- "Even when your kind appears to triumph ... Still we rise again. And do you know why? It is because the Order is born of a realization. We require no sorcery. No indoctrination by desperate old men. All we need is that the world be as it is. And this is why the Templars will never be destroyed."
- —Amory Lorch to Albus Dumbledore
The Holy Order of the Knights Templar, also known as the Order of Solomon's Temple, known formerly as the Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon (Latin: Pauperes commilitones Christi Templique Salomonici), or simply as the Templars is a monastic militaristic order of muggle extremists that seek to destroy wizards and witches and create a perfect world order.
The oldest and arguably the largest muggle fanatical group in the world, the Knights Templar were founded in the year 1099 with their initial purpose to reclaim the city of Jerusalem from Saracen control during the First Crusade. In 1129, one member of the group witnessed a wizard using magic and as a result, the Templars began to hunt down and prosecute wizards and witches all around the world for allegedly allying with the devil.
The Order of the Knights Templar became infamous for initiating the Salem Witch Trials in America, a major event in wizarding history that resulted in wizards and witches hiding from muggles in fear of prosecution from thereon. Although they were able to obliviate most muggles about the existence of their kind, they failed to do so to the Templar Order, and to this day they remain the only non-governmental muggle organisation that is aware of the wizarding world and its inhabitants.
In the years following their founding, the Templar Order continued to manipulate the political powers of muggle Europe, using many of their resources for the purpose of hunting down wizards and exposing their world.
The organisational structure of the Knights Templar diverted considerably during the 12th century. Before that, the Templars were collectively led by one Grand Master who had dozens of subordinate Knights under their command. After their reorganisation from a Church-led religious order to an independent one under Jacques de Molay, the Templars grew in strength, and this reflected into a complete revamp of their hierarchy and structure.
In contemporary times, the Templars are divided into numerous departments, or cells. Although their main headquarters are in Jerusalem, the Templars have numerous other holdings in different countries. Their largest strongholds as of 1998 are Damascus (where most of their weaponry is made), London, and Rome.
The overall leader of the Templar Order is the General of the Cross, who is based out in Jerusalem. Each department or cell is headed by a Grand Master, who reports directly to the General of the Cross. The Templars are also divided inside their respective cells. Templar activities are traditionally split up into two branches: political and military. Each branch has a Master heading them, who in turn have multiple subordinates from whom they receive occasional reports, which a Master relays back to the Grand Master who in turn, depending on the importance of said report, personally delivers them to the General. The political branch of the Templars focus mainly on the political manipulation of various governments and puppet-organisations to further fund their operations, and in long-term to expose the wizarding world. A political branch has further cells each headed by a Seneschal who in turn has Clerics who are deployed as undercover agents in the field.
The military branch of the Templars are divided into units, each one headed by a Knight-Commander. A unit is deployed somewhere in the world with the sole purpose of hunting and thinning the wizard population. From high to low, the military ranks of the Templars are Knight-Commander, Knight-Captain, Knight-Lieutenant, Knight-Corporal, and Knight.
The Templar Order as a whole has two long-term goals; exterminate wizardkind and create a perfect world order. To achieve this, the Templars divide themselves into the aforementioned branches, with the political side mainly focusing on manipulating political and religious leaders over the world and the military one utilizing the effects of the political branch to hunt down wizards freely without governmental intervention.
The Templars are an international organisation. Unsurprisingly, this makes communication difficult between departments. To counter this, every Templar can speak Latin fluently and they mostly speak this language when communicating with members from different countries.
The Templars are infamously secretive about who and how they recruit. It is believed that the Grand Masters handpick recruits around the globe depending on supply and demand, in that if the Templars are short on warriors, then they tend to look for people with military backgrounds, for example. In other cases, another Templar may put forward a recommendation to their superiors, who in turn examine a recruit to see if they are worthy of admission. It is currently unknown what becomes of "rejects". The Templars keep their existence and operations highly secret, so if a recruit is seen unfit to be among Templar ranks, they can't let them go and risk that they tell others of their existence. It is unknown if the Templars have anything similar to a Memory Charm, so it is possible that failed recruits are simply executed to avoid risking the Templars' presence.
- King Richard the Lionheart
- Bernard de Clairvaux
- Robert de Sablé
- Jacques de Molay
- Pope Alexander VI
- Cesare Borgia
- Sultan Ahmed
- Laureano de Torres y Ayala
- François-Thomas Germain
- Aaron Morin
- Henry Ford
- Ransom E. Olds
- Karl Dönitz
- Lutz Graf Schwerin von Krosigk
- Winston Churchill
- Mustafa Kemal Atatürk
- Amory Lorch
- New York
- Saint Petersburg
- Los Angeles
- The Hague
- General of the Cross
- Grand Master