Thursday, 19 April 2012

The Spear Of Destiny

Known by many other names including Holy Lance, Holy Spear, Lance of Longinus, Spear of Longinus or Spear of Christ is reportedly the spear mentioned in the Gospel of John; that pierced Jesus as he hung dead on the cross.

"Then came the soldiers, and brake the legs of the first, and of the other which was crucified with him. But when they came to Jesus, and saw that he was dead already, they brake not his legs: But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water. And he that saw it bare record, and his record is true: and he knoweth that he saith true, that ye might believe. For these things were done, that the scripture should be fulfilled, A bone of him shall not be broken." (KJV John 19:32-36)

The mention, of the spear, in the Gospel Of John is the only mention in the four gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John). But if you look outside the Bible it is mentioned elsewhere.

In The Gospel Of Nicodemus, a gnostic text, it states:

".. and that he was crucified at the place of a skull and two thieves with him, and that they gave him vinegar to drink with gall, and that Longinus the soldier pierced his side with a spear.." (Gospel Of Nicodemus XVI-7)

Where is the spear now? Good question; although there is no real clear answer. There is at present 4 spears that are alleged to be the spear mentioned in the Bible; and that is just the four main ones. There is in actual fact over 20 which claim to be the spear.

The Spears

Reportedly, the Vatican has the spear locked away in their secret vault; which is not that secret seems everyone knows it is under the Vatican. And that is the problem. Nobody has seen it for over 200 years.

Allegedly, in 1492 the Sultan Bayazid II sent it to Innocent VIII to encourage the pope to continue to keep his brother and rival Zizim (Cem Sultan) prisoner. At this time great doubts as to its authenticity were felt at Rome, because of the presence of other rival lances in Paris, Nuremberg, and Armenia. In the mid-18th century Benedict XIV states that he obtained from Paris an exact drawing of the point of the lance, and that in comparing it with the larger relic in St. Peter's he was satisfied that the two had originally formed one blade. This relic has never since left Rome, where it is preserved under the dome of Saint Peter's Basilica, although the Church makes no claim as to its authenticity. No claim of authenticity but the Vatican wont let anyone see it either; which means they either know it is a fake or they don't want some thieving git to get their hands on it.

The location of the second spear is Vienna; to be more precise it is in the Hofburg Palace in Vienna.

The lance (also called the Lance of St Maurice, the Holy Lance of Hapsburg and the Hofburg Spear) is preserved among the Reichkleinodien (Imperial Regalia) of the house of Hapsburg at the Treasure House (Schatzkammer) of the Hofburg museum in Vienna. The spearhead consists of two parts held together by a silver sheath. A nail has been inserted into the blade and held in place by gold, copper and silver threads. The enshrined nail is purported to be one of the nails of the Crucifixion that St Helena was reputed to have found at Calvary and brought to Milan. A silver band with the inscription "Nail of Our Lord" was later added based on the belief that this was the lance of Constantine the Great, which enshrined the nail used for the Crucifixion found by Helena, his mother.

Around 1350, by order of Charles IV, a golden sleeve inscribed with "Lancea et clavus Domini" ("Lance and nail of the Lord") was put over the silver one. The base of the spearhead is embossed with gold crosses.

The first mention of the Vienna Lance, the Hofburg Spear, is in the Saxon Chronicles when it is the prized possession of Otto the Great, who carried it as a talisman in the battle of Lech when his army defeated the Mongol horde. It was mentioned again when Pope John XII used it to bless Otto, touching his shoulder with it in a holy rite to establish Otto's claim to be Holy Roman Emperor.

A Holy Lance (in Armenian Geghard) is now conserved in Ejmiadzin, the religious capital of Armenia. The first source that mentions it is a text "Holy Relics of Our Lord Jesus Christ", in a thirteenth century Armenian manuscript. According to this text, the spear which pierced Jesus was to have been brought to Armenia by the apostle Thaddeus. The manuscript does not specify precisely where it is kept, but the Holy Lance gives a description that exactly matches the lance, the monastery gate, since the thirteenth century precisely, the name of Geghardavank (Monastery of the Holy Lance).

In 1655 the French traveler Jean-Baptiste Tavernier was the first Westerner to see this relic in Armenia. In 1805, the Russians took the monastery and the relic was moved to Tchitchanov Geghard, Tbilisi, Georgia. It was later returned to Armenia at Ejmiadzin, where it is always visible to the museum Manougian, enshrined in a reliquary of the seventeenth century.

This Ejmiadzin Lance has never been a weapon. Rather, it is the point of a sigillum, perhaps Byzantine, with a diamond-shaped iron openwork Greek cross. Why a Roman soldier would be carrying a Greek lance is beyond the scope of this post.

Another lance has been preserved at Krakow, Poland, since at least the 13th century. However, German records indicate that it was a copy of the Vienna lance. Emperor Henry II had it made with a small sliver of the original lance. Another copy was given to the Hungarian king at the same time.

The story told by William of Malmesbury of the giving of the Holy Lance to King Athelstan of England by Hugh Capet seems to be due to a misconception.

The History Surrounding The Spear

The remarkable history of the lance and its singular use at Golgotha nurtured a unique legend, which gained strength in the subsequent centuries. Especially, the idea that whoever possessed it and understood the powers it served held the destiny of the world in his hands for Good or Evil. That is, the idea that the Spear was a great, mystic talisman of World-Historic Destiny and so was verily the Spear of Destiny.

The one with the best history is the Vienna spear. the lance was possessed by a series of successful military leaders including Theodosius, Alaric (who was responsible for the sacking of Rome), Charles Martel (who defeated the Moslems in 733 AD), Charlemagne and Frederick Barbarossa.

A legend grew around the lance that whoever possessed it would be able to conquer the world. Napoleon attempted to obtain the lance after the battle of Austerlitz, but it had been smuggled out of the city prior to the start of the fight and he never got a hold of it. According to the legend, Charlemagne carried the spear through 47 successful battles, but died when he accidentally dropped it. Barbarossa met the same fate only a few minutes after it slipped out of his hands while he was crossing a stream.

On March 14, 1938, after he had risen to power as the chancellor of Germany, Hitler annexed the state of Austria and ordered that the spear, along with the rest of the Habsburg collection, be sent to the city of Nuremberg, heart of the Nazi movement.
After having declared Austria to be a part of the Third Reich the Austrian born Adolf Hitler had the lance loaded on to an armored SS train and taken to Nuremberg on October 13, 1938. There it remained in St. Catherine's Church for the next 6 years until it was removed to a safer, protective underground vault where Lt. Walter William Horn, army serial number 01326328, of the United States Army took possession of it in the name of the US government at 2:10 PM on April 30, 1945; the same day Adolph Hitler and a woman named Eva Braun were reported to have committed suicide in a bunker outside Berlin. It is also the same day that Munich was captured by Patch’s 7th Army unit. Also, on April 30th, 1945, Germany surrendered ending the Third Reich.

With the fall the Soviet Union, and the opening up of Soviet archives in addition to recent testimony by former Soviet soldiers who actually captured Hitler's Bunker in Berlin, we have finally been able to confirm that at approximately 3:30 PM, just 80 minutes after the United States took possession of the Spear, that Hitler committed suicide by shooting himself in the head.

Today the Holy Lance has been returned to the Hofburg Museum. Is it authentic? General George S. Patton thought so. He became fascinated by the spear after the war and had its history traced.

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