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

Page View

Wolff, R. L.; Hazard, H. W. (ed.) / Volume II: The later Crusades, 1189-1311

III: The Crusades of Frederick Barbarossa and Henry VI,   pp. 86-122 PDF (16.5 MB)

Page 112

was any in the army, were guarded like gold and hidden away." On the
following day, "with the help of St. George", Frederick himself
met and routed the main Turkish army. The "great king was knocked from
his horse by a knight, and one of his barons had his right arm, together
with the sleeve of the corselet, cut off by the blow of a sword." To
one Turkish emir this was the victory of "seven thousand white-clad
horsemen sitting on white horses who very roughly cut us all down with .the
lances they carried." On the eve of that day they "pitched camp,
though without water or grass. As a result uncounted numbers of beasts of
burden perished", and "the men too were dry with excessive thirst.
On the next morning, like wanderers about to die, we went on wretchedly,
with some drinking their own urine, some the blood of horses, others chewing
horse manure for the moisture, many chewing a cud of tufts of grass."31
 For the attack on Iconium, which the Germans felt they must take to secure
their march, they rallied themselves, after Frederick had rejected an offer
of the Turks to allow them to pass and to supply them with provisions for
"three hundred pounds of gold and the land of the Armenians". "Rather
than making a royal highway with gold and silver," Frederick had said,
"with the help of our Lord Jesus Christ, whose knights we are, the road
will have to be opened with iron."32 On the 17th the German army camped
in the "garden and pleasure ground of the sultan" outside the city
limits. On the following morning the army was divided into two groups, one
under the duke of Swabia and the other under the emperor. The former was
to attack Iconium while Barbarossa remained outside the city.33 
 In view of the condition of the German army the assault proceeded with unusual
ease. On the way to the city the advancing troops of duke Frederick met the
German envoy to the Turks, Godfrey of Wiesenbach, and were told that "God
has given this city and the land into your hands." The old sultan, who
with his army had fled the first sight of the German troops, took refuge
in the fortress which rose above the city and into which "almost all
the citizens of the city, both rich and poor, withdrew, carrying with them
an infinite store of gold and silver and a great abundance of provisions."
Duke Frederick took the first gate of the city by assault, beat down the
Turkish resistance, and advanced to the 
 31 Ansbert, pp. 80-83. 
 32 Ibid., p. 83, lines 20-22. 
 33 The account of the siege is given in Ansbert, pp. 84-86. 

Go up to Top of Page