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An aged, but ageless, knight and third brother of the Guardians of the Holy Grail. He is the last protector of the grail and greets Indiana Jones.
The Grail Knight is the Guardian of the Holy Grail. Born in the late 11th Century, this nameless French knight and his two brothers, Richard and someone else, join the First Crusade to the Holy Lands in 1096 AD. They discover the Holy Grail and use it to extend their lives. They swear an oath to protect the Grail from all that would abuse it. However, over the centuries, two of the three brothers leave to return to France. By the mid-20th Century, the Grail Knight is the sole protector of the Holy Grail. He sits alone in an underground temple, waiting for a champion worthy of the Grail to best him and claim the role of protector.
You Think He Would Have Memorized It by Now.
Three Knight Brothers find the Holy Grail at some point between 1096 and 1099 AD. They take shelter in the Temple of the Sun in the Canyon of the Crescent Moon in Hatay. The brothers extend their lives to protect the grail, but in the 13th Century, the Grail Knight's two brother leave to return to France. They leave marker tablets pointing the way back to the Holy Grail. One brother, Sir Richard, dies in Venice, Italy and is entombed in the catacombs. The remaining brother travels to France and tells his tale to a Franciscan Friar who transcribes the story into a book. The Grail Knight remains in the Temple of the Sun as he is the bravest of the brothers. He has only his large, Illuminated Bible to read. He protects the Grail until 1938, waiting for a champion too vanquish him in combat and assume the role of Guardian of the Holy Grail.
In 1938, Walter Donovan under instructions from Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Leadership in Germany spends a fortune to retrieve information leading to the Holy Grail. With the unwitting and reluctant help of Indiana Jones, he succeeds and bypasses the traps of the Temple of the Sun to enter the Grail Chamber.
Indiana Jones Vanquishes the Grail Knight.
Indiana Jones enters the Grail Chamber first, and the Grail Knight confronts him, swinging his sword. However, being alive for nearly a millennium has left the Grail Knight weak. He congratulates Jones and tries to give him his sword and the job of protecting the Grail. Indiana Jones does not want either. As Donovan and Elsa Schneider arrive in the chamber, the Grail Knight warns that the Final Test is to select the True Grail from many options. He also warns that the True Grail grants life but the False Grail steals it.
"He Chose... Poorly..."
Donovan demands to be the first to drink from the Grail. Donovan allows Elsa to choose for him. She intentionally chooses the wrong chalice, but Donovan drinks from it anyway. The Grail Knight remains silent. Donovan ages rapidly and turns to dust. The Grail Knight chides Donovan's dust for choosing incorrectly. Indiana Jones selects a simple, wooden cup and drinks from it. As Indiana Jones does not experience immediate, horrifying death, the Grail Knight congratulates him. However, he imposes rules on the Grail. One cannot take the Grail across the Great Seal in the Temple's lobby -- "That is the price of Immortality."
Good-Bye! Don't Be a Stranger!
Unfortunately for everyone present, Elsa tries to take the Holy Grail out of the Temple. As the Grail Knight warned, the Earth splits open and swallows Elsa. The Temple collapses, presumably crushing and killing the Grail Knight. The Grail Knight accepts the rest of Death after so many years of dutifully protecting the Holy Grail. He even waves Good-Bye to Indiana Jones.
Personality and Traits
A devoted Christian, the Grail Knight studies the Bible for over 700 years. He exudes the virtues of patience, duty, and honor. His extremely advanced age has left him weak, but he is friendly to true pilgrims. However, for security reasons, he remains cryptic and distant. He provides only fact rather than emotion. Probably has not bathed in centuries.
The Grail Knight's Book.
As Indiana Jones enters the Grail Antechamber, the Grail Knight reads from his large print Bible. A few visible words appear to mention the Arthurian Legend which does not fit with it being a Bible. According to Lucasfilm, the prop re-uses text from the Friar's Tale that Walter Donovan shows Indiana Jones in his penthouse. The production company confirms it is intended to be a large, Illuminated Bible.