Online Encyclopedia

BAPHOMET

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V03, Page 364 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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BAPHOMET  , the imaginary

symbol or idol which the Knights
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Templars were accused of worshipping in their secret
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rites . The
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term is supposed to be a corruption of Mahomet, who in several
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medieval Latin poems seems to be called by this name . J. von Hammer-Purgstall, in his Mysterium Baphometis relevatum, &c., and Die Schuld der Templer, revived the old charge against the Templars . The word, according to his interpretation, signifies the
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baptism of Metis, or of fire, and is, therefore, connected with the impurities of the Gnostic Ophites (q.v.) . Additional evidence of this, according to Hammer-Purgstall, is to be found in the architectural decorations of the Templars' churches . An elaborate criticism of Hammer-Purgstall's arguments was made in the Journal
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des Savans, March and
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April 1819, by M . Raynouard, a well-known defender of the Templars .

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