First Crusade

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1099 Jun 7 - Jul 15

Siege of Jerusalem

Jerusalem, Israel

The crusaders reached Jerusalem, which had been recaptured from the Seljuqs by the Fatimids only the Year before, on 7 June. Many Crusaders wept upon seeing the city they had journeyed so long to reach. The Fatimid governor Iftikhar al-Dawla prepared the city for the siege as he heard about the arrival of the Crusaders. He prepared an elite troop of 400 Egyptian cavalry men and had expelled all the eastern Christians from the city due to the fear of betrayal from them (in the siege of Antioch an Armenian man named Firoz helped crusaders enter the city by opening the gates). To make the situation worse for the crusaders, ad-Daula poisoned or buried all the water wells, and cut down all trees outside Jerusalem. On 7 June 1099, the crusaders reached outside the fortifications of Jerusalem, which had been recaptured from the Seljuqs by the Fatimids only the Year before. The city was guarded by a defense wall 4 km long, 3 meters thick and 15 meters high, there were five major gates each guarded by a pair of towers. The Crusaders divided themselves into two large groups- Godfrey of Bouillon, Robert of Flanders and Tancred planned to besiege from north while, Raymond of Toulouse positioned his forces on the south.


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Last Updated: : Sat Jan 06 2024