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Re: Sinclair Dates 20 August 1191
Wallace-Murphy help! What is the relationship between The Knights
Hospitallers (the Knights of St. John of Rhodes and Malta) and the Knights
Richard I (the "Lionheart") butchered 3,000 Muslim prisoners in, on this
day 20 August. Akko The port city of Akko (also known as Acre) is located on
a promontory at the northern end of Haifa Bay. The earliest city was founded
during the Bronze Age at Tel Akko (in Arabic Tel el-Fukhar mound of the
potsherds), just east of the present-day city. Akko is mentioned in ancient
written sources as an important city on the northern coast of the Land of
The Crusaders, who founded the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem in 1099, On 26
May 1104, after months of heavy siege and with the help of the Genoese
fleet, the city surrendered and was handed over to King Baldwin I. Aware of
the significance of the city and its port for the security of their kingdom,
the Crusaders immediately began to construct a sophisticated system of
fortifications composed of walls and towers, unlike any built previously.
These fortifications were built along the sea to the west and south of the
city, while in the east and
north a mighty wall with a broad, deep moat separated the city from the
mainland. The port was also rebuilt it included an outer and an inner
harbor. A new breakwater was built, protected by a tower at its far end; it
is today known as the Tower of Flies.
The fortifications of Akko, in which the Crusaders had placed their trust,
fell relatively easily to the Muslims. Shortly after their victory at the
Battle of the Horns of Hattin, on 9 July 1187, the city surrendered to Salah
al-Din (Saladin) and its Christian inhabitants were evacuated with dignity
The Crusaders returned and laid siege to Akko in 1188, yet did not succeed
in penetrating the massive fortifications, which they themselves had built.
But the Muslims surrendered to Richard the Lion Heart, King of England and
Philip Augustus, King of France (leaders of the Third Crusade) on 12 July
1191. For the following 100 years, the Crusaders ruled Akko. During the 13th
century, it served as the political and administrative capital of the Latin
kingdom. Akko was the Crusaders'' foothold in the Holy Land, a mighty
fortress facing constant Muslim threat. Its port served as the Crusader
Kingdom''s link with Christian Europe, and also for trans-shipment westward
of valuable cargoes originating in the east.
The palace (castrum) of the Crusader kings was located in the northern part
of the urban area of Akko, enclosed by massive fortifications. Near the
harbor, merchant quarters known as communes were established by the Italian
maritime cities of Venice, Pisa and Genoa. Each quarter had a marketplace
with warehouses and shops, and dwellings for the merchant families. There
were also centres for the various military orders the Hospitalers, the
Templars and others, who were responsible for defence of the Latin Kingdom.
Throughout the city, a number of public buildings, such as churches and
hospices, were constructed.
At the start of the 13th century, a new residential quarter called
Montmusard founded north of the city. It was surrounded by its own wall
(probably also a double wall). In the middle of the century, sponsored by
Louis IX of France, Akko expanded and became prosperous. With a population
of about 40,000, it was the largest city of the Crusader Kingdom.
The last battle between the Crusaders and the Muslims for control of Akko
began in 1290. Besieged by the Mamluks under al-Ashraf Khalil, a portion of
the northern wall was penetrated; the city was conquered on 18 May 1291. The
date marks the end of the Crusader presence in the Holy Land.
The city was captured (AD. 638) by the Arabs, who developed its natural
harbor. In 1104 it was captured in the First Crusade and was held by
Christians until 1187, when it was taken by Saladin. In the Third Crusade it
was won back (1191) by Guy of Lusignan, Richard I of England, and Philip II
of France, who gave it to the Knights Hospitallers (the Knights of St.
John). For the next century it was the centre of the Christian possessions
in the Holy Land. Its surrender and virtual destruction by the Saracens in
1291 marked the decline of the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem and the Crusades.
Akko was taken by the Ottoman Turks in 1517 and was revived in the late 18th
cent. under Dahir al-Umar, the local Ottoman ruler. In 1799, Ottoman forces,
with the aid of Great Britain, withstood a 61-day siege by Napoleon. The
city was taken in 1832 by Ibrahim Pasha for Muhammad Ali of Egypt, but
European and Ottoman forces won it back for the Ottoman Empire in 1840.
British troops captured the city in 1918. The Balfour Declaration gave it to
the Arabs but the Jews took it in 1948 and have held it ever since.
----- Original Message -----
From: "John S. Quarterman" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
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