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

XVIII: The rise of Saladin, 1169-1189,   pp. 562-589 PDF (13.3 MB)

Page 585

Ch. XVIII THE RISE OF SALADIN 585 11 Cf. below, chapter XIX, p. 605.12 ~Imãd-ad-Din,
Fat~, i~. On the battle of Hattin, see below, chapter XIX, pp. 6o8ff. 
mond of Tripoli and Guy, and the ensuing alliance between Raymond and the
sultan." Some of his troops were actually sent to reinforce the garrison
of Tiberias; consequently, Guy's first intention, under Templar instigation,
to attack Tiberias would have had the effect of setting the war in motion.
Early in i 187 Reginald of Kerak made his fatal blunder of attacking a caravan
from Cairo to Damascus, violating the truce, and refused to yield up his
booty in response either to the threats of Saladin or the appeals of the
king. The summonses went out to all Saladin's viceroys and vassals, while
he himself set out with his guard on March 14 to protect a homeward-bound
pilgrim-caravan. The Egyptian contingent, arriving after some delay, joined
in ravaging the lands of Kerak and Montréal, and returned with him
to Damascus two months later; meanwhile the contingents from Damascus, Aleppo,
Mesopotamia, Mosul, and Diyar-Bakr assembled at Rams al-Ma', and raided the
county of Tiberias. At ~affuriyah a body of Ternplars and Hospitallers, disregarding
Raymond's instructions, engaged a powerful force making a demonstration raid
on May r, and were killed or captured almost to a man. 
 At the end of May Saladin reviewed the combined armies at al' Ashtarã
in the Hauran. The regular cavalry contingents mustered 12,000, with possibly
as many again of auxiliary troops and irregulars. "To each emir he assigned
his, place on the left or right wing, from which he might not depart; no
contingent must absent itself, nor a single man leave. From each company
he picked out the advance guard of archers..., and said, ' When we enter
the enemy's territory, this is the order of our forces and these the positions
of our companies'."12 On Friday, June z6, he set out for Palestine and after
a halt of five days at al-Uqltuwanah, at the south end of the lake, advanced
into the hills above Tiberias. While the two armies lay opposite one another
Saladin, whether by accident or design, led his guards and siege personnel
to Tiberias on Thursday, July 2. Raymond's countess held the castle against
his assault, but her appeal to Guy for help secured the opportunity that
had been denied to him all these years, a set encounter in the field with
the forces of the kingdom. 
 The overwhelming character of the victory at Hattin (July 4, 1187) was proved
immediately by the tale of cities and fortresses that fell either to Saladin
personally (Acre, Toron, Sidon, Beirut) or to separate contingents under
their generals (Nazareth, Caesa 

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