Chronicles of the Crusades

Chronicles of the Crusades

Written by: Jean de Joinville
Written by: Geffroy de Villehardouin
Introduction by: Margaret R. B. Shaw
Translated by: Margaret R. B. Shaw

Additional Formats
  • Paperback
  • ISBN 9780140441246
  • 368 Pages
  • Penguin Classics
  • Adult


Two famous, firsthand accounts of the holy war in the Middle Ages translated by Margaret R. B. Shaw

Originally composed in Old French, the two chronicles brought together here offer some of the most vivid and reliable accounts of the Crusades from a Western perspective. Villehardouin’s Conquest of Constantinople, distinguished by its simplicity and lucidity, recounts the controversial Fourth Crusade, which descended into an all-out attack on the E astern Christians of Byzantium. In Life of Saint Louis, Joinville draws on his close attachment to King Louis IX of France to recall his campaigning in the Holy Land. Together these narratives comprise a fascinating window on events that, for all their remoteness, offer startling similarities to our own age.

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

Table of Contents

Villehardouin: The Conquest of Constantinople1. Muster-Roll of the Fourth Crusade
2. Treaty with the Venetians
3. The Army Seeks a Leader
4. Delays and Disappointments
5. Siege of Zara
6. Discord in the Army
7. Voyage to Scutari
8. Preparations for an Assault
9. First Siege of Constantinople
10. The Emperor’s Covenant
11. Appeal to Arms
12. Second Siege to Constantinople
13. Election of an Emperor
14. A Case of Strained Relations
15. War against the Greeks
16. Siege of Adrianople
17. A Regency Established
18. King Johanitza Ravages the Empire
19. Offensive and Counter-Offensive
20. War on Two Fronts
21. Excursions Outside the EmpireJoinville: The Life of Saint LouisIntroduction
Part One
1. The Servant of God
2. The Servant of His People
Part Two
1. Turbulence of Barons
2. Preparations for a Crusade
3. Voyage to Cyprus
4. Landing in Egypt
5. Occupation of Damietta
6. Operations on the Nile
7. The Battle of Mansourah
8. Victory and its Aftermath
9. The French in Captivity
10. Negotiations with the Saracens
11. The King in Acre
12. The Old Man of the Mountain
13. The Tartars
14. Life in Caesarea
15. Expedition to Jaffa
16. Expedition to Saida
17. Return to France
18. The King’s Administration of his Realm
19. A Fatal Crusade
20. Canonization of Saint Louis
Notes on the Translation