Siege of Antioch is Begun by Christian Crusaders of the First Crusade Hot

Siege of Antioch is Begun by Christian Crusaders of the First Crusade

Siege of Antioch

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Siege of Antioch: The Crusaders' siege of the strategically important city of Antioch begins. Located in the mountainous region of Orontes and on the main route into Palestine, Antioch had never been captured by any means other than treachery.

Antioch is so large that the Crusader army is unable to completely surround it; also guaranteeing a long siege is the fact that before the Crusaders arrived, the Muslim governor of the city, Yaghi-Siyan, stockpiled large quantities of food because he knew that a Crusader army was coming.

During this siege Crusaders learn to chew on the reeds known to Arabs as sukkar — this is their first experience with sugar, and they come to like it. By early 1098, though, one in seven of the Crusaders will be starving to death, leading to widespread desertions.

Finally, in June 1098, the Crusaders are able to enter the city — but not the citadel, which the Muslims are able to hold on to. For the next month, the Crusaders will themselves be under siege from a Muslim relief force commanded by Kerbogha. When the Crusaders exit the city to defeat that relief force, the last defenders in the citadel of Antioch will surrender.

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Siege of Antioch

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