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Hughes de Payens

Hughes de Payens (died 1136) was the first Grand Master of the Knights Templar, and was one of the original nine knights.

The other knights were Geoffrey de St. Omer[?], Payen de Montdidier[?], Archambaud de St. Agnan[?], Andre de Montbard[?], Geoffrey Bison[?], and two men recorded only by the names of Rossal[?] and Gondamer[?]. The ninth knight remains unknown, although some have speculated that it was Hugh Conte de Champagne[?].

It is likely that Hughes de Payens served in the army of Godfroi de Boullion[?] during the First Crusade. After rising to Grand Master, he went on to lead the Order for almost twenty years until his death in 1136, helping to establish the Order's foundations as an important and influential international military and financial institution. For example his visit to London in 1128 not only raised men and money for the order, but he also founded their first house there, initiating the history of the Templars in England.

see also: Jacques de Molay -- Bernard of Clairvaux -- Cistercians



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