By David Nicolle
Crusader castles and different fortifications in Cyprus, the south-western coast of Turkey, and Greece are among the finest examples of past due medieval army structure to be obvious in Europe. those very important fortifications, erected via the Hospitallers in the course of the fifteenth century to stand the starting to be Ottoman Turkish risk, fluctuate significantly from these within the center East. regardless of there being many obvious is still of fortifications in Cyprus, Greece, and the Aegean, few reviews exist of those parts in comparison to the fortifications of the Holy Land.
Providing quite a few architectural plans, maps, and colour illustrations, this e-book seeks to redress this imbalance and supplement the former bestselling remedies of Crusader fortifications within the castle sequence.
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Extra info for Crusader Castles in Cyprus, Greece and the Aegean 1191-1571 (Fortress, Volume 59)
Turkish-Islamic naval raiding increased in the 14th century. Several Crusader expeditions were launched in response, but had only a short-lived impact with the beyliks of Karasi, Saruhan, Mentese, and above all Aydin soon reviving to dominate much of the Aegean. Most Turkish fleets consisted of large numbers of small ships rather than the great war-galleys preferred by Christian naval powers. Turkish naval tactics also focussed on transporting men and horses as raiding parties – sometimes even carrying siege machines to attack coastal fortifications.
It is interesting to note that amongst the troops the Angevin ruler sent to his garrisons in Albania in the 1270s were hundreds of Muslim ‘Saracens from Lucera’, mostly archers and crossbowmen. But as a shortage of troops became more serious, the Angevins increasingly recruited Greeks and Albanians – a pool of manpower that was also vital to the Byzantine rulers of this region. Little is known about the arsenals that clearly existed in several fortresses. Archaeologists uncovered a large store of crossbow boltheads in the castle at Paphos, along with about 1,500 stone mangonel balls, seemingly stored on a terrace that collapsed during the earthquake.
After the Angevin rulers of southern Italy took over Achaea in 1278, the area was governed by officials, who were in charge of the main castles and garrisons. Once the Crusader aristocracy started paying the adoha tax rather than offering personal military service, castle garrisons increasingly consisted of mercenaries. Their pay varied according to circumstances, but an ordnance of Nicolas de Joinville (1323–25) was seemingly intended to fix the pay for men-at-arms at 800 hyperperes per year if the soldier came from overseas, and 600 if he was local.