“Third Crusade” 820th Anniversary Series: Archbishop of Canterbury Dies November 19, 2010Posted by rwf1954 in Conrad of Montferrat, Guy of Lusignan, history, Humphrey of Toron, medieval period, the crusades, third crusade, Uncategorized.
Tags: Conrad of Montferrat, Crusades, Humphrey of Toron, King of Jerusalem, Kingdom of Jerusalem, medieval history, Third Crusade
(This post is the sixth of an occasional series of posts following 820th anniversary highlights of what history now calls the “third crusade.” My novel, The Swords of Faith, tells the story of this legendary clash between Richard the Lionheart and Saladin.)
820 years ago today, Baldwin, Archbishop of Canterbury died. How did the death of an English religious leader affect what history now calls the “third crusade?” As indicated in my November 15th post, Baldwin wasn’t in England at the time—he was in Acre, smack in the middle of a succession controversy involving who would be the King of Jerusalem (king of a city still held by Muslim sultan Saladin.). Baldwin was a dissenting voice against the attempts to remove Queen Isabella’s current husband, Humphrey of Toron, by annulling their marriage, so Conrad of Montferrat could move into his place and marry his way onto the throne. The Archbishop of Pisa had approved the maneuver, and those who wanted Conrad to be king looked the other way concerning rumors Conrad was married to at least one other woman back in Italy. With Baldwin gone, and with him his threats of excommunications for all, the annulment could proceed. His death seems convenient for the Conrad faction. But I saw no word in my source materials that indicate foul play was suspected. Acre was mired in a siege-within-a-siege stalemate—it had become an unhealthy, disease-ridden place. Sudden death was not uncommon. Now Conrad could move ahead with the next step.
Previous 820th Anniversary Posts: