Cardiff Centre for the Crusades
The Cardiff Centre for the Crusades was established in 2000 to encourage and develop Cardiff as a focus for research collaboration, conferences and publications in the field of crusading history. The Director of the Centre is Professor Peter Edbury.
The Centre’s interests embrace the history and ideology of the crusading movement, the history and archaeology of the lands conquered by the crusaders, the impact of the crusades on those lands and peoples against which expeditions were directed and from which expeditions were launched, and the history of the Military Orders. All theatres of crusading activity and any crusade from the end of the eleventh century onwards are included.
Professor Edbury is a specialist on the history and institutions of the Latin East and Cyprus between the twelfth and fourteenth centuries and on Latin Syrian legal literature. He has re-edited the two greatest legal treatises from the Latin East, those by John of Ibelin count of Jaffa (Brill 2003) and Philip of Novara (Cyprus Research Centre2009). Other publications include: Kingdoms of the Crusaders: From Jerusalem to Cyprus (Ashgate, 1999); John of Ibelin and Kingdom of Jerusalem (Boydell, 1997); The Conquest of Jerusalem and the Third Crusade (Scolar, 1996); The Kingdom of Cyprus and the Crusades, 1191-1374 (Cambridge, 1991); and, jointly with the late Professor J.G. Rowe of the University of Western Ontario, William of Tyre: Historian of the Latin East (Cambridge, 1988).
Dr Nicholson (Reader in Medieval History) is a historian of the Military Orders and the Crusades, and the depiction of the Military Orders in literary sources. Among her publications are The Proceedings Against the Templars in the British Isles, 2 vols (Ashgate, 2011), The Knights Hospitaller (Boydell, 2001); The Knights Templar: a New History (Sutton, 2001); Love, War and the Grail: Templars, Hospitallers and Teutonic Knights in medieval epic and romance, c.1150-1500 (Brill, 2000); and Chronicles of the Third Crusade (Ashgate, 1997). She is also the editor or co-editor of several volumes of research papers, including The Military Orders: Welfare and Warfare (Ashgate, 1998); Palgrave Advances in the Crusades (Palgrave Macmillan, 2005), and (with Jochen Burgtorf and Paul F. Crawford) The Debate on the Trial of the Templars (1307–1314) (Ashgate Publishing, 2010).
Professor Pringle (Professor in Archaeology) is the leading authority on the archaeology, architecture and topography of the Crusader States in the Levant. Among his numerous publications are The Churches of the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem: A Corpus, 4 vols. (Cambridge, 1993–2009); Pilgrimage to Jerusalem and the Holy Land, 1187-1291 (Ashgate, 2012); Fortification and Settlement in Crusader Palestine (Ashgate, 2000); Secular Buildings in the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem (Cambridge, 1997); The Red Tower: Settlement in the Plain of Sharon at the Time of the Crusaders and Mamluks (British School of Archaeology in Jerusalem, 1986); Churches, Castles and Landscape in the Frankish East (Ashgate, forthcoming); and, with Richard Harper, Belmont Castle: the Excavation of a Crusader Stronghold in the Kingdom of Jerusalem (Oxford, 2000). He is also an associate editor of the journal Levant and archaeology editor of Crusades.
Major Research Projects currently in hand by members of the Centre include the Walls of Medieval Ascalon project, directed by Denys Pringle in association with the Leon Levy Expedition to Ashkelon (University of Harvard) and the Council for British Research in the Levant, and also involving Frances Healy.
Peter Edbury is currently leading an AHRC-funded project to investigate the manuscript traditions and produce new editions of the Old French Continuations of William of Tyre and the related text known as La chronique d’Ernoul et de Bernard le Trésorier. These narratives are fundamental for our understanding of the history of the Latin East in the late thwelfth and thirteenth centuries. For further details see the project web page. His other major project (in collaboration with Dr N.S. Coureas of the Cyprus Research Centre, Nicosia) is to produce an English translation with commentary of the so-called Chronique d’Amadi.
Helen Nicholson has recently completed a complete edition of the Templar trial proceedings in the British Isles, 1308-1311 and is currently working on the Knights Templars’ estates in England and Wales during the period 1308–1313, when the estates were administered by royal officials. She is in the process of transcribing and analysing the records held in the National Archives: Public Record Office at Kew.
Denys Pringle is preparing a new edition of Wilbrand of Oldenberg’s account of his journey through Syria, Cilicia, Cyprus and Palestine in 1217-18, as well as the final report on the archaeological assessment of ‘Aqaba Castle that he conducted with the later Professor John De Meulemeester in 2001–4. He is also currently editing a volume of historical, archaeological and architectural studies on the Palestinian town of Ramla in the medieval and Ottoman periods with Andrew Petersen (University of Wales Trinity St Davids).
Conferences and Workshops
In September 2009 the Cardiff Centrer for the Crusades hosted the highly successful fifth international conference of the Society for the Study of the Crusades and the Latin East on the Military Orders. Almost 100 people attended, molstly from Europe and North America. Thirty-eight of the papers, edited by Peter Edbury, were published by Ashgate in 2012.