Maritime Templar activities in southern France

From the 1110s for the Hospital, two decades later for the Temple, the commanderies invested in the cities and in particular their port, fluvial or maritime, of coastal Provence. The presence of the Orders is best documented in cities such as Marseille, Saint-Gilles, Arles and Avignon.

This documentation reflects above all the image of the Orders being landowners, deeply attached to the land. In addition exploitation of aquatic resources, such as fisheries and salt farms, becomes clear, both self-consumption of religious communities and for sale.

In later years transport of pilgrims, men and equipment on ships chartered by military orders was certainly the most lucrative activity for crusading ports like Saint-Gilles and Aigues-Mortes. From the 1230s onwards the rich archives of the city of Marseille highlight the close ties that the merchants there had developed with the two Orders and the activity of the one dozen ships that these Orders maintained in the port.

Source this paper. Illustration Templar sites in South France source 

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