Temple Church, London

Exterior Detail with Knights
view all photos »

This 12th-century Norman church, known for its rare round shape, was built by the Knights Templar and contains several fascinating details.

Go Historic ID
319082
Short URL
gohist.co/319082
Names
Temple Church
Address
Inner Temple Lane, King's Bench Walk
London, England
EC4
Postcode
EC4
Coordinates
51.513186° N, 0.110442° W
Email
verger@templechurch.com
Phone
020/7353-3470
Date Published
October 8, 2013
Last Updated
April 11, 2015

Timeline

February 10, 1185

The Temple Church in London is consecrated in a ceremony conducted by Heraclius, Crusader Patriarch of Jerusalem. King Henry II may have been present. The Knights Templar is very powerful in England in this period. The Master of the Temple sits in parliament as the "first baron of the realm" and the Temple compound is regularly used as a residence by kings and by legates of the Pope.

1215

The Temple Church is the scene of important negotiations leading to the signing of Magna Carta.

1240

A newly enlarged chancel is consecrated on Ascension Day. The enlargement is primarily intended to provide a suitable resting place for King Henry III, who had indicated a wish to be buried in the Temple Church.

1591

In Shakespeare's play Henry VI, the War of the Roses is sparked by the plucking of two roses in the Temple Church garden.

1666

The Temple Church survives the Great Fire of London unscathed.

1841

The walls and ceiling of the church are renovated in the Victorian Gothic style.

May 10, 1941
German Air Raid Damages Temple Church

At the height of the Battle of Britain in World War II, a German air raid of incendiary bombs damages the Temple Church: the roof of the Round catches fire, which quickly spreads to the nave and chancel. All wooden furnishings are destroyed, except for the Wren altar which is fortunately away at a museum.

November 1958

The Temple Church is rededicated after being fully restored.

2006
Da Vinci Code Filmed at Temple Church

Scenes of The Da Vinci Code movie are filmed at the Temple Church.

April 15, 2006