Knights of the Apocalypse

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Cavalieri dell'Apocalisse
Formation 1693
Dissolution 1694
Headquarters Brescia, Lombardy, Repùblica Vèneta
Monarch of the Holy Trinity Agostino Gabrino

The Knights of the Apocalypse (Italian: Cavalieri dell'Apocalisse) was a short-lived Italian religious society, founded in 1693 by Agostino Gabrino, "professedly for the defence of the Roman Catholic church against Anti-Christ."[1][2] The order was suppressed in 1694 by the Roman Inquisition.

References

  1. Knight, Charles, ed. (1833), Penny Cyclopaedia of the Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge, 2, London: Charles Knight, p. 163, https://archive.org/stream/ThePennyCyclopaediaOfTheSocietyForTheDiffusionOfUsefulKnowledge/ThePennyCyclopaediaOfTheSocietyForTheDiffusionOfUsefulKnowledgeVolume02Andocides-Athanagilde#page/n173/mode/2up, retrieved 2016-05-05, "APO'CALYPTIC KNIGHTS (Cavalieri dell'Apocaisse) were a secret society, formed A.D. 1693, professedly or the defence of the Roman Catholic church against Antichrist. The founder of the Apocalyptic order was Agostino Gabrino, the son of a merchant at Brescia. When, on Palm Sunday, 1693, in the church of St. Peter at Rome, the antiphony of Ps. xxiv was sung: ‘Quis est iste rex gloriea?’ ‘Who is that king of glory?’ Agostino Gabrino stepped urvvard with a drawn sword among the ecclesiastics, crying out, ‘Ego sum rex gloriae’; ‘I am king of glory.’ In a similar manner he disturbed public worship in the church of St. Salvator, and was, therefore, confined in a madhouse. A woodcutter belonging to the Apocalyptic knights laid information before the Inquisition against his order; by his tribunal the order was suppressed in 1694, and the Knights confined in prison. About eighty knights, most of whom were tradesmen and labourers, wore constantly a sword at their side, even during menial occupations, and a star upon their breast. This star had seven corners and a tail, and was surrounded by a golden thread, which circle represented the terraqueous globe. The tail of the star represented the sword seen by St. John in the Apocalypse. This order has been accused of an intended rebellion against the papal government and the higher ranks. Agostino Gabrino, called monarch of the Holy Trinity, intended to introduce polygamy, and his knights were to marry pure virgins only. The history even of such a set of madmen is not without its uses: ignorance and fanaticism will, in all ages, produce the same fruits. (See Tenzel's Monatliche Unterredungen for the year 1694, pp. 672-677, and of 1697, p. 883, &c.: Ersch and Gruber's Ency.)" 
  2. Dell'Abate di Berault-Bercastel, ed. (1824), Storia Del Cristianesimo, 28, Florence: Presso Francesco Alessandri, p. 251-252, https://books.google.com/books?id=jL_UHJDXPXoC&pg=PA251, retrieved 2016-05-05, "Insorse in questo medesimo tempo, nel mezzo di Roma, una società intera di fanatici, i cui membri si denominarono i cavalieri della Apocalisse. Agostino Gabrino di Brescia, loro capo, si faceva chiamare ora il monarca dell Trinità, ora il principe del numero settenario. Un dì del le Palme, trovandosi in chiesa, e cantan dosi l'antifona, chi è questo re della gloria, egli corse colla spada alla mano verso i cantori, gridando che era egli quello. Fu preso con ragione per pazzo; e senza far romore, e senza gridare contro l'errore, nè contro l'eresia, fu messo sotto custodia. Peraltro i cavalieri della Apocalisse erano già in numero di ottanta, e portavano sul loro abito e sopra i loro mantelli le armi de loro ordine, cioe un bastone di comando e una sciabla incrocicchiati, con una stella e i nomi raggianti degli angeli Michele, Gabriele e Raffaele. Si dicevano suscitati per difendere la Chiesa contro l'Anticristo, ch'era vicino a farsi adorare. Proponevano altri principi di sovversione, tanto più pericolosi, perchè gli accredita vano col loro ardore a sollevare tutti quelli che si trovavano in qualche necessità. Dopo la prigionia del loro capo, un povero taglialegne che s'era lasciato impegnare in questa setta, svelò tutto quel che sapeva dei suoi misteri; furono arrestati circa trenta di questi illuminati, e tutto il rimanente si disperse."