Byzantium and the Crusades

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A&C Black, Aug 15, 2006 - History - 259 pages
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The first great city to which the Crusaders came in 1096 was not Jerusalem but Constantinople. Almost as much as Jerusalem itself, Constantinople was the key to the foundation, survival and ultimate eclipse of the crusading kingdom. The Byzantines had developed an ideology over seven hundred years which placed Constantinople, rather than Rome or Jerusalem, at the centre of the world. The attitudes of its rulers reflected this priority, and led to tension with the crusaders over military and diplomatic strategy. At the same time, the riches and sophistication of the great city made a lasting impression on the crusaders. In the end, the lure of the city's wealth was fatal to the claims of Christian unity. In April 1204, the Fourth Crusade under the Venetian doge Enricho Dandolo captured and sacked Constantinople, signalling the effective end of almost a thousand years of Byzantine dominance in the east.
 

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Byzantium and the Crusades

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These timely volumes trace centuries of conflict between Christians and the followers of other faiths, including Islam. Medievalist Hindley (The Shaping of Europe) concentrates on the best-known ... Read full review

Contents

The Empire of Christ i
1
The Rulers of the Empire
15
The Search for Security
33
The Passage of the First Crusade
53
Jerusalem and Antioch
73
Innovation and Continuity
93
Andronicus
127
The Fall of Constantinople
145
Recovery
163
Survival
183
Bibliography
227
Index
245
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Contesting the Crusades
Norman Housley
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About the author (2006)

Jonathan Harris taught English in Turkey before completing his doctorate in Byzantine History in 1993. He is currently Reader in Byzantine History at Royal Holloway, University of London, UK. He is the author of Byzantium and the Crusades (Continuum).

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