Category:Sieges involving the Kingdom of Jerusalem
Pages in category "Sieges involving the Kingdom of Jerusalem"
The following 8 pages are in this category, out of 8 total. This list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).
The following 8 pages are in this category, out of 8 total. This list may not reflect recent changes (learn more).
1. Kingdom of Jerusalem – The Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem was a crusader state established in the Southern Levant by Godfrey of Bouillon in 1099 after the First Crusade. The kingdom lasted nearly two hundred years, from 1099 until 1291 when the last remaining possession, Acre, was destroyed by the Mamluks, the sometimes so-called First Kingdom of Jerusalem lasted from 1099 to 1187, when it was almost entirely overrun by Saladin. This second kingdom is called the Second Kingdom of Jerusalem or the Kingdom of Acre. Three other crusader states founded during and after the First Crusade were located north, the County of Edessa, the Principality of Antioch. While all three were independent, they were tied to Jerusalem. Beyond these to the north and west lay the states of Armenian Cilicia, further east, various Muslim emirates were located which were ultimately allied with the Abbasid caliph in Baghdad. Jerusalem itself fell to Saladin in 1187, and in the 13th century the kingdom was reduced to a few cities along the Mediterranean coast. In this period, the kingdom was ruled by the Lusignan dynasty of the Kingdom of Cyprus, dynastic ties also strengthened with Tripoli, Antioch, and Armenia. The kingdom was soon dominated by the Italian city-states of Venice and Genoa. Emperor Frederick II claimed the kingdom by marriage, but his presence sparked a war among the kingdoms nobility. The kingdom became more than a pawn in the politics and warfare of the Ayyubid and Mamluk dynasties in Egypt, as well as the Khwarezmian. The Mamluk sultans Baibars and al-Ashraf Khalil eventually reconquered all the remaining crusader strongholds, the kingdom was ethnically, religiously, and linguistically diverse, although the crusaders themselves and their descendants were an elite Catholic minority. They imported many customs and institutions from their homelands in Western Europe, the kingdom also inherited oriental qualities, influenced by the pre-existing customs and populations. The majority of the inhabitants were native Christians, especially Greek and Syrian Orthodox, as well as Sunni. The native Christians and Muslims, who were a lower class, tended to speak Greek and Arabic, while the crusaders spoke French. There were also a number of Jews and Samaritans. According to the Jewish writer Benjamin of Tudela, who travelled through the kingdom around 1170, since sets a lower bound for the Samaritan population at 1,500, since the contemporary Tolidah, a Samaritan chronicle, also mentions communities in Gaza and Acre. The First Crusade was preached at the Council of Clermont in 1095 by Pope Urban II, however, the main objective quickly became the control of the Holy Land
2. Siege of Acre (1291) – The Siege of Acre took place in 1291 and resulted in the loss of the Crusader-controlled city of Acre to the Mamluks. It is considered one of the most important battles of the period, although the crusading movement continued for several more centuries, the capture of the city marked the end of further crusades to the Levant. When Acre fell, the Crusaders lost their last major stronghold of the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem, the main turning point in the Crusades was in 1187 when, after the pivotal Battle of Hattin, the Christians lost Jerusalem to the forces of Saladin. In the same year, Saladin was able to conquer a part of the Kingdom of Jerusalem including Acre. The religious orders had their headquarters in or near Acre, from which they made decisions in military. However, most relations with the Mamluks were not as cordial and they also proved to be much more hostile. After the Battle of Ain Jalut, Mamluk forces began attacking Crusader holdings as early as 1261 under Sultan Baibars, in 1265, Caesarea, Haifa, and Arsuf all fell to the Sultan. The following year saw the loss of all the important Latin holdings in Galilee, to help redress these losses, a number of minor Crusading expeditions left Europe for the East. The abortive Crusade of Louis IX of France to Tunis in 1270 was one such attempt, the minor Ninth Crusade of Prince Edward of England in 1271–1272 was another. Neither of these expeditions was capable of giving any assistance to the beleaguered Latin states. The forces involved were too small, the duration of each of the Crusades too short, Pope Gregory X labored valiantly to excite some general enthusiasm for another great Crusade, but he labored in vain. The failure of his appeal was ascribed by the Popes advisors to the laziness and vice of the European nobility. Though each of these factors may have been in part to blame, in any event, no Crusade of any major importance was forthcoming, despite the Popes best efforts. Meanwhile, the attacks on the Latin East continued, as did also the internal difficulties within what was left of the Latin Kingdom. By 1276, the situation, both external and internal, had become so perilous that the King of Jerusalem Henry II withdrew from Palestine altogether to take up his abode on the Island of Cyprus, the desperate plight of the Latin Kingdom worsened. In 1289 Tripoli was lost in the Fall of Tripoli, the Mamluks were led by Sultan Al-Ashraf Khalil, son of Qalawun. Qalawun had begun preparations for the siege but died in November 1290, following the fall of Tripoli, king Henry of Cyprus sent the senechal Jean de Grailly to Europe to warn European monarchs about the critical situation in the Levant. Jean met with Pope Nicholas IV who shared his worries and wrote a letter to European potentates to do something about the Holy Land, most however were too preoccupied by the Sicilian question to organize a Crusade, as was king Edward I too entangled in troubles at home
3. Siege of Damascus (1148) – The Siege of Damascus took place between 24 July and 29 July 1148, during the Second Crusade. It ended in a decisive defeat and led to the disintegration of the crusade. Both faced disastrous marches across Anatolia in the months that followed, the original focus of the crusade was Edessa, but in Jerusalem, the preferred target of King Baldwin III and the Knights Templar was Damascus. At the Council of Acre, magnates from France, Germany, the crusaders decided to attack Damascus from the west, where orchards would provide them with a constant food supply. Having arrived outside the walls of the city, they put it to siege. On 27 July, the decided to move to the plain on the eastern side of the city. Nur ad-Din Zangi arrived with Muslim reinforcements and cut off the route to their previous position. The local crusader lords refused to carry on with the siege, the entire crusader army retreated back to Jerusalem by 28 July. Conrads force included Bolesław IV the Curly and Vladislaus II of Bohemia, as well as Frederick of Swabia, the crusade had been called after the fall of the County of Edessa on 24 December 1144. The crusaders marched across Europe and arrived at Constantinople in September and October 1147, both faced disastrous marches across Anatolia in the months that followed, and most of their armies were destroyed. Louis abandoned his troops and travelled by ship to the Principality of Antioch, Raymond expected him to offer military assistance against the Seljuk Turks threatening the principality, but Louis refused and went to Jerusalem to fulfil his crusader vow. Conrad, stricken by illness, had returned to Constantinople. The original focus of the crusade was Edessa, but in Jerusalem, the target of King Baldwin III. The Council of Acre was called with the Haute Cour of Jerusalem at Acre on 24 June, Louis, Thierry of Alsace, and various other ecclesiastical and secular lords represented the French. Notably, no one from Antioch, Tripoli, or the former County of Edessa attended, both Louis and Conrad were persuaded to attack Damascus. Some of the native to Jerusalem pointed out that it would be unwise to attack Damascus, as the Burid dynasty. Conrad, Louis, and Baldwin insisted, Damascus was a city for Christianity. Like Jerusalem and Antioch, it would be a prize in the eyes of European Christians
4. Battle of Jacob's Ford – The Battle of Jacobs Ford was a victory of the Muslim sultan Saladin over the Christian King of Jerusalem, Baldwin IV. Jacobs Ford is also known by the Latin name of Vadum Iacob, many scholars believe that Saladins reconquest of the Holy Land and Jerusalem in 1187 was heralded by this earlier victory. Saladin, one of the most famous Islamic rulers, was Sultan of Egypt and, by 1174, after seizing power in Syria, Saladin vowed to forge an Islamic empire around Jerusalem. Naturally, the end goal was to recapture the Holy City from the Crusaders, however, such a plan would take the Holy Land without major military conflict. Baldwin IV took control over the Kingdom of Jerusalem at the age of thirteen after the death of his father Amalric I in 1174, Baldwin was a staunch believer in Christianity and, as a result, Saladin’s biggest problem to overcome. Although Baldwin was a rich and powerful leader, he was stricken with leprosy at a young age. After approximately three years on the throne at Jerusalem, Baldwin was faced with his very first military challenge, Saladin invaded the Christian kingdom in approximately 1177 to rout the Crusaders. Although Saladin was almost twenty years older and more experienced than Baldwin, Baldwin and his Crusaders outwitted the Muslims at Mont Gisard on 25 November 1177. By the end of the battle, Saladin was forced to back to Egypt after narrowly escaping death. Although the victory resulted in losses for Baldwin’s armies, his image throughout the kingdom gained in strength. In fact, some Christians in the Near East had even come to believe that miracle of his victory appear as a sign of divine mandate. Jacob’s Ford is approximately one hundred miles north of Jerusalem at the Jordan River and was a key river crossing on one of the roads between Acre and Damascus. In the twelfth century, Baldwin and Saladin continually contested over the area on which Jacobs Ford was situated. As a bold move and as a result of his military victory at Mont Gisard, Baldwin decided to march to Jacob’s Ford. The king and his Crusaders theorized that such a fortification could protect Jerusalem from a northern invasion, between October 1178 and April 1179, Baldwin began the first stages of constructing his new line of defense, a fortification called Chastellet at Jacob’s Ford. While construction was in progress, Saladin became fully aware of the task he would have to overcome at Jacob’s Ford if he were to protect Syria and conquer Jerusalem. At the time, he was unable to stop the erection of Chastellet by military force because a portion of his troops were stationed in northern Syria. Consequently, the sultan turned to bribery and offered Baldwin 60,000 dinars to halt construction, Baldwin declined, but Saladin made a counter-offer of 100,000 dinars
5. Siege of Jerusalem (1187) – The Siege of Jerusalem was a siege on the city of Jerusalem that lasted from September 20 to October 2,1187, when Balian of Ibelin surrendered the city to Saladin. Citizens wishing to leave paid a ransom, the defeat of Jerusalem signalled the end of the Kingdom of Jerusalem. Europe responded in 1189 by launching the Third Crusade led by Richard the Lionheart, Philip Augustus, the Kingdom of Jerusalem, weakened by internal disputes, was defeated at the Battle of Hattin on 4 July 1187. Most of the nobility were taken prisoner, including King Guy, thousands of Muslim slaves were freed. By mid-September, Saladin had taken Acre, Nablus, Jaffa, Toron, Sidon, Beirut, the survivors of the battle and other refugees fled to Tyre, the only city able to hold out against Saladin, due to the fortuitous arrival of Conrad of Montferrat. In Tyre, Balian of Ibelin had asked Saladin for safe passage to Jerusalem in order to retrieve his wife Maria Comnena, Queen consort of Jerusalem and their family. Heraclius, who argued that he must stay for the sake of Christianity, offered to him of the oath. As the highest ranking lord remaining in Jerusalem, according to the chronicler Ibn al-Athir, Balian found the situation in Jerusalem dire. The city was filled with refugees fleeing Saladins conquests, with more arriving daily, there were fewer than fourteen knights in the whole city, so he created sixty new knights from the ranks of the squires and burgesses. He prepared for the siege by storing food and money. The armies of Syria and Egypt assembled under Saladin, and after a brief and unsuccessful siege of Tyre, negotiations were carried out between Saladin and Balian, through the mediation of Yusuf Batit, one of the Eastern Orthodox clergy. Saladins army was facing the Tower of David and the Damascus Gate and his archers continually pelted the ramparts with arrows. Siege towers/belfries were rolled up to the walls, but were pushed back each time, for six days, skirmishes were fought with little result. Saladins forces suffered casualties after each assault, while the Crusaders lost only a few men. On September 26, Saladin moved his camp to a different part of the city, the walls were constantly pounded by the siege engines, catapults, mangonels, petraries, Greek fire, crossbows, and arrows. A portion of the wall was mined, and it collapsed on September 29, the crusaders were unable to push Saladins troops back from the breach, but at the same time the Muslims could not gain entrance to the city. Soon there were only a few dozen knights and a handful of remaining men-at-arms capable of bearing arms and defending the wall, the civilians were in great despair. At Mount Calvary, women cropped their childrens hair, after immersing them chin-deep in basins of cold water and these penances were aimed at turning away Gods wrath from the city, but …Our Lord did not deign to hear the prayers or noise that was made in the city
6. Siege of Kerak – The Siege of Kerak took place in 1183, with Saladins forces attacking and being repelled from the Crusader stronghold. Kerak was the stronghold of Raynald of Châtillon, Lord of Oultrejordain,124 km south of Amman, the fortress was built in 1142 by Pagan the Butler, Lord of Montreal. While Raynald ruled, several truces existed between the Christian and Muslim states in the Holy Land, none of which he made any qualms about breaking, the last straw came in 1183 when he organized an expedition around the Red Sea. He captured the town of Aqaba, giving him a base of operations against Islams holiest city, Saladin, the leader of the Muslim forces, could not tolerate this and moved against Raynalds stronghold. The Muslims had sought to take Kerak for several years, at one point, nine catapults were bombarding the walls and inhabitants within. Inside the walls, a marriage was taking place. Humphrey IV of Toron, Raynalds stepson and heir, was to take the hand of Isabella of Jerusalem, as the wedding ceremonies continued, Saladin instructed his troops to avoid bombarding the young couples quarters, but pressure on Kerak continued. Messengers managed to escape the town and take word to the King, Baldwin immediately marched with a relief force, accompanied by his regent, Raymond III of Tripoli. Although suffering from leprosy since childhood, Baldwins determination to frustrate Saladins attempt was such that he led personally, the Christian forces arrived while Saladin was still struggling against the heavy fortifications. Knowing he risked being crushed between the army and the walls of Kerak, he lifted the siege. Saladin returned to Kerak again in 1184, with the same result, Kerak remained a Crusader stronghold and a symbol of the Wests grip in the region until falling to Muslim control in 1188. The next time the Crusaders had to contend with a major siege, the motion picture Kingdom of Heaven contains a fictional portrayal of the siege. In the film, knights under the command of Balian engaged the Ayyubids as they approached Kerak, the film also showed the siege not taking place, but King Baldwin IV and Saladin negotiating a settlement. Baldwin then punished Raynald for breaking the truce by attacking a Muslim caravan
7. Siege of Sidon – The Siege of Sidon was an event in the aftermath of the First Crusade. The coastal city of Sidon was captured by the forces of Baldwin I of Jerusalem and Sigurd I of Norway, with assistance from the Ordelafo Faliero, in the summer of 1110 a Norwegian fleet of 60 ships arrived in the Levant under the command of King Sigurd. Arriving in Acre he was received by Baldwin I, King of Jerusalem, together they made a journey to the river Jordan, after which Baldwin asked for help in capturing Muslim-held ports on the coast. Baldwins army besieged the city by land, while the Norwegian came by sea, a naval force was needed to prevent assistance from the Fatimid fleet at Tyre. Repelling it was only made possible with the fortunate arrival of a Venetian fleet. The city fell after 47 days, the Icelandic skald Einarr Skúlason gives the following account. By order of Baldwin and the Patriarch of Jerusalem, Ghibbelin of Arles, the Lordship of Sidon was created and given to Eustace Grenier, later a constable of the Kingdom of Jerusalem