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Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology



Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology & the Ancient World
Brown University
Box 1837 / 60 George Street
Providence, RI 02912
Telephone: (401) 863-3188
Fax: (401) 863-9423
[email protected]

The County of Edessa was the first crusader state which lasted from 1098 to 1148. It stretched from Antioch in the east, north into Armenia, and into the Jazira (northern Iraq); it was the largest crusader state in terms of territory (but the smallest in terms of population). Edessa was the only landlocked crusader state, and half of its terrority lay to the east of the Euphrates which rendered it vulnerable to attacks. These geographical features made Edessa the weakest and least Latinized crusader state. Most of the inhabitants of Edessa were Christian, specifically Assyrians, Jacobites and Armenian Orthodox, although there were a number of Muslims and Greek Orthodox as well. A Roman Catholic patriarch was placed in Edessa, but there was never a large population of crusader settlers. Edessa became a crusader state when Baldwin of Boulogne left the main crusading army and established himself in the ancient city of Edessa, where he became ruler in 1098. The county passed into the hands of a series of rulers before it was lost in a seige to the Muslim military leader Zengi, father of Nur ad-Din, in December 1144, thus initiating the Second Crusade.

Posted at Apr 10/2009 01:26PM:
ian: Looks good.