Biot and the Templars

Biot and the Templars

In France, the town of Biot on the Cote d’Azur was an important site for the Templars. The first signs of the presence date back to the 12th century and several buildings built at that time still stand in the town today.

This relationship between the Knights Templar and Biot dates back to 1209, when the enjoyment of some of Biot’s land was donated to them by Alfonso II, Count of Provence.

A few years later in 1233, the Order established itself in the old Chateau in Biot, a building that still bears witness to the Templar’s history in the town.

Until 1260, thanks to donations, the Land owned by the Templars of Biot extended to Villeneuve-Loubet, via the Gulf of Biot. The territory of Biot was thus created.

At the dawn of the 14th century, the Templars were accused of opulence due to their unpopularity and their vast wealth. In 1307, they were accused of heresy and corruption by King Philip IV. They were arrested on the order of Charles II (Charles the Lame), Count of Provence, and were imprisoned in Perthuis. The buildings in Biot were seized and used for various purposes over the centuries.

Despite the efforts to erase every trace of their presence, several buildings still bear witness to the history of the Templars in Biot, especially the Chapelle des Pénitents Blancs [Chapel of the White Penitents], built on the ruins of the old Templar preceptory. Additionally, fragments of frescoes have been conserved in the current buildings.

The history of the Templars in Biot is a fascinating account of the importance of this town in French medieval history. Their presence has left an architectural and cultural heritage that continues to be appreciated by the inhabitants and visitors today.

Biot village celebrates the Templars every year with a mediaeval fair and re-enactments of the donation of Biot and other events in local Templar history.

There are classical music and choral music concerts, lectures and discussions, and religious services as well as the usual craftsfolk, living history troupes, acrobats and street perfomers,