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“Third Crusade” 820th Anniversary Series: Al-Adil’s Courier Brings Saladin’s “Final Offer” for a Peace Agreement August 28, 2012

Posted by rwf1954 in al-Adil, Ascalon, crusades, history, medieval period, Middle Ages, Richard the Lionheart, Saladin, the crusades, third crusade.
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(This post is the fifth to the last post 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.) 

*****

After his brilliant triumph at Jaffa, Richard the Lionheart fell deathly ill. He had been ill before while on this mission, but this time his symptoms were so severe that he was giving instructions for his will. Peace negotiations started again, almost out of brutal necessity. Richard was barely surviving, in no condition at all to command any operations. Saladin would have loved to exploit the situation, but his army was utterly war-weary, lacking any sort of resolve needed to finish the fight. Ascalon remained the deal-breaker. Richard was not going to turn over a position he had worked so hard to establish, had expended so much of his time and resources on, to the enemy. And Saladin would not allow a position of such a threat to Egypt to remain in western Christian hands. The regular negotiating teams went back and forth, apparently at an impasse. But through what we would today call “back-channels,” some serious progress was taking place. Saladin was confused. Which position represented Richard’s position? 820 years ago today, a courier for Saladin’s brother al-Adil brought Saladin’s final offer—Ascalon was to be demolished under supervision of Muslim and western Christian engineers. No one would hold the position. If this offer was not accepted, Saladin promised he would fight on—he lived here. Richard had said he would stay until the following Easter. Saladin welcomed him to do so. But the truth is, Richard could not stay any longer. The offer was accepted.

I invite you to read The Swords of Faith, my novel about this period, dramatizing these events and within that drama exploring themes that still have striking relevance today.

Previous 820th Anniversary Posts:

July 4th – The 820th Anniversary of the Launch of the “Third Crusade”

October 4th – Richard the Lionheart Sacks Messina

November 3rd – Queen Sibylla Dies

November 11th – Richard the Lionheart Signs a Treaty with King Tancred of Sicily

November 15th – Queen Isabella’s Marriage to Humphrey of Toron is Annulled

November 19th – Archbishop of Canterbury Dies

November 24th – Conrad of Montferrat Marries Queen Isabella

December 25th – Richard the Lionheart Feasts at Christmas

December 31st – Shipwreck at Acre; Muslim Defenders Lose Resupply

January 5th – A Wall Comes Down, Presenting an Opportunity

January 20th – Frederick of Swabia Dies; Leopold of Austria Becomes Top-Ranked German Royalty at Acre

February 2nd – A Playful “Joust” Gets Out of Hand in Sicily

February 13th – Saladin’s Forces Relieve the Garrison at Acre

March 3rd – Richard the Lionheart Settles the Alice Marriage Controversy—Sort Of

March 30th – Philip II Leaves Sicily; Berengeria Arrives

April 10th – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Sicily for “Outremer”

April 20th – Philip II of France Lands at Acre

April 22nd – Richard the Lionheart Lands at Rhodes After His Fleet Scatters

May 1st – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Rhodes to Rescue His Sister and Fiancée

May 8th – Richard the Lionheart and His Troops Storm Limassol

May 11th – Crusaders Opposed to Conrad Visit Richard the Lionheart on Cyprus

May 12th – Richard the Lionheart Marries Princess Berengeria

May 30th – Fighting Intensifies at Acre

June 5th – Richard Leaves Famagusta for the Eastern Mediterranean Coast/Saladin Moves his Camp

June 6th – Richard the Lionheart Refused Admittance to Tyre

June 8th – Richard the Lionheart Arrives at Acre

June 11th – Saladin’s Relief Ship Sinks

June 25th – Conrad of Montferrat Leaves Acre; Saladin’s Receives Reinforcements

July 12th – Acre Surrenders

July 31st – Philip II of France Makes a Promise and Leaves for Home

August 2nd – Envoys Discuss Acre Surrender Terms

August 11th – Date for the First Installment of the Acre Ransom Ends in Stalemate

August 20th – Richard the Lionheart Orders the Executions of the Acre Hostages

August 22nd – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Acre to Move South Toward Jerusalem

September 5th – Richard the Lionheart Meets with Saladin’s Brother al-Adil

September 7th – Christian Forces Win the Battle of Arsuf

September 11th – Saladin Gives the Command to Dismantle Ascalon

Sepember 29th – Saladin’s Troops Nearly Take Richard the Lionheart Prisoner

October 20th – Richard the Lionheart Proposes that His Sister Marry Saladin’s Brother al-Adil

November 1st – Saladin Learns of the Death of his Nephew Taqi al-Din

November 8th – Al-Adil Hosts a Banquet for Richard the Lionheart

November 11th – Saladin’s Council Discusses Recent Negotiations with Western Christian Factions

December 12th – Saladin Falls Back to Jerusalem

December 28th – Richard the Lionheart Moves Into the Judean Hills Unopposed

January 3rd – Richard the Lionheart Moves to Within Twelve Miles of Jerusalem

January 6th – Richard the Lionheart Orders a Retreat

January 20th – Richard the Lionheart Decides to Move on Ascalon

February 20th – Richard the Lionheart Arrives in Acre to Make Peace Between Christian Factions

March 20th – Al-Adil Brings Serious Peace Offer to Richard the Lionheart

April 5th – French Army Leaves the “Crusade” After Easter Feast

April 20th – Conrad of Montferrat Is Designated Undisputed King of Jerusalem

April 28th – Conrad of Montferrat Is Assassinated in Tyre

May 5th – Henry of Champagne Becomes the New King of Jerusalem Designate

May 23rd – Richard the Lionheart Takes Darum

June 7th – Western Christian Forces Start Out from Ascalon for Jerusalem

June 11th – Richard the Lionheart Arrives at Beit-Nuba; Saladin Waits in Jerusalem

June 24th – Richard the Lionheart’s Forces Take a Huge Caravan Bringing Supplies to Saladin

July 1st – Saladin Holds a War Council in Jerusalem

July 4th – Richard the Lionheart Withdraws a Second Time Before Besieging Jerusalem

July 27th – Saladin Moves from Jerusalem to Attack Jaffa

July 31st – Richard Storms the Beaches at Jaffa with a Minimal Force

August 5th – Richard Defends Saladin’s Counterattack at Jaffa with a Minimal Force

To review a comprehensive catalog of historical fiction set during the medieval time period, go to http://www.medieval-novels.com:80/.

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“Third Crusade” 820th Anniversary Series: Al-Adil Brings Serious Peace Offer to Richard the Lionheart March 20, 2012

Posted by rwf1954 in al-Adil, al-Kamil, Beirut, crusades, history, Jerusalem, medieval period, Middle Ages, Richard the Lionheart, Safadin, Saladin, the crusades, third crusade.
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(This post is the 49th of what will be approximately 70 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, al-Adil rode into Richard the Lionheart’s camp with a serious offer for peace:

  • The western Christians would keep what they had conquered.
  • Jerusalem would remain in Muslim possession, with the right of pilgrimage for western Christians, and Latin Christian priests would be restored to Christian churches there.
  • The “True Cross” would be restored to the Western Christians.
  • Christians would be permitted to annex Beirut if it was demilitarized.

Richard the Lionheart seemed favorable to the offer. He knighted al-Adil’s son, al-Kamil. Al-Adil returned to Saladin in early April and told Saladin he thought the two sides were on the verge of peace. But though serious terms were now on the table, peace would not come yet.

Previous 820th Anniversary Posts:

July 4th – The 820th Anniversary of the Launch of the “Third Crusade”

October 4th – Richard the Lionheart Sacks Messina

November 3rd – Queen Sibylla Dies

November 11th – Richard the Lionheart Signs a Treaty with King Tancred of Sicily

November 15th – Queen Isabella’s Marriage to Humphrey of Toron is Annulled

November 19th – Archbishop of Canterbury Dies

November 24th – Conrad of Montferrat Marries Queen Isabella

December 25th – Richard the Lionheart Feasts at Christmas

December 31st – Shipwreck at Acre; Muslim Defenders Lose Resupply

January 5th – A Wall Comes Down, Presenting an Opportunity

January 20th – Frederick of Swabia Dies; Leopold of Austria Becomes Top-Ranked German Royalty at Acre

February 2nd – A Playful “Joust” Gets Out of Hand in Sicily

February 13th – Saladin’s Forces Relieve the Garrison at Acre

March 3rd – Richard the Lionheart Settles the Alice Marriage Controversy—Sort Of

March 30th – Philip II Leaves Sicily; Berengeria Arrives

April 10th – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Sicily for “Outremer”

April 20th – Philip II of France Lands at Acre

April 22nd – Richard the Lionheart Lands at Rhodes After His Fleet Scatters

May 1st – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Rhodes to Rescue His Sister and Fiancée

May 8th – Richard the Lionheart and His Troops Storm Limassol

May 11th – Crusaders Opposed to Conrad Visit Richard the Lionheart on Cyprus

May 12th – Richard the Lionheart Marries Princess Berengeria

May 30th – Fighting Intensifies at Acre

June 5th – Richard Leaves Famagusta for the Eastern Mediterranean Coast/Saladin Moves his Camp

June 6th – Richard the Lionheart Refused Admittance to Tyre

June 8th – Richard the Lionheart Arrives at Acre

June 11th – Saladin’s Relief Ship Sinks

June 25th – Conrad of Montferrat Leaves Acre; Saladin’s Receives Reinforcements

July 12th – Acre Surrenders

July 31st – Philip II of France Makes a Promise and Leaves for Home

August 2nd – Envoys Discuss Acre Surrender Terms

August 11th – Date for the First Installment of the Acre Ransom Ends in Stalemate

August 20th – Richard the Lionheart Orders the Executions of the Acre Hostages

August 22nd – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Acre to Move South Toward Jerusalem

September 5th – Richard the Lionheart Meets with Saladin’s Brother al-Adil

September 7th – Christian Forces Win the Battle of Arsuf

September 11th – Saladin Gives the Command to Dismantle Ascalon

Sepember 29th – Saladin’s Troops Nearly Take Richard the Lionheart Prisoner

October 20th – Richard the Lionheart Proposes that His Sister Marry Saladin’s Brother al-Adil

November 1st – Saladin Learns of the Death of his Nephew Taqi al-Din

November 8th – Al-Adil Hosts a Banquet for Richard the Lionheart

November 11th – Saladin’s Council Discusses Recent Negotiations with Western Christian Factions

December 12th – Saladin Falls Back to Jerusalem

December 28th – Richard the Lionheart Moves Into the Judean Hills Unopposed

January 3rd – Richard the Lionheart Moves to Within Twelve Miles of Jerusalem

January 6th – Richard the Lionheart Orders a Retreat

January 20th – Richard the Lionheart Decides to Move on Ascalon

February 20th – Richard the Lionheart Arrives in Acre to Make Peace Between Christian Factions

To review a comprehensive catalog of historical fiction set during the medieval time period, go to http://www.medieval-novels.com:80/.

“Third Crusade” 820th Anniversary Series: Al-Adil Hosts a Banquet for Richard the Lionheart November 8, 2011

Posted by rwf1954 in al-Adil, crusades, history, medieval period, Middle Ages, Richard the Lionheart, Safadin, Saladin, the crusades, third crusade.
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(This post is the 41st of what will be approximately 70 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, Christians and Muslims met at a banquet at Lydda (southeast of Jaffa) hosted by al-Adil, Saladin’s brother. Richard the Lionheart and al-Adil expressed affection for each other, and it is clear a rapport had developed between the two men. But peace was no closer than it had been right after the Battle of Arsuf. Al-Adil was very definitely playing for time, to delay the anticipated western Christian advance on Jerusalem for as long as possible. Did he feign politeness to Richard in an attempt to accomplish this purpose? Certainly. But evidence exists that a genuine mutual affection did develop. We can legitimately speculate that the August slaughter of the Acre hostages might not have occurred in November under the same circumstances. Why was al-Adil playing for time? Two reasons that will become evident during the next two 820th anniversary posts on the “Third Crusade.”

Previous 820th Anniversary Posts:

July 4th – The 820th Anniversary of the Launch of the “Third Crusade”

October 4th – Richard the Lionheart Sacks Messina

November 3rd – Queen Sibylla Dies

November 11th – Richard the Lionheart Signs a Treaty with King Tancred of Sicily

November 15th – Queen Isabella’s Marriage to Humphrey of Toron is Annulled

November 19th – Archbishop of Canterbury Dies

November 24th – Conrad of Montferrat Marries Queen Isabella

December 25th – Richard the Lionheart Feasts at Christmas

December 31st – Shipwreck at Acre; Muslim Defenders Lose Resupply

January 5th – A Wall Comes Down, Presenting an Opportunity

January 20th – Frederick of Swabia Dies; Leopold of Austria Becomes Top-Ranked German Royalty at Acre

February 2nd – A Playful “Joust” Gets Out of Hand in Sicily

February 13th – Saladin’s Forces Relieve the Garrison at Acre

March 3rd – Richard the Lionheart Settles the Alice Marriage Controversy—Sort Of

March 30th – Philip II Leaves Sicily; Berengeria Arrives

April 10th – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Sicily for “Outremer”

April 20th – Philip II of France Lands at Acre

April 22nd – Richard the Lionheart Lands at Rhodes After His Fleet Scatters

May 1st – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Rhodes to Rescue His Sister and Fiancée

May 8th – Richard the Lionheart and His Troops Storm Limassol

May 11th – Crusaders Opposed to Conrad Visit Richard the Lionheart on Cyprus

May 12th – Richard the Lionheart Marries Princess Berengeria

May 30th – Fighting Intensifies at Acre

June 5th – Richard Leaves Famagusta for the Eastern Mediterranean Coast/Saladin Moves his Camp

June 6th – Richard the Lionheart Refused Admittance to Tyre

June 8th – Richard the Lionheart Arrives at Acre

June 11th – Saladin’s Relief Ship Sinks

June 25th – Conrad of Montferrat Leaves Acre; Saladin’s Receives Reinforcements

July 12th – Acre Surrenders

July 31st – Philip II of France Makes a Promise and Leaves for Home

August 2nd – Envoys Discuss Acre Surrender Terms

August 11th – Date for the First Installment of the Acre Ransom Ends in Stalemate

August 20th – Richard the Lionheart Orders the Executions of the Acre Hostages

August 22nd – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Acre to Move South Toward Jerusalem

September 5th – Richard the Lionheart Meets with Saladin’s Brother al-Adil

September 7th – Christian Forces Win the Battle of Arsuf

September 11th – Saladin Gives the Command to Dismantle Ascalon

Sepember 29th – Saladin’s Troops Nearly Take Richard the Lionheart Prisoner

October 20th – Richard the Lionheart Proposes that His Sister Marry Saladin’s Brother al-Adil

November 1st – Saladin Learns of the Death of his Nephew Taqi al-Din

To review a comprehensive catalog of historical fiction set during the medieval time period, go to http://www.medieval-novels.com:80/.

“Third Crusade” 820th Anniversary Series: Richard the Lionheart Proposes that His Sister Marry Saladin’s Brother al-Adil October 20, 2011

Posted by rwf1954 in al-Adil, crusades, history, medieval period, Middle Ages, Richard the Lionheart, Safadin, Saladin, the crusades, third crusade.
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(This post is the 39th of what will be approximately 70 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.) 

*****

In one of the more bizarre moves of the “Third Crusade,” a move that belongs in the “truth-stranger-than-fiction” category, 820 years ago today Richard the Lionheart proposed that his sister, Joan, recent widow of the king of Sicily, marry al-Adil, Saladin’s brother, and that the two jointly rule a territory that would include Jerusalem. After all, that is how many disputes were resolved inEurope. And negotiations between the forces commanded by Richard the Lionheart and Saladin had stalled. Little of substance toward a settlement had occurred between the negotiators. On October 17th, Richard sent his own heart-felt almost naïve letter spelling out how much both sides had suffered, and how since Jerusalem meant more to Christians than to Muslim, the parties should resolve the conflict along Richard’s terms.

Saladin sent back a quick, polite reply—Richard’s personal appeal had not been persuasive. So Richard followed with this creative proposal of a unifying marriage. Saladin and his brother and advisers needed to decide on a response.

Saladin was brilliant in assessing the situation accurately, then crafting the perfect response. The key was Saladin’s understanding that this proposal was not serious. What of the Kingdom of Jerusalem Guy/Conrad issue? Were they just going to be left out of any settlement? Was this Richard’s attempt to signal his seriousness about an ultimate settlement, and to provoke a meaningful counterproposal? Whatever it was, Saladin’s understanding of its lack of seriousness guided him to his masterful response—simple—he accepted the proposal.

Now Richard had a dilemma on his hands. He brought the matter to his sister Joan—he hadn’t discussed this with her before making the proposal. She angrily refused the idea. She was not going to marry a Muslim! Richard had to go back to Saladin’s negotiators and explain the problem. But there was an easy solution for Richard to propose. Al-Adil could convert to Christianity. Obviously, this was not an easy solution at all. The Muslims quickly dismissed this idea. Though Richard mentioned getting the Pope’s permission for one of his nieces to marry a Muslim, the whole idea fizzled, confirming Saladin’s original conclusion that Richard’s proposal was never serious.

Previous 820th Anniversary Posts:

July 4th – The 820th Anniversary of the Launch of the “Third Crusade”

October 4th – Richard the Lionheart Sacks Messina

November 3rd – Queen Sibylla Dies

November 11th – Richard the Lionheart Signs a Treaty with King Tancred of Sicily

November 15th – Queen Isabella’s Marriage to Humphrey of Toron is Annulled

November 19th – Archbishop of Canterbury Dies

November 24th – Conrad of Montferrat Marries Queen Isabella

December 25th – Richard the Lionheart Feasts at Christmas

December 31st – Shipwreck at Acre; Muslim Defenders Lose Resupply

January 5th – A Wall Comes Down, Presenting an Opportunity

January 20th – Frederick of Swabia Dies; Leopold of Austria Becomes Top-Ranked German Royalty at Acre

February 2nd – A Playful “Joust” Gets Out of Hand in Sicily

February 13th – Saladin’s Forces Relieve the Garrison at Acre

March 3rd – Richard the Lionheart Settles the Alice Marriage Controversy—Sort Of

March 30th – Philip II Leaves Sicily; Berengeria Arrives

April 10th – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Sicily for “Outremer”

April 20th – Philip II of France Lands at Acre

April 22nd – Richard the Lionheart Lands at Rhodes After His Fleet Scatters

May 1st – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Rhodes to Rescue His Sister and Fiancée

May 8th – Richard the Lionheart and His Troops Storm Limassol

May 11th – Crusaders Opposed to Conrad Visit Richard the Lionheart on Cyprus

May 12th – Richard the Lionheart Marries Princess Berengeria

May 30th – Fighting Intensifies at Acre

June 5th – Richard Leaves Famagusta for the Eastern Mediterranean Coast/Saladin Moves his Camp

June 6th – Richard the Lionheart Refused Admittance to Tyre

June 8th – Richard the Lionheart Arrives at Acre

June 11th – Saladin’s Relief Ship Sinks

June 25th – Conrad of Montferrat Leaves Acre; Saladin’s Receives Reinforcements

July 12th – Acre Surrenders

July 31st – Philip II of France Makes a Promise and Leaves for Home

August 2nd – Envoys Discuss Acre Surrender Terms

August 11th – Date for the First Installment of the Acre Ransom Ends in Stalemate

August 20th – Richard the Lionheart Orders the Executions of the Acre Hostages

August 22nd – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Acre to Move South Toward Jerusalem

September 5th – Richard the Lionheart Meets with Saladin’s Brother al-Adil

September 7th – Christian Forces Win the Battle of Arsuf

September 11th – Saladin Gives the Command to Dismantle Ascalon

Sepember 29th – Saladin’s Troops Nearly Take Richard the Lionheart Prisoner

To review a comprehensive catalog of historical fiction set during the medieval time period, go to http://www.medieval-novels.com:80/.

“Third Crusade” 820th Anniversary Series: Richard the Lionheart Meets with Saladin’s Brother al-Adil September 5, 2011

Posted by rwf1954 in al-Adil, Arsuf, crusades, history, medieval period, Middle Ages, Richard the Lionheart, Saladin, the crusades, third crusade.
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(This post is the 35th of what will be approximately 70 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.) 

*****

Richard the Lionheart knew Saladin wanted to entice his forces to battle. He was fairly sure he knew where the enemy forces would try to attempt this. He decided to call for talks with al-Adil, Saladin’s brother. Saladin was happy to agree to this request and sent his brother with instructions to draw out their talks. 820 years ago today, the two men met. But Richard’s idea of talks was a demand to al-Adil for Saladin’s forces to surrender the coast and Jerusalem. Al-Adil abruptly rejected this proposal and broke off their talks. Saladin was disappointed the talks were not extended. But al-Adil did not see how else he could respond to such a ridiculous offer. It was little more than a demand for surrender. And no doubt al-Adil had preparations to make for the upcoming battle. Richard’s gambit of asking for negotiations to test al-Adil’s reaction gave him information he needed. Richard believed the Muslims would force a battle just west of the forests at Arsuf.

Previous 820th Anniversary Posts:

July 4th – The 820th Anniversary of the Launch of the “Third Crusade”

October 4th – Richard the Lionheart Sacks Messina

November 3rd – Queen Sibylla Dies

November 11th – Richard the Lionheart Signs a Treaty with King Tancred of Sicily

November 15th – Queen Isabella’s Marriage to Humphrey of Toron is Annulled

November 19th – Archbishop of Canterbury Dies

November 24th – Conrad of Montferrat Marries Queen Isabella

December 25th – Richard the Lionheart Feasts at Christmas

December 31st – Shipwreck at Acre; Muslim Defenders Lose Resupply

January 5th – A Wall Comes Down, Presenting an Opportunity

January 20th – Frederick of Swabia Dies; Leopold of Austria Becomes Top-Ranked German Royalty at Acre

February 2nd – A Playful “Joust” Gets Out of Hand in Sicily

February 13th – Saladin’s Forces Relieve the Garrison at Acre

March 3rd – Richard the Lionheart Settles the Alice Marriage Controversy—Sort Of

March 30th – Philip II Leaves Sicily; Berengeria Arrives

April 10th – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Sicily for “Outremer”

April 20th – Philip II of France Lands at Acre

April 22nd – Richard the Lionheart Lands at Rhodes After His Fleet Scatters

May 1st – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Rhodes to Rescue His Sister and Fiancée

May 8th – Richard the Lionheart and His Troops Storm Limassol

May 11th – Crusaders Opposed to Conrad Visit Richard the Lionheart on Cyprus

May 12th – Richard the Lionheart Marries Princess Berengeria

May 30th – Fighting Intensifies at Acre

June 5th – Richard Leaves Famagusta for the Eastern Mediterranean Coast/Saladin Moves his Camp

June 6th – Richard the Lionheart Refused Admittance to Tyre

June 8th – Richard the Lionheart Arrives at Acre

June 11th – Saladin’s Relief Ship Sinks

June 25th – Conrad of Montferrat Leaves Acre; Saladin’s Receives Reinforcements

July 12th – Acre Surrenders

July 31st – Philip II of France Makes a Promise and Leaves for Home

August 2nd – Envoys Discuss Acre Surrender Terms

August 11th – Date for the First Installment of the Acre Ransom Ends in Stalemate

August 20th – Richard the Lionheart Orders the Executions of the Acre Hostages

August 22nd – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Acre to Move South Toward Jerusalem

To review a comprehensive catalog of historical fiction set during the medieval time period, go to http://www.medieval-novels.com:80/.

“Third Crusade” 820th Anniversary Series: Richard the Lionheart Arrives at Acre June 8, 2011

Posted by rwf1954 in Acre, al-Adil, arnaldia, Ayyubid, crusades, history, medieval period, Outremer, Richard the Lionheart, Safadin, Saladin, the crusades, third crusade.
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(This post is the 26th of what will be approximately 70 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, amidst commotion that could be heard in the Muslim camps, with fanfares and cheering, Richard the Lionheart, as part of what would be twenty-five galleys (with more to come), landed at Acre. His arrival reduced morale among Muslims, though Saladin is reported to have remained calm. Richard arrived with his usual dashing confidence. He wanted to set up negotiations with Saladin as soon as possible. Maybe his arrival, and news of the numbers of forces and resources at his command, would motivate the Muslims to give up the fight. Whether it did or didn’t, Richard saw negotiations as a chance to learn about the enemy, to take the measure of them. But two problems emerged. At almost the moment he arrived, Richard became ill, contracting what the French called “arnaldia,” a fever causing hair loss and nails to fall out. He was in no condition to meet his adversaries for a number of weeks. And second, Saladin, probably suspecting Richard’s call for negotiations was not entirely sincere, was not interested in face-to-face meetings. “Kings do not meet while they are at war,” Saladin replied. He referred Richard to his brother, al-Adil (also sometimes referred to as Safadin). Over the coming months, Richard would forge a remarkable bond with this future sultan of the Ayyubid empire. Richard’s forces got busy bringing their resources into the fight. But except for some operations with Richard trying to command from a stretcher, it would be awhile before Richard would be capable of a direct active role in finally achieving western Christian victory at Acre.

Previous 820th Anniversary Posts:

July 4th – The 820th Anniversary of the Launch of the “Third Crusade”

October 4th – Richard the Lionheart Sacks Messina

November 3rd – Queen Sibylla Dies

November 11th – Richard the Lionheart Signs a Treaty with King Tancred of Sicily

November 15th – Queen Isabella’s Marriage to Humphrey of Toron is Annulled

November 19th – Archbishop of Canterbury Dies

November 24th – Conrad of Montferrat Marries Queen Isabella

December 25th – Richard the Lionheart Feasts at Christmas

December 31st – Shipwreck at Acre; Muslim Defenders Lose Resupply

January 5th – A Wall Comes Down, Presenting an Opportunity

January 20th – Frederick of Swabia Dies; Leopold of Austria Becomes Top-Ranked German Royalty at Acre

February 2nd – A Playful “Joust” Gets Out of Hand in Sicily

February 13th – Saladin’s Forces Relieve the Garrison at Acre

March 3rd – Richard the Lionheart Settles the Alice Marriage Controversy—Sort Of

March 30th – Philip II Leaves Sicily; Berengeria Arrives

April 10th – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Sicily for “Outremer”

April 20th – Philip II of France Lands at Acre

April 22nd – Richard the Lionheart Lands at Rhodes After His Fleet Scatters

May 1st – Richard the Lionheart Leaves Rhodes to Rescue His Sister and Fiancée

May 8th – Richard the Lionheart and His Troops Storm Limassol

May 11th – Crusaders Opposed to Conrad Visit Richard the Lionheart on Cyprus

May 12th – Richard the Lionheart Marries Princess Berengeria

May 30th – Fighting Intensifies at Acre

June 5th – Richard Leaves Famagusta for the Eastern Mediterranean Coast/Saladin Moves his Camp

June 6th – Richard the Lionheart Refused Admittance to Tyre

To review a comprehensive catalog of historical fiction set during the medieval time period, go to http://www.medieval-novels.com:80/.