University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
The History Collection

Page View

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

I: The Legal and Political Theory of the Crusade,   pp. 3-38 PDF (14.2 MB)

Page 29

eluding those, like Gregory IX or Nicholas IV, who were most anxious for
the renewal of the crusade, were concerned to ensure that the Moslem rulers
at least in North Africa and the west should accept Latin clergy sent to
act as chaplains to the local Christian communities. These seem to have been,
from an early date, friars, especially Franciscans. Even in Egypt they served
Christian prisoners, among others, but it is not clear that this service
was maintained consistently. 
 The trading communities were relatively stable. The treaties between the
commercial states and Islamic rulers, of which many, from the twelfth century
onward, are extant, are strictly businesslike; they do not infringe the canons,
although as Peflaforte's case-decisions illustrate, individual members of
the communities must often have done so. The treaties freely use Moslem terminology,
adopting the style of the country ("in the name of God the Compassionate
and Merciful"); they establish a firm consular basis for trading rights,
often reciprocal, and some secure the right to ' maintain chapels. In this
situation the popes intervened amicably enough. In writing to Moslem rulers,
they used phrases like "your nobility" and "your magnificence"; Gregory IX
wrote to ' Abd-al-Waliid II, the Muwahhid ruler of Morocco, "to the noble
man Amiromolinus" (am(r al-mu'minTn, the commander of the faithful); we must
assume that (as was often the case) this was thought to be a proper name.
Several of these letters refer in more or less friendly fashion to Christians
who are serving under Moslem rulers, even as soldiers.51 It is clear that
in North Africa (as distinct from Egypt) this was not always taken to be
in dispendium Terrae Sanctae, and was then legal so long~ as it was not done
to fight against Christians. 
 In any case, not even the shadow of toleration extended to Egypt; Egypt
was an enemy country and constantly singled out as such, on strategic principles
which remained dominant till the Ottoman invasion. The earlier canons that
forbade trade in dispendium did not specify the Moslems against whom they
were directed, but one bull of Innocent III, of the same date as Lateran
IV, singled out "the lands of the Moslems who inhabit the eastern regions".
A gloss of Jesselin of Cassagnes explains the phrase "the lands of Egypt"
(where it occurs in the 1317 canon about Granada): "in which Christ was born,
 51. See note 9 above; L. de Mas Latrie, Traités de paix et de commerce
et documents divers (Paris, 1866—1872), II, 1—21, 367—374;
Paul Riant, "Traités des venitiens avec l'émir d'Acre en 1304,"
AOL, 1(1881), 406-408. Cf. Salimbene de Adam, Cronica, ed. Giuseppe Scalia
(Scrittori d'Italia, 233), I (Ban, 1966), 457—458; Angelo di Spoleto,
Defratribus minoribus visitantibus captivos in Babilonia (1303—4),
in BO1~ III, 68 if. See also Eliyahu Ashtor, Levant Trade in the Later Middle
Ages (Princeton, 1983). 

Go up to Top of Page