14

They were ALL French. The House of Plantagenet (especially early on), in fact ALL of the Angevins, are French. They all spoke French (or a dialect thereof) as a FIRST language. Richard himself didn't speak English.


13

The groundwork that allowed the use of the strait by the crusaders began much earlier than 1190, and has as much to do with other political and military developments around the Iberian peninsula than anything else. The Almohadin fleet had been for centuries a dominant force in the region, and has essentially controlled access to the Mediterranean for 400 ...


10

Saladin was actually at war with the Almohads. The latter were probably pleased to see the crusaders arrive on the scene. There is a good article on this by A. Baadj in "Al-Qanṭara", 2013, pp. 276-295. A pdf is available on "Google Scholar".


6

That 14th century passage of Richard eating Saracens is fictitious, for reasons @T.E.D. has gone into. Richard Coer de Lyon is a romance, not history. In this story, King Richard first became a cannibal when he requested pork to cure himself of a malady, and was given a Saracen instead - as a practical joke by his knights. Richard Coer de Lyon is a ...


5

At this point in history the Northern European galleys were much faster and seaworthy than anything the Arabs were building. Also, in arms the Northern Europeans had caught up with the Arabs, and exceeded them by far in the quality of shields and armor. Richard's knights were fully armored in steel while the typical Spanish arab was wearing cloth robes and a ...


5

I believe Saladin showed kindness to Richard the Lionheart not because of religion or to spy, though that is a distinct possibility, but because of Saladin's respect towards Richard, even though they were enemies. This respect of an enemy is common throughout history, though not expressed like Saladin with gifts. Julius Caesar had respect for Pompey, ...


4

As this was the height of the Middle Ages, our sources for these kinds of things quite frankly stink. The legend about King Richard seems to come from a "ballad-chronicle". They were sort of the lowbrow popular equivalent to the Romantic Epic. These were stories sung by bards chiefly for the purpose of entertainment. The accurate recounting of historical ...


2

In his book The Crusades: The War for the Holy Land, Thomas Asbridge states that Angevin envoys requested "fruit and ice" from Saladin when Richard I was ill.


2

Excellent article explaining the timeline, each crusade and the complex relationship between Saladin and the Berberic Empire: The crusades were a series of holy wars called by popes with the promise of indulgences for those who fought in them and directed against external and internal enemies of Christendom for the recovery of Christian property or in ...


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