900-year-old sword set to sell for $500,000

Written by By Tom Butler, CNN Written by

A 900-year-old sword of the legendary crusader Knight Templar is set to fetch $500,000 when it goes under the hammer at Bonhams in London next month.

The amber-colored double-edged sword, or Marlborough, was crafted from the finest gold of the finest precious metals and is being sold by antiquities dealer Roger Walton.

The sword will be sold alongside its coachmen’s trilby and red cloth shoulder shawl, which was once worn by the famous knight and will each carry a price tag of $50,000.

Knight Templars

The owners of the artifacts, who wish to remain anonymous, are said to be wealthy collectors of rare treasures and antiques, Walton said.

The warriors of the Knights Templar were a famous Christian brotherhood that was one of the most powerful religious orders of the Middle Ages.

The Templars were from a medieval order of knights dispatched to the Holy Land to protect Christians and convert Muslims to Christianity

During one of their escapades in Jerusalem in 1187, they captured the bishop of Acre, who they destroyed with an axe handle. Their leader, Thomas Cook, was killed during the battle, but the sword was later returned to the Crusaders.

‘Stirring evidence’

The sword was discovered in 2003 by Edward Aschbacher , an American-Australian diver who had become curious about the decaying treasure of a schooner, which had sunk near the Canary Islands during the Spanish Armada in the 1500s.

Ahead of the sale, Walton said the sword “may well be the only known sword that has been discovered with the complete head of Thomas Cook (the Templars’ leader in Spain).”

“Its unique and storied provenance is palpable,” he said in a statement. “And it is increasingly turning heads as our clients search out new artifacts that relate to a historic British time.”

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