Spanish knight of order of Calatrava
It was founded at Calatrava la Vieja in Castile, in the twelfth century by St. Raymond of Fitero, as a military branch of theCistercian family. The etymology of the name of this military order, Calatrava, conveys the meaning: "fortress of Rabah".
In the Cistercian Order, then only recently formed (1098), there had been a large number of knights or sons of knights. In Calatrava, on the contrary, those who had been monks became knights. Monastic life has been called "a warfare", and it would be a mistake to suppose those rough medieval warriors sought in the cloister only a comfortable asylum after a troubled career. In both lives there was an heroic struggle to sustain, whether against one's passions or against the Muslims, and the austerities of an ascetic life could not have been more dreadful to them than the privations of camp life and the wounds of battle. These impetuous natures, who did nothing by halves, were eager to take Heaven, as they took earthly strongholds, by storm (Matt., xi, 12). However, the Order of Calatrava owes its origin not to any deliberately prepared plan, but to fortuitous circumstances, the recital of which would seem to be mere romance if the teller, Rodrigo of Toledo, did not add that he himself had known in his youth the hero of the story.