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Baldwin, M. W. (ed.) / The first hundred years

X: The First Crusade: Antioch to Ascalon,   pp. 308-341 PDF (13.4 MB)

Page 318

St. George, while others were running through the streets arous ing the Christian
citizens, with whose help they flung open the gates at the bridge. Soon the
whole Frankish army was pouring into the city. Greeks and Armenians joined
them in massacring every Turk that they met; and many Christians died in
the con fusion. Yaghi-Slyan was awakened by the tumult. He thought that all
was lost, and fled with his bodyguard on horseback up the gorge that led
to the Iron Gate, and out to the hills. His son, Shams-ad-Daulah, kept his
head. Gathering all the men that he could find, he made for the citadel.
When Bohemond reached the citadel gate, he could not force an entrance; but
he placed his purple banner on the highest point that he could reach, to
cheer the crusaders as they rushed through the streets far below. He made
a second and stronger attack on the citadel which also failed, and he himself
was wounded. So, leaving men to contain it, he returned into the city. Soon
he was consoled by the gift of Yaghi-Slyan's severed head. Yaghi-Slyan had
been thrown from his horse as he hurried over a mountain path. His escort
left him as he lay there, and he was found, half-stunned, by some Armenian
peasants who killed him and came to Bohemond, who gave them a rich reward.8
 By nightfall on June 3, 1098, Antioch was once more in Chris tian hands,
and not a Turk was left alive there. The streets were full of corpses; the
houses, Christian as well as Moslem, had been looted, and their treasures
scattered or destroyed. Only the citadel remained unconqu ered. 
 The capture of Antioch was a great achievement; but the cru saders were
not very much better off in consequence. They could now protect themselves
behind the great fortifications, which had received no damage during the
siege. Their noncombatant fol lowers were now safely sheltered. The Turkish
army defending the city had been almost annihilated. But the long line of
walls now needed defense. The citadel had to be picketed, and its garrison
could watch everything that took place within the city. The cru sade was
still short of fighting men. Moreover, they found no 
 8 Gesta, VII, 20 (ed. Bréhier, pp. 100-1 10), is the most vivid account,
although it omits mention of Bohemond's own failure at the citadel; Raymond
of Aguilers, ix (RHC, 0cc., III, 255—253), supplying information about
the citadel. William of Tyre's account contains pro. bably legendary details
such as the story of Firüz's wife (V, 18—23; RHC, 0cc., I, 222—223).
Firuz is called an Armenian by Anna Comnena (IX, iv, 2; ed. Leib, III, i)
and by Radulf of Caen (lxii; RHC, 0cc., III, 651), and a "Turcatus", i.e.
a renegade Christian, by Ray mond. The Gesta calls him "Pirrus"; Ibn-al-Athir,
Kämil, p. 592, "Firuz"; Kamãl-ad-Din (RHC, Or., III, 58 1—582),
calls him "Zarrad", the maker of cuirasses. William of Tyre says that he
belonged to the "Beni Zarra", which he says means "flu loricatoris". Ibn-al-Athir,
Kãmil, p. 193, describes YagM-Siyan's death. 

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