This is a question I have been asked many times since my first novel, “Knights of the Saltier – Book 1 of the Order of the Saltier Trilogy,” was released in 2010. Is the Order real? Does it actually exist? Where is it based? How can I join? At the urging of several of my readers, I decided to reveal some background information of this enigmatic group of people who secretly fight for freedom and justice.
The Order of the Saltier is a Secret Society and its activities remain unspoken to non-members at all times. The veil of secrecy is necessary to mask the activities of the Order and shield its members, called “Knights,” from scrutiny by those who do not share the aims and purposes of the Order or would wish to impede the Order’s activities.
What is a Saltier?
A “saltier” is a heraldic term for the Cross of St. Andrews, which is a cross in the form on an “X” rather than the Roman “T” shaped cross. The flag of Scotland, which is a white St. Andrew’s cross on a blue field, is referred to as the “Saltier.” The Order Badge is a Crimson Cross Saltier, Fimbriated, with a Knight’s Crown at each tip. The Crimson Cross symbolizes the blood shed in the cause of freedom. The four crowns symbolize Freedom, Justice, Rightness, and Fidelity, which are the four pillars of the Order.
The Order Crest is a Crimson Renaissance Eagle clutching the Order Badge. The eagle symbolizes that the four pillars of the Order are carried on the wings of eagles wherever they are needed. The Order Shield is the Order Crest on a White Shield with Crimson Border. The Order Arms is the Order Shield surmounted by a Knight’s Helmet with Crimson Mantle. The Great Seal is the Order Arms surrounded by the Motto of the Order in Latin: “Et Vitam Impendere Justitia” which translates in English as “To Sacrifice Even Life To Justice.”
The Manifesto of the Order of the Saltier:
Justice and Freedom are under attack everywhere. Governments, militaries, elected and appointed officials, corporations, criminals, bullies and thugs every day prey on the innocent for their own purposes. Individually and collectively, these evil and corrupt forces operate under the belief that no one can stand up to them or challenge their usurped power over others. The innocent no longer have a clear understanding of who they can trust and who can help them attain the Justice to which they are entitled by God.
The innocent need help defending themselves against these forces of evil and corruption. The influence of evil and corruption needs to be contained and eradicated from the earth. The agents of evil and corruption need to be brought to justice so that their reign is ended. The line must be drawn – the watchword: “Thus far and no farther!” For this crusade, the Order of the Saltier was founded.
The mission of the Order of the Saltier is to stand against tyranny in the world and individuals, groups, or governments who are attempting to take or destroy the Justice and Freedoms of others. The guiding principal of the Order of the Saltier is to uphold the ideals of Justice and Freedom in the world. The duty of the Order of the Saltier is to identify where tyranny exists and where Justice and Freedom are in peril or under attack from individuals, groups, or governments in the world; and to take action where possible to fight tyranny and to help restore Justice and Freedom to those who have lost it.
The Governance of the Order of the Saltier:
The Supreme Governing Authority of the Order is the Grand Master. The Grand Magistry is the governing council of the Order and is appointed by the Grand Master to assist in administering the affairs and activities of the Order.
The Commanderies, comprised of members in the same locality, handle the activities of the Order is a specific geographic area. These activities are called “interventions,” and are efforts of the members to help those in need. Each Commandery is under the command of the Prior.
The Priories are councils that oversee all of the Commanderies in the same country. Each Priory is under the command of the Grand Prior.
Membership Ranks of the Order of the Saltier:
There are three Ranks of Membership:
– Knight or Dame: This is the rank for new members of the Order.
– Knight Commander or Dame Commander: This rank is granted by the Order to those Knights or Dames who have provided consistently outstanding service to the Order and its activities.
– Knight Grand Cross or Dame Grand Cross: This rank is granted by the Order to only those Knights Commander or Dames Commander who have provided consistently exemplary service to the Order and its activities.
The Order does not accept unsolicited applications for membership. A candidate must be approached by a current member, and then go through a significant vetting process to ensure the candidate is worthy of membership and able to perform the activities required while maintaining the secrets of the Orders. Only after that vetting is completed can a candidate be voted into membership and the vote must be unanimous. This level of selectiveness is required to ensure the quality of the candidates while ensuring the safety of the current membership.
So, does the Order of the Saltier exist or is it all just a work of fiction? Officially, the Order of the Saltier does not exist. But then again, isn’t that the answer you would expect to hear about any secret society?
To learn more about the novels of William Speir and the Order of the Saltier, please visit his web site at http://www.williamspeir.com. To order your copy of “Knights of the Saltier – Book 1 of the Order of the Saltier Trilogy,” go to Amazon.com or BarnesandNoble.com. You can also order the book through the publisher’s web site at http://www.strategicpublishinggroup.com/title/KnightsOfTheSaltier-Book1.html