Baldwin II (Jerusalem)

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Baldwin hands over the temple of Solomon to Hugo von Payns and Gottfried von Saint-Omer

Baldwin of Bourcq (* before 1080; † August 21, 1131 ) was Lord of Bourcq , Count of Edessa from 1100 to 1118 and, as Baldwin II, King of Jerusalem from 1118 until his death .


He was a son of Hugo I, Count von Rethel .

From 1096 to 1099 he took part in the First Crusade to the Holy Land . There his cousin Balduin of Boulogne left him the county of Edessa in 1101 when he became king of Jerusalem. When Baldwin of Boulogne died childless in 1118, he also succeeded him on the throne of Jerusalem. He left the county of Edessa to his cousin (the mothers were sisters) Joscelin von Courtenay .

As Count of Edessa, Baldwin was captured by the Seljuks after the Battle of Harran in 1104 and only released again in 1108.

Almost immediately after his accession to the throne in Jerusalem, the kingdom was attacked simultaneously from Syria by the Seljuks and from Egypt by the Fatimids . Baldwin II succeeded in pushing back both opponents. In 1119 the principality of Antioch was attacked, the crusaders were defeated in the battle of Ager Sanguinis ; Despite this severe defeat, Baldwin managed to drive the Seljuks out of the principality in the same year.

In 1123 he was captured again by the Seljuks (from Balak ibn Bahram ) during a border patrol in the county of Edessa , but this time released the following year. In the meantime the Crusaders had besieged and conquered Tire with the help of a Venetian fleet . This aid led to the establishment of trading colonies of the Italian republics , not just Venice, in the kingdom's coastal cities, which were autonomous and free from tax burdens and military obligations.

The first two orders of knights were founded during the reign of Baldwin II . 1118 founded Hugues de Payens in Jerusalem the Templars that Baldwin him, which owes its name to the fact his former palace on the Temple Mount as a headquarters set available. The Order of St. John soon appeared as a military order and the charitable goals that it originally had moved into the background.

In 1125 Baldwin gathered the knights of all crusader states around him and defeated the Seljuks in the battle of Azaz , although their army was much larger. As a result of the battle, the Crusaders succeeded in restoring much of the influence they had lost after the "Ager Sanguinis". Had Antioch and Edessa not started to fight each other after the victory, Baldwin might have succeeded in conquering Aleppo . Instead, Aleppo and Mosul were united under Zengi in 1128 . Baldwin then turned against Damascus , but its conquest failed.

Baldwin II had married Morphia von Melitene in 1101 , the daughter of the Armenian prince Gabriel von Melitene . Baldwin had no sons, but four daughters, Melisende , Alice , Hodierna and Ioveta . He married Melisende in 1129 to Count Fulko V of Anjou ; After Baldwin's death in 1131, Fulko and Melisende ruled together. Alice married Bohemond II of Antioch, Hodierna Raimund II , the count of Tripoli ; Ioveta became abbess of Bethany .

Ancestors of Baldwin II.

Manasses I.,
Count of Rethel
dada Giselbert I. (* around 950; † 990),
Count of Roucy
daughter of Count Wilhelm III. from Poitiers
Milon de Montlhéry (attested in 1034/57) nn Wilhelm von Gometz,
Lord of Gometz
Manasses II,
Count of Rethel
Judith from Roucy Guy I. de Montlhéry (around 1015 - 1095),
lord of Rochefort-en-Yvelines
Hodierne de Gometz (* around 1020; † 1074)
Hugo I († 1118),
Count of Rethel
Mélisende de Montlhéry
Balduin du Bourcq († 1131),
Count of Edessa , then King of Jerusalem

Relatives to Baldwin I.

The question of the relationship between the kings Baldwin I and Baldwin II of Jerusalem has long been debated by historians. It is first mentioned by William of Tire , Chancellor of Jerusalem under Baldwin IV , who called Baldwin II the consanguineus (blood relative) of Baldwin I. Several solutions have been suggested to explain this statement:

  • Mélisende de Montlhéry, wife of Hugo I of Rethel and mother of Baldwin II, was the sister of Eustach II of Boulogne. However, this is definitely not the case, the parents of Baldwin I and Baldwin II are known.
  • Yvette (or Judith), wife of Manasses II von Rethel and mother of Hugo I, was a daughter of Eustach I von Boulogne. It is known, however, that Yvette was a sister of the Eble de Roucy. The fact that a widow of a Count von Roucy married a Count von Boulogne, or vice versa, is not mentioned in contemporary sources.

Alan V. Murray has presented a new hypothesis: the first known Count von Rethel is Manasses I, documented in 1026, great-grandfather of Baldwin II and married to a Dada. This first name is similar to the first name Doda, that of the wife of Gottfried II. Of Lower Lorraine and maternal grandmother of Gottfried von Bouillon and Balduin I. If Doda was the daughter of Manasses and Dada, this would be the relationship between Baldwin I and Balduin II. declare as second cousins:

  1. Manasses I., Count of Rethel ∞ Dada
    1. ? Doda ∞ Gottfried II. The Bearded, Duke of Lower Lorraine
      1. Ida of Lorraine ∞ Eustach II, Count of Boulogne
        1. Balduin I.
        2. Godfrey of Bouillon
    2. Manasses II, Count of Rethel ∞ Judith de Roucy
      1. Hugo I., Count of Rethel ∞ Mélisende de Montlhéry
        1. Baldwin II

Other approaches lead back the genealogy of the two over seven or eight generations in order to find a common ancestor, although it is not clear whether this was still called consanguineus in the early Middle Ages .


  • Alan V. Murray: The crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem. A Dynastic History. 1099-1125 (= Occasional Publications of the Oxford Unit for Prosopographical Research. 4). Linacre College - Unit for Prosopographical Research, Oxford 2000, ISBN 1-900934-03-5 .
  • Sylvia Schein: Baldwin II . In: Lexicon of the Middle Ages (LexMA) . tape 1 . Artemis & Winkler, Munich / Zurich 1980, ISBN 3-7608-8901-8 , Sp. 1366 f .

Web links

Commons : Balduin II (Jerusalem)  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ A b Wilhelm von Tire: Historia rerum in partibus transmarinis gestarum. Book 1, chapter 17
  2. Laurentii Gesta Episcoporum Virdunensium 12 , MGH SS X, p. 498
  3. see Murray: The crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem. 2000, p. 20.
predecessor government office successor
Balduin I. Count of Edessa
Joscelin I.
Balduin I. King of Jerusalem
(with Melisende )