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Hazard, H. W. (ed.) / Volume III: The fourteenth and fifteenth centuries

X: The Kingdom of Cyprus, 1291-1369,   pp. 340-360 PDF (10.3 MB)

Page 345

 THE KINGDOM OF CYPRUS, 1291—1 369 345Ch. X 
reconciling Amalric and king Henry. The nuncio made it clear to Amairic that
opinion in Europe was against him, but the lord of Tyre, while willing to
increase the king's allowance and permit Henry, after agreeing to his conditions,
to return to Cyprus, declared that he would never surrender the governorship.
So the nuncio next proceeded to Cilicia to convey these terms to the king
and actually induced him to accept them, an achievement rather difficult
to understand after Henry's stubborn defense of his rights through four perilous
years. The explanation may be that the close and harsh confinement to which
he was being subjected in the Cilician fortress of Lampron had now caused
him to abandon all hope. 
 At all events, by the end of March the nuncio was back in Cyprus with Henry's
agreement and presented it to Amalric for confirmation. But the governor
delayed affixing his signature, possibly owing to preoccupation with the
arraignment of the Templars, which had already been initiated in Paris in
1307 and now opened, so far as the members of the order in Cyprus were concerned,
in April 13 10, a few days after the nuncio's return. He was destined never
to sign it at all because on June 5 he was murdered in the palace by his
favorite, Simon de Montolif, who then escaped from Nicosia, was believed
to have made his way on board some ship, and was never heard of again. While
the motives for this deed have remained obscure, they have not been traced
to any organized conspiracy by adherents of the king, whom Amalric had been
able either to banish or to keep in subjection. 
 Nevertheless, with the usurper dead, the loyalists lifted up their heads
and, rallying round the queen, took immediate steps to recall the people's
allegiance to their lawful ruler. The constable Aimery indeed, backed by
the murdered man's widow Isabel, titular lady of Tyre, quickly secured from
the high court the nomination as governor in Amairic's place. But he was
unable to maintain himself for long in the face of the strong sentiment in
Henry's favor that was manifested by the knights and the towns. Limassol
and Paphos declared for Henry, and one Aygue de Bessan was chosen as captain
of the army and lieutenant of the king for the whole of Cyprus. 
 Negotiations were now opened with king Oshin to secure Henry's return from
Cilicia. For by June 13 the king had been proclaimed in Nicosia; the chancery
had returned to the palace; and the constable with his henchman the prince
of Galilee had come to terms with the queen, in consideration of her undertaking
to do her best to secure pardons or amnesties for those who made their submission.

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