The modern surviving entity of the ancient Order of Saint John – PART 1

Nobiliary law - Adelsrecht - Droit nobiliaire

This article addresses the question, to what extent the ancient Order of Knights of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem, also known as Knights Hospitaller, has one or more modern surviving entities.

Originally, the Knights Hospitaller were a medieval religious Order (Merriam-Webster: a group of people united in a formal way), but gradually, its military dimension became more dominant. The Knights Hospitaller had their headquarters in Jerusalemuntil 1291 (after the fall of Jerusalem), on Rhodesfrom 1310 until 1522, onMaltafrom 1530 until 1798 and inSaint Petersburgfrom 1799 until 1803. Today, several organizations continue the Hospitaller tradition, and many claim to be a legitimate continuation of the medieval Knights Hospitaller.

Historical background

In order to understand the context of the formation of the Knights Hospitaller, this article summarizes Jerusalem’s history since Alexander the Great (356–323 BC).

Hellenic period

Jerusalem fell under Hellenistic control and influence when Alexander the…

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