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The title of this article is conjecture. Although the subject of this article is canon, no official name for it has been given.

"Are you familiar with the Templars? One of several Knightly orders formed during the Crusades. History teaches they were disbanded nearly 200 years ago in France. Only they weren't. Merely pushed underground where they continued their nefarious work."
―Mario Auditore speaking about the official end of the Templar Order to his nephew Ezio, 1478.[src]-[m]

The Persecution of the Templars was a purge of the Knights Templar by the combined forces of the Parisian Brotherhood of Assassins and King Philip IV of France.

On 13 October 1307, the French Assassins, through their Mentor in the King's court, Guillaume de Nogaret,[1] manipulated the Crown into declaring the Templar Order as heretical; something made all the easier by a damning testimony provided by the Benedictine prior Esquieu de Floyrac from his imprisonment with a renegade Templar,[2] and the fact that Philip IV was heavily indebted to the Order at the time.[3] Led by the future Mentor Thomas de Carneillon, the French Assassins disguised themselves as Flemish mercenaries[4] and assaulted the Temple in Paris, either killing or arresting all who were present at the Parisian Templars' headquarters.[5]

Jacques de Molay, the Templar Grand Master and a Sage, was apprehended by the Assassins, though not before ordering his advisor to hide the Codex Pater Intellectus and a Sword of Eden.[5]

The purge finally drew to a close on 18 March 1314, when Jacques de Molay and Geoffroi de Charney were burned at the stake,[5] charged with heresy and worship of the idol Baphomet.[3]


Recognized as a possibility even before its execution, the purge destroyed the public image of the Order of the Knights Templar, and drove the Order to adopt the same tactics as its bitter rivals, the Assassins, by moving underground. Operating in secret, the Templars survived and gradually rebuilt their Order, which spread across Europe.[6]

With the Templars officially disbanded, their smaller chapters and front groups likewise fell apart or moved underground. One such example was the Brothers of the Cross, a monastic order operating in Germany as the Black Death ravaged the country. They sought the Ankh, a Piece of Eden rumored to have unparalleled healing powers, only to abruptly disappear without a trace in 1350.[7]

In April 1478, the Italian Assassin Mario Auditore recounted the tale of the Knights Templar and their downfall to his nephew Ezio,[8] who at the time did not fully understand how the supposedly-extinct order played a role in the murder of his brothers Federico, Petruccio, and father Giovanni,[9] whom he believed was no more than a banker[8] for the Auditore International Bank.[10]

By 1776, the Parisian Templars had reformed such that they once again challenged the strength of the Assassins in France.[6] In 1789, the Parisian Rite, led by François-Thomas Germain, another Sage who shared memories with Jacques de Molay, instigated the French Revolution in order to avenge themselves against the French crown.[6] This vengeance was obtained in 1793, when King Louis XVI was guillotined in the public gardens outside the Louvre.[11]