Wolff, R. L.; Hazard, H. W. (ed.) / Volume II: The later Crusades, 1189-1311
II: The Third Crusade: Richard the Lionhearted and Philip Augustus, pp. 44-85 PDF (16.9 MB)
46 A HISTORY OF THE CRUSADES II William III, marquis of Montferrat; Roger de Mowbray, lord of Thirsk in Yorkshire; and many another baron, knight, and sergeant were captured. Large numbers of Christians were slain in the battle, and Saladin slaughtered all the rank and file of the Temple and Hospital who fell into his hands. The True Cross, borne in the midst of the host by a succession of prelates, came into the possession of the "infidels". In mustering his army to meet Saladin's invasion king Guy had drained his fortresses of their garrisons. Except for Raymond III, count of Tripoli, Reginald, lord of Sidon, and Balian of Ibelin, who had escaped from the field of Hattin, the realm of Jerusalem was leaderless.1 Acre fell almost at once, and Saladin soon conquered most of the other towns and castles. By the end of 1187 the only important towns still holding out were Tyre, Tripoli, and Antioch. Tyre was saved by a stroke of chance - the fortuitous arrival of an able, vigorous soldier of high rank. Conrad of Montferrat, eldest surviving son of marquis William, and uncle of the young king Baldwin V of Jerusalem, had started for the Holy Land in 1185. Conrad had stopped in Constantinople and entered the service of Emperor Isaac II Angelus. When he learned of the threatened invasion of the kingdom of Jerusalem, he obtained the emperor's leave to go to Palestine. The ship bearing him and his small band arrived at Acre after its capture by Saladin. Fortunately for the Franks Conrad discovered the state of affairs before he landed, and promptly sailed up the coast to Tyre. He found that city about to surrender. The commander of the town, lacking both garrison and supplies, had agreed with Saladin on terms of capitulation. But the citizens took heart from Conrad's arrival, delivered the city to him, and prepared to defend it under his leadership.2 Tyre became the refuge for the inhabitants of the places captured by Saladin during the following months, for the sultan's conquest of the kingdom of Jerusalem was no orgy of bloodshed. Although Saladin was fully capable of savage cruelty, he preferred to be merciful - especially when mercy paid. The towns of the kingdom were leaderless and had almost no soldiers, but they were strongly fortified. The inhabitants were discouraged by the loss of the leaders and troops, and were willing to surrender in exchange for their lives. Saladin's troops were horsemen who felt at home only in the open field and had no taste for attacking fortifications. Hence it was good policy 1 Bahã'-ad-Din, pp. 113-114; Eracles, pp. 65-67; Gesta, II, 12, 22. For details see volume I of the present work: chapters XVIII and XIX, map 14, and the supplementary list of towns and fortresses in the gazetteer. 2 Eracles, pp. 15-16, 73-76; Bernard le Trésorier, pp. 179-182. Baldwin V died in 1186.
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