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ntioch is both a city and an area on the eastern coast of the Mediterranean. It was one of four Crusader states created at the end of the First Crusade. The other three being Jerusalem, Edessa and Tripoli. Bohemund I was the first ruler or prince of Antioch and he ruled from 1098. Antioch was captured by the Muslims in 1268.
In October of 1097 the Crusaders had reached Antioch. The march had been long and difficult and many had died or deserted due to starvation, diseases and the very wet weather. At once they laid siege to the city. The Turks in the city were prepared and waited to be rescued. ¹
The siege of Antioch was ended not by force but by betrayal. A hand full of Crusaders climbed a ladder into the city and simply opened the gates from the inside. The hoard of the Christian army surged into the city killing anyone or anything in their way. The destruction was brutal and no mercy was shown. As soon as the Crusaders were in the city the situation changed. Outside a Moslem army arrived and in turn besieged the city. Some Crusaders managed to escape over the walls and flee but the majority were trapped without food in the city. ¹
Spurred on by the find of the Spear of Longinus, the spear that was supposed to have pierced Jesus on the cross, the Crusaders emerged from the city of Antioch to face the Moslems. The Moslems were defeated, many being killed and many fleeing. After the batlle the ownership of the city was disputed. Bohemund and Raymond of Toulouse argued over its possession and after several months of debate Raymond accepted Bohemund's right to it. In truth, the city should have been handed over to Emporer Alexius. ¹
King Richard I met Guy of Lusignan (King of Jerusalem), Geoffrey (Richard's brother), Bohemund (Prince of Antioch), Raymond (Count of Tripoli), Humphrey of Toron and other knights to discuss the attempt by Philippe II of France to replace Guy of Lusignan with Conrad of Montferrat as the King of Jerusalem. ¹
Selection of references used:
1. J.D.Griffith Davies, England in the Medieval Ages, 1928
2. Z.N. Brooke, A History of Europe
3. C.H.Frith, Cromwell, 1935
4. John Gillingham, The Life and Times of Richard I, 1974