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Crusades / States /
Antioch, Norman Principality of

Coin issued by Tancred of Antioch, early 12th century.
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Coin issued by Tancred of Antioch, early 12th century.

Bohemond 1 1099-1111
As regent for Bohemond 1, and then shortly for Bohemond 2
Bohemond 2 1111-1130
Roger of Salerno
As regent for Bohemond 2
Baldwin 2 of Jerusalem
As regent for Bohemond 2
Princess Constance 1130-1164
Raymond of Poitiers 1136-1149
Raynald of Chatillon 1153-1160
Bohemond 3 the Stammerer 1163-1201
Behemond 4 the One-Eyed
Returned to power in 1219
Raymond-Roupen 1216-1219
Bohemond 4 the One-Eyed 1219-1233
Bohemond 5 1233-1252
Bohemond 6 1252-1275
Bohemond 7 1275-1287

One of 4 Christian Crusader states in the Middle East. It lasted 1099-1287, 188 years, in an area that stretched into Cilicia in the north, bordering Edessa and Aleppo, going far south into Syria.
The centre of the principality was Antioch (modern Antakya, Turkey), which predominantly had a Christian population.
Antioch was the leading commercial centre of the Latin East, central in trade both with Christians and Muslims. Spices, dyes, silk and porcelain were transported by caravans from far east in Asia to be shipped to Europe. Local produce were lemons and olive oil, and through Antioch cedar wood from Lebanon was sold to Egypt.
The principality was thinly populated, and most probably it had less than 100,000 inhabitants. Most were Christians; Armenians, Greek Orthodox and a few Roman Catholics. It appears likely that there also was a Muslim minority.
Antioch was a fragile state, and many of its rulers died in battle. As heirs were young, successions often caused disputes and internal struggle. Was it not for the intervention of the king of Jerusalem on many occasions, Antioch could easily have disintegrated.
For general treatment on the organizational structure and economy of Crusader states, see Christian Crusader states.

1097 October: Besiege is laid on Antioch by the main troops of the Crusader army.
1098 June 3: Antioch, being an extremely well fortified city, is conquered. The story goes that a former Christian and a guardsman let the Crusaders into the city. A wide-scale massacre was launched on the Muslim inhabitants.
June 7: A Muslim army, led by Kerbogha, arrives at the gates of Antioch. Again, the story goes that the Christian troops found great motivation from a claimed relic found in Antioch, the Holy Lance, the one that had pierced Jesus Christ's side on the cross. Kerbogha is told to have been miraculously defeated by the Christian troops, who were aided by an army of saints.
Around 1099: Christian leaders have difficulties finding who should govern Antioch, until making Prince Bohemond ruler, but without any formal title, like duke or count.
— An unknown epidemic spreads throughout the Crusader camp.
1100: Bohemond is captured in battle with the Turkomen Danishmends of eastern Anatolia, and his nephew Tancred became regent.
— Tancred expanded the borders of the Principality, taking the cities of Tarsus and Latakia from the Byzantine Empire.
1103: Bohemond is released, but Tancred remains regent.
1104: Tancred becomes regent of Edessa after Count Baldwin 1 is captured by Muslim troops.
1107: Bohemond attacks the Byzantines.
1111: Bohemond dies, is succeeded by Bohemond 2. Tancred remains regent.
1112: Tancred dies, and Roger of Salerno succeeds as regent.
1119: Roger dies, and Antioch becomes a vassal state of Jerusalem.
1136: Raymond of Poitiers becomes effective ruler of Antioch, following his marriage with 10-year old Constance, the daughter of Bohemund 2.
1144: Edessa falls to the Zangid ruler, Nureddin, and an attack on Antioch is launched. Much of Antioch's eastern territory is lost.
1149: Raymond is killed in battle, and Baldwin 3 of Jerusalem becomes effective regent of Antioch.
1153: Constance marries Raynald of Chatillon.
1159: Antioch is forced to become a vassal under the Byzantine Empire. This effectively came to protect Antioch against further advances by the Zengids.
1163: Bohemond 3, son of Constance, is made new ruler of Antioch.
1164: Bohemond is captured by Nureddin, but released the following year. Orontes River is made new border of Antioch and the Zengids.
1180: Byzantine Emperor, Manuel, dies, and Antioch regains its independence. But it also lost its vital military alliance.
1187: Bohemond 3 makes an agreement with the Muslim leader, Saladin. The background was Saladin's great victories over Jerusalem.
1201: Bohemond dies, causing a power struggle, from which Bohemond 4 emerged as the ruler, but not of a stable state.
1254: Tensions between Armenia and Antioch ends with the marriage of Bohemond 5 and the Armenian princess, Sibylla. In reality, this made Antioch a vassal state under Armenia.
1250's: Mongols advances into the Middle East, getting effective support from both Antioch and Armenia.
1260: The Mamluks, getting the upper hand in their struggle with the Mongols, send warnings to Antioch.
1268: The city of Antioch surrenders to the Mamluk Sultan, Baybars 1, the ruler of Egypt and Syria. The principality would survive another 19 years, but only in a very small territory.

By Tore Kjeilen