…Order of the Dragon!
Founded back in 1408 on December 12, it was designed along the lines of the orders who fought in the Crusades. Sigismund, the King of Hungary was having a problem or two with the Ottoman Turks. He needed some ready soldiers to do battle with the Muslim Hordes invading his land.
The battle had been raging for centuries, and Siggy was tired of it.
Of course, after he died 30 years later, the order lost popularity, people dropped out, new recruits were hard to find, you know, you raise your kids, give them every thing, and what do they do? Choose different values.
The order had a resurgence of sorts when Constantinople fell to the Turks. Hungary, or the beginning of the Holy Roman Empire took most of the hits.
Interestingly enough, the order was supposed to be a Christian order. But many of its trapping are Satanic. The dragon itself is a picture of Satan in the Christian Bible.
It’s insignia looks like a tattoo Cher might wear.
And there were some unsubstantiated reports of blood ceremonies and inductions rituals that smack of Anton LaVey. The order had some pretty nasty characters as members as well.
Vlad the Impaler was one.
Vlad, you may recall was the model for Dracula. He murdered members of his own family to get to the throne, and earned the name impaler honestly.
Then there was Oswald von Wolkenstein, he was a composer, poet, and diplomat.
He was also a brawler, fighter, and thug. A great warrior, he is considered one of the most important composers of the early Renaissance period. Much of his poetry was ‘angry’, he had little respect for property, taking all he could…and killing a few people who made the mistake of getting in his way. A native of the Tyrol (Switzerland) he died of heat stroke!
There were many others who played a part in Europe’s history, killing, marauding and pillaging their way over the Alps and back in search of Turks to dispatch.
Most historians believe the Order died out early in the 17th Century, but some swear there are factions around the world today.
Give a whole new meaning to the Year of the Dragon doesn’t it?