Research Web Site

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© composed by Charles Camilleri
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Section 1. The Web Site Layout.

Web Site Map Site Map 
Intercessions Page

Various St John Orders  

Historic Articles, Texts & Pictures

Purpose of this Website   

Russian Grand Priory  

Military Orders Bookshop  

Book Reviews 


Knights Templar  

Chivalric Organisations Links

Crusade Links  

Historic Headquarters of the Order

Archive Research Web Site  

Genealogy & Heraldry, OSJ  

Important Notice

There are two historic lists of members of the Russian Grand Priory shortly after its creation: a list of Commanders of Family (see Go Link button ), and a list of Knights and Commanders (see Go Link button ) . If any reader of Russian descent can see his surname in either of the two lists, and can prove patrilineal descent, please make contact with the web master of this website, as your help will be valuable in further research.

Notification Importante

Il y a deux listes historiques de membres du Grand Prieuré Russe, établies peu après sa création: une liste de Commandeurs de Famille (voir Go Link button  ), et une liste de Chevaliers et Commandeurs (voir Go Link button ). Si quelque lecteur d'origine russe voit sont nom dans l'une ou l'autre de ces deux listes et peu prouver son ascendance directe, qu'il veuille bien rentrer en contact avec le webmestre de ce site, son aide dans les prochaines recherches sera très certainement constructive. 

Section 2. What is New on this Web Site?

Continuous research takes place by various enthusiasts researching the various Orders of St John. A digest of some of the material is given as Historic Articles  ( ). Other useful Web Sites are being discovered, and reciprocal links are being placed. The latest updates will be notified on this Home page.

If you enjoy visiting this Site please send your comments - How can the Site be improved? - what do you think of the Site? are there any broken links? - either, use the Guest Book, or, Email - both these are found in Section 4.

5th April 2009:
* New Internet find - There was a series of Coastal Watch Towers built by the Knights of St John eford - see  Go Link button, this page leads to another page see -  Go Link button .
* The Links to recommended websites had got out of date (as websites occassionally move around) - so updated links have been provided - to follow these goto; Go Link button.
* We report the sad news that Professor Charles Camilleri on 3 January 2009 at the age of 77. Charles Camilleri is considered Malta’s National composer, and was a member of the British Association of the Russian Grand Priory. For his obituary goto -  Go Link button .
* An excellent new book has been published by OSPREY - "Knights of Jerusalem, The Crusader Order of Hospitallers 1100-1565" an excellent hardback book for only £20, and worth every penny - for a review goto; Go Link button.
* A new Grand Master was elected on the 11th March ; His Most Eminent Highness Frà Matthew Festing to whom we sent our warmest congratualtions goto -  Go Link button .
* SAD NEWS. His Most Eminent Highness Frà Andrew Willoughby Ninian Bertie died on the 7th February 2008, for our tribute goto; Go Link button.
* There is an excellent information page on the "Fraters Armigeri Hospitalis - The Brotherhood Esquires of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta". The Home page explains its purpose; "The Fraters Armigeri Hospitalis, also known as the brotherhood esquires of the sovereign military order of Malta, is an iniative to honour those families and their ancestors who served the knights of Malta for century´s as Esquires." The information can be found at: -  Go Link button .
* There are various St John Websites that have produced the Arms of the Grandmasters. One little known version is on a Polish Site. Please goto Go Link button.
* There is an excellent book published "Warriors of the Lord - The Military Orders of Christendom" by Michael Walsh and published by William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2003. see: -  Go Link button .
* On this web site, there is an essay which seeks to explore all known facts about the Hereditary Commanders and the Russian Grand Priory in exile. It seeks to correct the myths and is based on all the known facts to date. Please goto Go Link button.
* Are there any Russian Hereditary Commanders existing in the world today ?- one author thinks not. For the reason the author thinks not, read the well argued essay once displayed in the Journal of The International Academy for the Promotion of Scientific Studies on - Go Link button .
* Do you need to find out who is who, in the world of the self-styled "Orders" - which Order has amalgamated with which - on this Web Site there is a Table of twentyseven "Orders" which through members in common can be traced back to the Shickshinny Convent/Pichel Order. The latest edition on Table 27 is the "Supremus Ordo Domus Hospitalis Sancti Johannis Hyerosolemitani" goto Go Link button
* The Whichard Lecture 2000, on the "The Charitable and Medical Activities of the Hospitallers and Templars, Eleventh to Fifteenth Centuries" can be found at: -  Go Link button .
* Truth stranger than fiction & the Lady behind the man! The Reverend Sir Robert Peat, was a founder (inter alia) of what was to become the "Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St John of Jerusalem". By all accounts Peat was an eccentric person, but his wife, an heiress, Lady Jane Peat (née Smith) cuts an even stranger figure - if you wish to read more, please follow the next link, where Peat is described as a Mr Collins (The Reverend William Collins of "Pride and Prejudice" by Jane Austen, Military Library 1813) - curious? then read about the unsolved murder and goto: -  Go Link button .
* You can find the Portraits of the Grandmasters of the Order of St John, who ruled Malta at: -  Go Link button .
* Paul Alexandrovitch Demidoff (listed in the in the Almanach de St Petersbourg 1913-1914 page 178 as "ancien officier du reg. des chevaliers gardes, commandant Héréditaire de l'Ordre de Malte")  was the first of three generations to maintain the Russian Johannine tradition into exile. A copy of the Diploma of his son can be found on this website see: -  Go Link button .
* The Whichard Lecture 2000, on the "The Charitable and Medical Activities of the Hospitallers and Templars, Eleventh to Fifteenth Centuries" can be found at: -  Go Link button .
* In 1924, HIH Grand Duke Kirill declared himself Emperor of Russia, hoping that event would restore the monarchy in Russia - not for the sake of monarchy but for the sake of Russia itself. This proclamation did much to keep alive the concept of Monarchy in the minds of Russians - a process which is bearing fruit today - for the proclamation - please visit  -  Go Link button .
* Sometimes web pages go missing for a while, as its author switches ISP - what web pages? - the 28 Grandmasters of Malta, and a page on the Maltese Cross- please visit  -  Go Link button and Go Link button .
* If you are a person of prayer, please consider praying for Xander Rhys Lowry age 6 who has lymphoblastic lymphomaeter. The request is made by his parents. For this and other prayer requests please visit  -  Go Link button .
* Peter Alexeivitch Kropotkin (1842-1921), a noted Anarchist (Libertarian Socialist) wrote his "Memoirs of a Revolutionist" 1899, which contains an account of his time in the Corps de Pages.  This is now on the Internet and is covered in nine sections. The link to the following section is found on the bottom of each page. Goto  -  Go Link button .
* What was the role of the Corps de Pages in the survival of the Russian tradition of the Order of St John? One ex Cadet gives his views, and the web page with these views has been published on this site for a few years. However from a book published in 2001, a different view emerges. The new information is posted on the bottom of the article in the form of Notes. Goto  -  Go Link button .
* Maurice Paléologue the last French Ambassador to the Russian Court wrote and published his memoirs. These were translated by F.A. Holt O.B.E. and published in English; Paléologue, Maurice (Author), Holt O.B.E., F. A. (Trans), An Ambassador's Memoirs, New York: George H. Doran Company, 1925. For the entry on Thursday 1st April , 1915, Volume I, Chapter X, Paléologue describes the Church of the Priory of Malta. Rather than give a link to that page, here is the link to the Contents page  -  Go Link button .
* Full coloured portraits of the Grandmasters during their time at Malta can be found on "A Military History of Malta" Website - curious - then goto  -  Go Link button .
* There have been a number of attempts at producing a web site with the complete set of Coats of Arms for the Grand Masters of the Order, including those of the modern Order. There has been no one site, which has completed the task - that is up until now! This site has been put together by a leading member of the Research Team - John Cilia La Corte. Not only are the shields on display - but click through for a portrait and further details on each Grand Master - goto  -  Go Link button .
* Three Book reviews;
1. The Sword and the Scimitar The Saga of the Crusades by Ernle Bradford (Pen & Sword Publisher). (  For the book review goto - Go Link button .
2. Cavalry The History of Mounted Warfare
by John Ellis (Pen & Sword Publisher) (  see -  Go Link button ,
3. The Knight Templar 1120-1312 by Helen Nicholson (Osprey Publisher): see -  Go Link button .
* In 1823, the French Commission (a group of Knights without official sanction from the Order's HQ in Rome) sought to aid the Greek's in gaining independence, and in return to gain Rhodes as the Order's home. The whole plan came to nothing for various reasons, to be explained in a future text on this website. For the secret Treaty goto  -  Go Link button .
* Was Emperor Paul I mad? His detractors say "Yes". Those who wish to examine the issue in depth and come to a considered opinion can do no better that to read; "Tsar Paul and the Question of Madness, An Essay in History and Psychology, Hugh Ragsdale. Contribution to the Study of World History Number 11 Greenwood Press, Connecticut 1988." - how can you get hold of a copy? Easy it is on a free 'pdf' file for all to download: goto -  Go Link button .
* A new series of information files are being prepared on the genuine Russian Hereditary Commanders. The first three of these are now ready;
1. Prince Pierre Ivan Tufiakine, 1769-1845: see -  Go Link button ,
2. Prince Ivan Ivanovitch Bariatinsky, 1772-1825: see -  Go Link button ,
3. Prince Alexandre Mikhailovitch Bélosselsky-Bélozersky, 1772-1825: see -  Go Link button .
More Pages on other Hereditary Commanders are in preparation. Watch this space.

* There are plenty of self-styled "St John Orders" on the Internet - often with domain names that will not come up under a search on the "St John" name, or are so low down in the search engines that they rarely get seen on any search. The "Autonomous Priory of the Sovereign Military Order of Saint John of Jerusalem, Knights of Malta, Ltd." is one such "Order" with its domain. Do visit: .
* There has been an updating of the Self-Styled Order pages, if you wish to explore the "Orders" categorised as such on this Web Site - please visit: -   .
* Now and again you can come across some very genuine pages by enthusiasts - there are a series of pages by Louis Henwood covering a history of Malta (   ).  Louis does provide within this a history of the Knights in Malta until their ejection by Napoleon see page 18 -   . There is one fault with the site and that you have to access each of the following pages via the index! The history concerning the Knights ends with page 27.
* Yet further books have been reviewed - these from the excellent series of books published by Osprey, well know for the quality of their illustrations.
"Armies of the Crusades" which provides a wealth of detail on the many and varied armies which fought in the crusades, including those of Islam. This has been written by Terence Wise, and illustrated by Gerry Embleton. Please see -    - where you will find a BOOK REVIEW .
"The Knights of Christ" covering no less than 17 military Orders of "Warrior Monks" also written by Terence Wise and illustrated by Richard Scollins. An excellent book - to find out more please see -    - where you will find a BOOK REVIEW .
* A new book on the Knights Templar by Sean Martin has been published by "Pocket Essentials" - to find out more about this book please see -    - where you will find a BOOK REVIEW .
* Archaeopress at the end of last year have re-published Cecil Torr's book on Rhodes: "Rhodes in Modern Times". First Published in 1887, the revised edition has additional material, including a prologue by Elias Kollias. The new edition is edited by Gerald Brisch. Archaeopress 3rdguides Series, 2003. ISBN 0 9539923 2 2. Paperback, 274 pages, 5 maps, 10 illustrations. £16.99 (see -    - BOOK REVIEW ).  If you wish to order a copy of the book go to the publishers site : on -  Go Link button . You can telephone orders through on (international) +44 1865 311914, or (uk) 01865 311914.
* Some branches of Freemasonry had claimed that somehow the Orders of the Templar and Hospital had been continued within their ranks. The Orange Order, a kindred masonic organisation also followed suit with its Black Knights/Malta Knights. This latter group entered the North American Scene with the "Ancient and Illustrious Order Knights of Malta". On this Web Site is a copy of one of their history booklets published in 1915. To read it for yourself please goto -    .
* Three Web Pages which have not been featured before on this Web Site:
1) A History of the beginnings of the Order of St John - see Go Link button .
2) A history of the Priory Palace at Gatchina, with various photographs displaying such as the Crown of the Order - see Go Link button .  
3) an informative page on Malta's history with details of Napoleon's invasion of Malta - it has a number historic illustrations - see - Go Link button  .
* New Internet finds - (1) Historic Hospitaller Sites - Kilmainham Hospital, Dublin - see  Go Link button and the Coningsby Hospital, Hereford - see  Go Link button, (2) A very good Site by author Stephen C Spiteri - the Fortress Explorer (mainly Hospitaller, Rhodes and Malta) - goto Go Link button .
* In the 1960s there was an excellent article in the Encyclopaedia Britannica on the Order of St. John of Jerusalem (today the only article is specifically about the Sovereign Military Order of Malta). Happily a license has been granted for this Web Site to display the original article. It is intended also to provide other articles on the Order, but from books now out of copyright : For the Britannica Article see Go Link button.

With around 500 Web pages on this Web Site, and Links to many other Web Sites,
there is much much more to see, so explore the Web Site and enjoy!


Section 3. Recommended Web Sites

Highly Recommended - must see - Web Sites   

Section 4. Help Needed, Notices, Comments or suggestions


This Web Site provides free access to the general Web browsing public and is run as a public service. However the costs of the ISP, telephone, plus research materials, are around £1200 (sterling) per year. In the past this has been met by the Web Master, who cannot really afford to keep the Site going.

Please email if you can help. Around £500 is kindly donated each year and is of great assistance.

Eventually a commercial sponsor will be found, especially in the light of the increased traffic on the site (250+ visitors per day, 1750+ per week). Any such commercial sponsor will be carefully picked, and will be a single sponsor. The intention is not to clutter the Site with Adverts. However in the meantime, the money to run the Site must be found. Please email if you can help.

Thanks to a kind benefactor, a Lap-Top Computer has been donated to assist with the research work. This will speed up some of the editing for this Web Site, and assist on visits to archives. However, more are needed, so those in training to be Nurses, can be supplied with one - a very appropriate gift for such students, especially given by anyone with a connection to a hospitaller Order!

Please email if you can help.


Research Assistance  (Volunteers - unpaid!) is much needed. Especially needed are those who can have easy access to research Libraries (such as the British Library, or University Libraries). Access to source documents is needed to further the work.


Volunteer Internet Research Assistance are also needed. All the links on this Site need testing for defunct URLs. The World Wide Web needs searching for any Web Sites not covered by this Site, or relocated URLs for Sites covered which have moved.


Volunteer translators are needed. English/Russian, English/French, English/German, English/Italian. Tasks: (1) translating original source material into English. (2) translating Web pages on this Site into Russian, French, German, and italian.


To further the detailed research on the King Peter Order(s), a copy of the May 1965 Constitution (Amending that of March 1964) of the King Peter Order, and a copy of the 1968 Constitution (about 40 pages long) and any of its various amendments, used by the same organisation and its offshoots 1970 onwards, are needed. Please email details if you can help. Email details below.

Can anyone provide the date and place of publication for the following book? - Schembri, Guzeppi. The Malta and Russian Connection. A History of Diplomatic Relations between Malta and Russia (XVII - XIX cc.) based on Original Documents. Grima Publications - see .

For comments or suggestions either;

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