Muslim Perspectives on the Military Orders during the Crusades

On July 4, 1187, the armies of Saladin, sultan of Egypt and Syria, surrounded thousands of Crusaders surmounting the Horns of Hattin (fig. 1) near Tiberias in Galilee. Exhausted by heat, thirst, and days of marching and fighting, the Crusaders were forced to surrender. Thousands of the resulting prisoners were sold into slavery, but not all. While King Guy and the Frankish aristocrats who had led their followers to disaster were allowed for the most part to ransom themselves, the knights of Military Orders faced a different fate. After his triumphant victory, Saladin singled out the captive Templar and Hospitallers for execution.

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