Priory of St. Clair

The Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem ®


The ceremony of knighthood, of which, the installation and investiture of postulants of this order is in commemorative emulation, developed with the grander of the military orders of state. Thomas Costain, in The Three Edwards, describes the development by the time of Edward III:

   "Conferring knighthood had developed into a complicated and rather beautiful ceremony since the beginning, and then the accolade -  tap on the shoulder with a sword - had sufficed. It began the previous evening when the candidate was shaved and taken to a special chamber where a special bath was prepared with scented water and a covering of linen and rich cloths. While he bathed, two old knights talked to him solemnly about the duties of the order.  Later still, he was led to the chapel, where he stood throughout the night, watching over his armor and saying prayers and meditating.  At the break of day he bathed again, confessed, heard mass, and offered a taper with a piece of money stuck in the white tallow.  With his future squire riding before him and carrying the sword and golden spurs, which were to be attached to his heel; he made his way to the great hall.  Here he knelt on one knee and was given the accolade."

In the Priory of St. Clair, a person interested in being a part of the Order attends a Postulant Seminar in the Spring prior to the their investiture in the Fall. This is the modern analogy of the "two knights talking to the Postulant about the duties of the order," the prospective member is contacted approximately two months later to see if they wish to proceed with the investiture, or not. 

The investiture is a formal (black tie) event in the Fall of the year where approved applicants (Postulants) receive the accolade and are accorded the honor of becoming a Knight or Dame of the Order during a sacred ceremony known as a Covenant and Investiture.  It is a solemn rededication and spiritual renewal, during which the new Postulants are received into our Order.

Guests are welcome at the investiture ceremony.

The Order invests membership upon only those men and women who deport themselves in an honorable and chivalrous manner, who will be committed to the Order's values and precepts, and who are Ecumenical in thought.

The ceremony is followed by a formal dinner in which the Order and newest Knights and Dames are celebrated. 




Priory of St. Clair



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