Whenever we see a pirate ship on television, cinema or in comic books we also see an extremely ancient symbol – the skull and crossbones. This however, was not a symbol of death or indeed poison but instead it profoundly symbolized life in so many aspects. 450 bushmaster ammo

It was in fact used by the infamous Templars.

But, I wondered, what explanation did the Knights Templar give for using the symbol? Where did they get it from? I found a strange tale that is told by most Templar researchers to link the symbol to them and this tale surprisingly involves the number 9, a mother earth image and a skull.

In The Holy Blood and The Holy Grail, Baigent, et al tell the tale:

‘A great lady of Maraclea was loved by a Templar, A Lord of Sidon; but she died in her youth, and on the night of her burial, this wicked lover crept to the grave, dug up her body and violated it. Then a voice from the void bade him return in nine months time for he would find a son. He obeyed the injunction and at the appointed time he opened the grave again and found a head on the leg bones of the skeleton (skull and crossbones). The same voice bade him ‘guard it Well, for it would be the giver of all good things’, and so he carried it away with him. It became his protecting genius, and he was able to defeat his enemies by merely showing them the magic head. In due course, it passed to the possession of the order.’

In another version this Lord of Sidon actually ritualistically marries the corpse.

Now such stories are naturally seen as macabre and the ‘hidden message’ therefore still evades us – which is the idea. But as I was to discover, what is really being conveyed in these stories, is the importance of the union or balance, which creates a state of enlightenment akin to that spoken of by the Gnosics, alchemists and mystics. [1]

I turned firstly to the main character in the tale, the infamous Lord of Sidon.

As a Titular metropolis of Pamphylia Prima, Sidon, dates as far back as Neolithic times. In the tenth century B.C. Sidon had its own coinage that bore the head of Athena (also Minerva a serpentine, feminine deity linked with healing.) I found that Athena was indeed the patroness of the city even though its people were sometimes termed ‘a piratical horde’ and Constantine Porphyrogenitus called Sidon a ‘nest of pirates.’ However the place did go on to play host to one of Alexander the Great’s garrisons for a while, which was used to subdue this piratical element for Alexander’s own purposes. Under his successors Sidon became known as the ‘holy city of Phoenicia’ and enjoyed relative freedom, with games and competitions attracting people from far and wide.