Monday, November 26, 2018

Oak Island, Red Glass and the Knights Templar

No, I wasn’t going to review each episode of The Curse of Oak Island because it just doesn’t seem to be worth the effort. They have all fallen into a pattern, and last week’s episode (No.2) was no exception. However, they did one thing that annoyed me.

Once again, near the surface, meaning buried in six or seven inches of soil, they found a hunk of jewelry that had a large red stone set in the center. This, they believed, was their first real find of treasure. They took it to a university geology department for analysis.

So far, so good.

Under microscopic analysis, it was determined that the stone was, in fact, red glass. The geologist mentioned that the formula for red glass had been found and lost multiple times over the centuries. The formula was either a family secret or a trade secret and because of that, the formula was something written in code…


That perked up the ears of the treasure hunters, not to mention the narrator. Then, it was off the rails, again… The Knights Templar
Templar Battle Flag
used codes. They were the main bankers of the 14th century until they were wiped out in one night, (just as the Jedi had been, but that is irrelevant to us here).

Doesn’t code imply some sort of nefarious purpose? Code implied that maybe the Knights Templar were responsible for the Oak Island treasure (though I’m unsure how they made this leap in logic).

Or maybe, just maybe, those who had discovered a way to create red glass had wanted to keep the secret for themselves. They used a code so that others couldn’t steal their formula. Maybe there just wasn’t a hidden purpose in that code at all and just maybe, or much more likely, it had nothing to do with the Knights Templar.

This is the thing that annoys me. They pick up something on the surface, clearly something created centuries ago, and then pile speculation upon guesswork upon faulty reasoning, and run with it. A piece of red glass, no matter how old, does not a treasure make, nor does a comment that some glass makers in ancient times tried to protect their formulas using codes does not lead to the Knights Templar.

Sure, there were other outrages in the episode, but this was the most egregious of them. I couldn’t let it pass without comment


TheDimov said...

yes I find it annoying when they make these leaps, in particular the cross which they think bears a remarkable resemblance to a Templar-related etching on a wall, but look closely at the etching and you can see the fingers on the hands and the division for the legs, I find that they're rather stretching it. And the red/Templars/Roger Bacon thing, well I guess they have to run with a theme to make things more interesting.

Still fun to see what they find. I really want to know the results of the Smith's Cove dig, that's what intrigues me most, will they find remnants of the box drains.

Lorna Hunter said...

Kevin, I thought they determined that the red stone was garnet? And the treasure was in the fact that there was a minute amount of gold in the setting?

As for red glass, the historic house I work for has stained glass windows. There are several round red "jewels" in some of the windows. I have been told by previous docents, and people who have worked there longer than I have, that the red glass can not be reproduced.

Perhaps because the formula was lost - in 1900? Apparently glass makers don't keep good records.

KRandle said...

Lorna -

That was last season's big find. This was a new one in which there was some gold and the red glass which lead to the idea of codes that lead to the Knights Templar. Of course, in the world today, we know how to not only make glass but colored glass.

Mr. Sweepy! said...

Kevin, I did a search for the "history of Red Glass" in Google. There are many articles about it. For example here is one:

I read other articles and most referred to Germany as the country of origin for red glass. However in three articles, I didn't read once about the Knights Templar. Of course, this doesn't dismiss the possibility, only that they were not the creators of red glass.