Fourth Crusade

Venetian Contract
Venetian Contract ©Image Attribution forthcoming. Image belongs to the respective owner(s).
1201 Mar 1

Venetian Contract

Venice, Italy

Boniface and the other leaders sent envoys to Venice, Genoa, and other city-states in 1200 to negotiate a contract for transport to Egypt, the stated objective of their crusade. Earlier crusades focused on Palestine had involved the slow movement of large and disorganised land hosts across a generally hostile Anatolia. Egypt was now the dominant Muslim power in the eastern Mediterranean but also a major trading partner of Venice. An attack on Egypt would clearly be a maritime enterprise, requiring the creation of a fleet. Genoa was uninterested, but in March 1201 negotiations were opened with Venice, which agreed to transport 33,500 crusaders, a very ambitious number. This agreement required a full year of preparation on the part of the Venetians to build numerous ships and train the sailors who would man them, all the while curtailing the city's commercial activities.;


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Last Updated: : Fri Jan 05 2024