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Zacour, N. P.; Hazard, H. W. (ed.) / The impact of the Crusades on Europe
(1989)

V: The Institutions of the Kingdom of Cyprus,   pp. 150-174 PDF (9.7 MB)


Page 158

 158 A HISTORY OF THE CRUSADES 
(1376). Thomas Parek, cited in 1382, was also "a Greek bourgeois who had
become a Latin knight".24 After James II, the Greek or Syrian families which
filled the offices founded families of knights and barons who held their
fiefs first from the king, then under the lordship of Venice. 25 
 Unlike those of the Latin empire of Constantinople or the Norman kingdom
of Sicily, the dynasty which established itself in Cyprus does not seem to
have retained any of the dignities or high offices which had existed under
Isaac Comnenus. The king surrounded himself with a group of high officers
who bore the titles of seneschal, constable, marshal, butler, and chamberlain.
The role of these officers, defined in the Assises, was probably not purely
honorary: in 1367 the constable ordered the auction of the possessions of
bishop Guy of Limassol, which was carried out by his bannier, and, in 1468,
it was to him that a farrier engaged by the king was subject.26 But the royal
household ("nostre court") was organized into several offices which functioned
apart from them. The principal office was the chamber, which was responsible
both for supplies and for the upkeep of the lodgings, the clothing of the
king and his servitors, and the management of the royal hunts: the huntsmen
(braconniers) and the falconers came under the chamber. On the other hand,
it was also the chamber which kept the royal treasure, and we shall find
it again listed among the financial institutions. At its head was a squire,
assisted by a scribe. The pantry, the butlery, and the stable constituted
the three other services over which presided the bailli de la court, who
in the fifteenth century assumed the title of maistre de l'ostel. 
 Were the constable and marshal of Cyprus in charge of the army? In 1425
the army was commanded by Henry de Lusignan, the titular prince of Galilee
(although we do not know whether he was constable); the titular marshal of
Jerusalem, who made decisions concerning provisioning, was Baldwin de Nores,
who was above all the most trusted counselor of king Janus. The turcopoles
of the royal army were theoretically subject to the turcopolier. Besides
the contingents who fought 
24. Machaeras, Recital, caps. 555—561, 564—579, 599. 
 25. The role of the queen, Helena Palaeologina (1442-1458), in this introduction
of Greeks into the nobility has sometimes been exaggerated. It was limited
to favoring certain Greeks who came with her, notably her foster-brother
Thomas of the Morea, who became chamberlain of the kingdom. This is what
led one titular count of Jaffa (himself married to a Cantacuzena) to complain
that "the government of this kingdom has fallen entirely into the hands of
Greeks and petty people." See Raffaele di Tucci, "Ii Matrimonio fra Ludovico
di Savoia e Carlotta di Cipro," Bolletino storico subalpino, xxxvii (1935),
79—83. 
 26. Richard, "Un Evêque d'Orient latin," pp. 131—139; Livre
des remembrances, no. 46. 


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