the color of the kingfisher (the Templar Knight badge).  The secondary color is gold; but working towards the abasement and purity of the white of the Grand Master.

Note: There are no weapon, or additional equipment requirements for ceremonial purposes.  While swords are a traditional ceremonial knight weapon (and used in the knighting ceremony to represent dispensing justice), the Ancient Order is an organization of more than warriors and should reflect the wider diversity we embrace.

All members of the Ancient Order will have explicit duties and responsibilities corresponding to their rank in the organization, and the vows that they have taken.  One should either be preparing and improving one's own abilities, the organization's abilities, or actively out in the field pursuing the common goals we all share.

The duties of the organization can generally be separated into one of three areas.  Each usually will be in day-to-day charge of a Master or Champion ranked member.  These are the following:

Stewardship (Stewards)
       Preserve Knowledge           [Library]
 The information of old is to be preserved.  And newly collected information is to be copied and added to the store of collected knowledge as                                                                   additional books and maps.
      Teach Knowledge           [Education]
 Members can always benefit from additional training and education in the customs of order, martial skills, wilderness skills, and general lore of the peoples, places, and history of Ellandor.
       Facilities               [Construction, Armory, Stables]
 There is constant labor keeping the necessary stores and materials needed by the Order ready for use.  This includes the gathering of rare materials and         assembly of completed goods.

Exploration (Falcons)
       Seek Knowledge               [Exploration]
  Ellandor is constantly changing.  New settlements are opened, new wonders discovered, the location of ancient ruins found.  These areas need to be found and investigated to see whether old knowledge recovered, new knowledge discovered, or a threat uncovered.
       Collect intelligence on areas    [Scouting]
  The strength and spread of evil needs to be constantly monitored. From this information punitive expeditions can be launched.
                         Retrieve Artifacts               [Excavation]
  It is the duty of the Templar to retrieve, preserve and collect different artifacts and materials, of the Ancient Order or else, akin to information, which is to be preserved also.

Protection (Paladins)
       Patrolling               [Road/village]
  The need for this is constant since evil does not rest and there is always a need to keep the roads of Ellandor free and safe for travelers.
       Expeditions               [Clearing evil areas]
  These will be organized in various strengths to keep the growth of evil in check, or as a means of regaining areas that have been overrun by evil influences.

Individuals may also be sent on individual or small group quests at the bequest of a senior member.  Such a quest will be specifically designed to aid the development of the members and organization, be it as an instructional experience, to collect information or materials useful to the Order, or simply as the means for an individual to prove his bravery and resourcefulness.

The Vows
The Vows are taken as solemn oaths by a person intending to join the Ancient Order of the Templar Knights.  He should understand clearly all three vows and what they entail upon his future behavior.  Upon completion of the third vow a person is a member of the Ancient Order, with temporary rank as an initiate.

<I promise to conform my life and actions to live within my own means.  I reject worldly possessions and the temptations that they bring.  To the Ancient Order I cede all beyond the trappings required for me to fulfill my duties and obligations.>
This vow requires the member to live within simple needs and means.  All monies beyond 50,000 gold pieces are to be donated to the order for its uses. [This is intended to fund the repair, expansion, and creation of facilities throughout Ellandor, as well as payments for training and goods for individual Templars/the Order.]  Equipment ownership is not limited, but donating equipment and weapons to the Armory/sharing unused equipment and weapons is appreciated.  Members might also be sent on specific quests to retrieve special equipment for their personal use; or use by others of the Ancient Order.

<I swear to be a true Brother to each member of the Ancient Order, and to give and accept to/from any Brother what I would give and accept myself. >
This vow requires all members to treat all other members as true brothers.  Lend them what they need from whatever you have.  And know that you can expect the same in return.

<I reaffirm that I dedicate all of myself to the pursuit of the pure of Heart.  To seek Justice for all through the Code of Chivalry and steadfast adherence to Honor and my duties as a member of the Ancient Order of Templar Knights, and that I will keep faithfully the secrets of the Templar Knights that become known to me.>
                  The member is pledging themselves to follow and live to their best the Code of Chivalry, their Honor, and dedication to the our sworn duties.  And to                                                                                  
                  fight evil with all out ability.