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“La roine preude femme et bonne dame”: Queen Sybil of Jerusalem (1186–1190) in History and Legend, 1186–1300

Nicholson, Helen Jane 2006. “La roine preude femme et bonne dame”: Queen Sybil of Jerusalem (1186–1190) in History and Legend, 1186–1300. The Haskins Society Journal 15

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Queen Sybil (or Sibyl) of Jerusalem, queen in her own right, married a man who was thoroughly hated by some of her most powerful and influential nobles, lost her kingdom to the Muslim ruler Saladin, and died in a siege camp with her children, leaving her husband without a claim to the throne. In terms of rulership, her reign was a disaster. However, the thirteenth-century description of her that forms the title of this article makes no allusion to these military failures. According to this description, Sybil was a noble-minded woman or wife (as femme can mean either) and a good (married) lady of authority. This article considers the dichotomy between the events of Sybil’s reign and this reputation assigned to her after her death. It argues that although her post-mortem reputation was based on actual events, it was so distorted by contemporary gender ideals that it is impossible for modern scholars to re-construct the real Sybil.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: History, Archaeology and Religion
Subjects: D History General and Old World > D History (General) > D111 Medieval History
P Language and Literature > PQ Romance literatures
Uncontrolled Keywords: crusader kingdom of Jerusalem, Sybilla, Sibylla. Sibyl, Sybil, Third Crusade, Guy of Lusignan, Minstrel of Reims, crusades, Saladin
Additional Information: Although issue 15 was the issue for 2004, this issue was published in 2006.
Publisher: Boydell Press
ISSN: 0963-4959
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 08:20

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