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Ambroise

(fl. c. 1178—1205) crusader and historian


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Late 12th-C. Norman jongleur, possibly from Evreux. Ambroise participated in the Third Crusade and composed a lengthy verse Estoire de la guerre sainte (History of the Holy War) in Old French after his return from the Levant. Its vivid portrayal of the heroic deeds of Richard I Lionheart espouses the perspective of the average Crusader and describes, for example, the relations of the Greek population of Messina with the Crusaders (vv. 601–06) and the ruins of Rhodes (1287–1302). His account of Richard's conflict with Isaac Komnenos of Cyprus and the king's conquest of the island (1355–2106) includes a description of Isaac's Greek and Armenian troops (1439–1700), his magnificent tent and gold and silver dishes (1669–72), the superb Byz. war horses (e.g., 1842–50, 1938), and Richard's shaving of Byz. burghers who surrendered to him (1948). The Estoire was translated into Latin and incorporated into the revised version of Itinerarium peregrinorum by 1222.

From The Oxford Dictionary of Byzantium in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Medieval and Renaissance History (500 to 1500).


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