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to be that King Richard would have been better employed in minding the affairs of his own kingdom, and that he failed notably to do any good in the Holy Land. It should not, however, be forgotten that King Richard wrested half his conquests from his great adversary, and that the Eastern Question in the twelfth century was as important and harassing to Europe as it is in our own times. The great families of "Outre Mer" were intimately connected, by birth and intermarriage, with the kings and princes of the West. The Courtenays of Edessa, the Italian Normans from Sicily in Antioch, the Angevin and Lusignan houses in Jerusalem, had behind them strong family influences in France, England, and Italy; and an extensive trade with the East had been organised by Venice, Genoa, Pisa, and Marseilles during the ninety years in which the Holy Land was ruled by the Latin Christians. By his success in the East Richard became the hero of Christendom, and the most admired prince in Europe. He restored to the Templars and Hospitallers, and to the rulers of Lebanon, all their best lands in the shore plains, and to the great trading cities all their ports in the Levant. He added to the Latin possessions an island equal in area to the Syrian domains, by the conquest of Cyprus; and he made with Saladin a treaty which became the basis of many succeeding agreements. It was not merely from religious motives that the European princes spent their treasure on the Holy Land, for the spread of Moslem power was arrested, and ceased to menace the Mediterranean, while the commerce of the East continued to enrich the poorer lands of the West.
This episode of European history
is thus worthy of greater consideration than it usually obtains, while the picturesque and romantic character of the events is brought vividly before us in the chronicles mentioned. The five years which intervened between the disastrous battle of Hattîn and the final treaty with Saladin were full of wonderful events, and the struggle between France, England, and Germany on the one side, and Egypt, Syria, and Mesopotamia on the other, was of far-reaching influence on the immediate future.
For more than sixty years the kingdom won by the Latins under Godfrey de Bouillon in 1099 A.D. had grown stronger and more prosperous. It included the whole of Western Palestine, and the regions east of Jordan excepting Bashan; and its frontiers were guarded by a line of mighty castles. On the north the whole Lebanon as far as the Orontes was ruled by the allied Princes of Antioch and Counts of Tripoli; but the great province of Edessa, stretching over the Euphrates almost to the Tigris, which had been occupied in 1098 by Baldwin, brother of Godfrey de Bouillon, had fallen before Zanghi, the first Atabek Sultan of Môsul, in 1144 A.D. The native subjects of the Latins were partly oriental Christians and partly Sunnee Moslems. Both alike appear to have been content under the strong and wise rule of the Franks; and Islam was still divided by the internecine hatred of the Sunnees, who acknowledged the supremacy of the Khalif of Baghdad as 8 religious head, and of the Shi'ah or "sectaries" of 'Ali, who followed the Fatimite Khalif of Egypt. We hear little during this period of any internal troubles in Syria; and the frontiers west of the Euphrates had, so far, been successfully maintained, and were
constantly strengthened by the building of new castles.
Yet there were already signs of danger on every side; and not only valour but wise statesmanship was greately needed, to preserve the Latin supremacy. The Egyptians were weak, and the communication with Europe might easily be threatened by any strong Moslem Power able to hold the Nile mouths, and to employ the fleets of the Delta. On the east the two sons of Zanghi were united in determination to wrest Palestine from the Franks; and Nûr ed Dîn, who inherited his father's power in Aleppo and Damascus, was a formidable foe. On the north the Christian kingdom of Lesser Armenia (in Cilicia) bordered on Antioch, but the Armenians looked coldly on the Latins, and were threatened themselves on the west by the Sultans of Iconium-the last representatives of the Seljuks who had founded the Turkish empire in the eleventh century under Melek Shah. The Greek Emperor of Byzantium (Manuel Comnenos) was friendly to the kings of Jerusalem, but the enmity of the Greek clergy to the Latins, who had set up their own Patriarch and bishops in the place of the Greeks, had become more and more bitter as time passed by; and the Greek populace shared the opinions of their priests. In Europe the wars had so distracted the various kingdoms that no armies had come for fourteen years to help the Franks against the Turks, nor did any such help reach Syria until Europe was roused, too late, by the news of Saladin's surprising success. Such briefly was the condition of the East when the unfortunate Amaury, second son of Fulk of Anjou, succeeded his brother on the throne of Jerusalem in 1162 A.D. The former kings had been
distinguished for gallantry and justice, but Amaury was half Armenian by birth, and was neither loved nor trusted by his subjects. The policy which he adopted of attempting to conquer Egypt weakened his kingdom, and failed as all other Frankish attempts on Cairo failed both before and after his time. He received no help from Europe, nor was his alliance with Manuel Comnenos of any use. Nûr ed Dîn despatched successive expeditions under Shirkoh (Saladin's uncle) to help the Egyptians, and on the death of the vizir of the last Fatimite Khalif (El 'Adîd) in 1169, Shirkoh became Sultan of Egypt, and was succeeded two months later by his nephew. In 1171 El 'Adîd died, and three years later Amaury was succeeded by his leper son Baldwin IV. Nûr ed Dîn also died in 1174, and left only a boy as his heir. By this rapid series of important changes Saladin became suddenly the greatest power in the Moslem world, and having proclaimed the religious supremacy of the Khalif of Baghdad at Cairo, he united the forces of Islam in Egypt, and in Syria east of the Jordan and of the Orontes.
Yusef Ibn Eyûb Salâh ed Dîn was born in 1137 A.D., the son of a Kurdish governor at Tekrît on the Tigris, named Eyûb, who was much trusted by Sultan Zanghi. Eyûb followed Nûr ed Dîn to Syria, and became governor of Baalbek. He defended Damascus against Louis VII. of France in 1148; and his brother Shirkoh, in 1163, took with him to Egypt his young nephew, whose ambition was not yet awakened, and who, according to his own statement, was very unwilling to leave Damascus. Succeeding Shirkoh as Sultan at Cairo, and becoming
practically independent of his master Nûr ed Dîn, Saladin's reputation increased so rapidly that he was willingly received at Damascus in place of the youthful heir, Melek es Sâleh, who retreated to Aleppo in 1174. But the position of the popular usurper presented many difficulties, not only in Egypt, and in Yemen, which his brother Turan Shah subdued in the same year, but yet more on account of the jealousy of the earlier dynasties-the Seljuks of Iconium and the Atabeks of Môsul. The strong Castle of Kerak, on the cliffs east of the Dead Sea, was also held by Renaud of Châtillon, and barred the road from Damascus to Mecca and to Egypt. To attack the Christian kingdom was thus impossible until some arrangement had been made with the Atabek family, while the possession of Kerak— the great Eastern outpost of the Latins-was also one of the first objects of Saladin's campaigns. It is unnecessary to detail all the operations by which the great leader succeeded in securing his base, during more than twenty years of strenuous effort. He defeated the Atabeks, and finally entered into alliance with them. He attacked Kerak again and again, and he raided into the king dom from the south and from the east, but he was defeated at Gezer in 1177, and near Tabor in 1183; and his assaults seemed to give little promise of the astonishing victory won four years later at Hattin. In 1185 the leper King Baldwin IV. died, and was followed by his infant nephew Baldwin V. a year later, when the unfortunate Guy of Lusignan, second husband of Queen Sibyl-Amaury's eldest daughter-was very unwillingly accepted by the Latin barons as king. The loss of Pales
tine appears to have been mainly due to the weakness and incapacity of this last actual King of Jerusalem.
The character of Saladin, as depicted by Boha ed Dîn, was singularly noble and attractive. He was strict in all religious duties, and zealous in the collection of traditions concerning the Prophet. He was very temperate and abstemious, and his energy was such as to wear out his strength at the early age of fiftythree. His kindness to the poor, his modesty his modesty and simplicity, his justice and mercy, are attested by many anecdotes; and the advice which he gave to his son, Melek edh Dhâher, on sending him to rule in Aleppo, perhaps best summarises his character in his own words.
"I commend you," he said, "to the Most High, the giver of all good. Do thou His will, for that is the way of peace. Beware of bloodshed, for spilt blood never sleeps; and seek the hearts of thy people, and care for them, for thou art sent by God and by me for their good. Try to gain the hearts of the emirs, the rulers, and the nobles. I have become great as I am because I won men's hearts
by gentleness and kindness. Nourish no hatred against any one, for death spares none. Be prudent in dealing with men, for God will not pardon if they do not forgive; but between Him and thee He will pardon, if thou dost repent, for He is most gracious."
Since the days of Omar no such Moslem as Saladin had arisen, nor after him was there any other such. The simple tomb in the courtyard of the great mosque at Damascus enshrines the memory of one of the noblest natures that Islam ever knew. Those who charge against the Moslem faith all the cruelties which disgraced warriors like Bibars and Timur-forgetful of the cruelties which have been
recorded against Christians also— should remember that Saladin's character was formed by the influence of the words of Muhammad, and on the example of Omar.
When Guy of Lusignan acceded, a truce had been made between Saladin and the Christians. It was broken by Renaud of Châtillon, lord of Kerak, who seized the pilgrims from Mecca and murdered them near Petra. A holy war was proclaimed, and forces from Môsul were sent to aid Saladin, in consequence of this outrage. Renaud, who had come from France with Louis VII., was ambitious and unscrupulous, embittered by seventeen years of captivity at Aleppo, and hated by Moslems already for his daring attempt to capture Medina-the city sacred as the Prophet's home in 1183 A.D. His stepson, the younger Humphrey of Toron, had married Isabel, the second daughter of King Amaury, in the following year, and the wedding-feast was being held in the grim Castle of Kerak, when Saladin advanced to besiege the place. Renaud sent out meat and wine to the enemy, and Saladin in return gave orders that the tower in which the bride and bridegroom lived was not to be attacked during the assault. Such were the courtesies of war in this strange age; but Saladin never forgave the murder of the pilgrims travelling in faith of the truce, and Renaud paid the penalty of his treachery soon after.
An army of 50,000 men gathered to King Guy at the Fountain of Sepphoris, north-west of Nazareth. All the fortresses were denuded of troops the Templars and Hospitallers gathered to the camp at Sepphoris; and the Patriarch brought the true cross. The advance-guard of the Moslems, under Saladin's son Melek el Afdal, met
the Masters of the Temple and Hospital, who had only 150 knights, on the 1st May 1187 at Kefr Kenna, and defeated them. The Master of the Hospital and the Marshal of the Templars were slain; and on the 26th June the whole army of Saladin crossed the Jordan by the bridge south of the Sea of Galilee, and, turning north, sacked Tiberias and besieged the castle, also occupying the heights to the west, where the dark crags called "Horns of Hattîn look down on the quiet lake to the east, and over the open corn-plain to the west. A march of ten miles thus separated the two armies; and though there was plenty of water both at Sepphoris to the west and at Hattîn to the east, between the two camps the country was dry and waterless. The position of Saladin was nevertheless one of great danger. On the south the basalt fortress of Belvoir, on the plateau south-west of Tiberias, threatened his line of retreat. On the north he could not cross the Jordan above the Sea of Galilee, for the only bridge was commanded by the recently built fort called Château Neuf. It would seem clear that if, while holding him in front, a strong force had been thrown into Belvoir and had attacked the southern bridges, all the Moslem army would have been cut off, and might have been driven into the lake; but this turning movement was for some reason never attempted.
On the 1st July a council was held at Sepphoris, and Raymond of Tripoli, whose wife was besieged in Tiberias, gave his opinion that it would be fatal to attempt an advance over the waterless plain. The Templars, furious at their defeat, advised an immediate attack; and in the night Gerard de Ridfort, the Grand Master, per
suaded the vacillating king to sound his trumpets and call all his host to arms. In the early morning they set out on their fatal march, and crossed the plain harassed by the Moslem light horse, and surrounded by the smoke and flames of the burning stubble. In the afternoon they reached the village of Lûbieh, about a mile to the south-west of Hattîn-a small village without water, standing on a low limestone ridge. Watching all night in their armour, without water and surrounded by fire, the Christian host was utterly exhausted and unfit to fight, long before they came within striking distance of the foe, which awaited them covering the springs. The foot-soldiers threw away their arms, and went over to the Moslems to beg for water. The Knights were exhausted by fruitless charges against horsemen who fled whenever they rode out; and the Christian army melted away before any counter-attack was made. Raymond of Tripoli cut his way through the Turks with a few Knights, and escaped to Tyre, while the little group, which rallied on the "Horns of Hattin" to protect the Cross, was gradually hemmed in and forced to surrender. Among them were King Guy and his brother, with Humphrey of Toron, Renaud of Châtillon, Odo of Gebal, and all the surviving Templars and Hospitallers. Thus, through the over-confidence of the Grand Master of the Templars and the weakness of Guy, and in spite of the wise advice of Raymond of Tripoli, a fatal defeat was inflicted on Christendom, and the kingdom so painfully built up during a century by the Latins was lost in a day.
Saladin sat before the tent which was being pitched near the village of Hattin, and the prisoners were
brought before him. Iced sherbet was offered to the king, who drank and passed it to Renaud of Châtillon. "Tell him," said Saladin to the interpreter, "that he, and not I, gives drink to that man." The customs of oriental hospitality were known to all, and the words sealed Renaud's fate. Saladin reproached him with his treachery and cruelty, and offered him the choice of infidels the Korân or death. Renaud refused to abjure his faith, and Saladin with his own sword clove his shoulder. The guards cut off his head, and every Templar and every Hospitaller was likewise beheaded; but the rest were treated with courtesy and kindness, and sent prisoners to Damascus.
The news of this great victory sped fast to Moslem lands on every side, and the heavy tidings were carried over Europe, where a crusade was preached in haste. With overpowering energy Saladin swept over the whole of Syria and Palestine, denuded of its garrisons, and by the 3d May 1190 every city and castle had surrendered to, or had been taken by, Moslem assault, excepting only Antioch, Tripoli, and Tyre. Conrad of Montferrat-related to Philip II. of France-held Tyre, and caused a great picture to be painted, representing a Moslem horseman defiling the Holy Sepulchre. This was carried over the sea, and shown, amid tears and groans, in cities and markets of the West. All Europe armed for vengeance; but the German army, which was the first to set out, fell to pieces under the attacks of the Turks of Iconium; and Frederic Barbarossa the emperor was drowned in a small stream near Tarsus, on the borders of Lesser Armenia. Jerusalem surrendered on the 2d October 1189, when the Mosque was purified from the altars and