Smbat Sparapet's

Chronicle




[92] In the year 638 A.E. [1189] the king of the Germans [Frederick Barbarossa] arose with many troops and came to Constantinople. He passed [the city of] Iconium and captured it, and destroyed the forces of Kilij-Arslan. Kilij-Arslan gave him as hostages 30 of his principals and 100,000 dahekans and made friendship with him. The emperor went as far as Selewkia. Since the summer was extremely hot, the king went into the river to bathe but was overwhelmed by the volume of water, for he was an old man. And he drowned there. It is said that in advance of this it had been foretold him that he would die in the water, and for that reason he had undertaken such a lengthy journey by land. Now his son [Frederic de Souabe] went as far as Acre, and after six [g201] months he died there. His troops dispersed and departed.

In the year 640 A.E. [1191] the king of the Franks came to Acre in ships with many troops and besieged [the city]. Since that city belonged to him, Saladin arrived there as well; and he encamped opposite them. The Frankish army dug three trenches (xandak) around them and strongly secured themselves behind iron-tipped plates. Thus did they place the city into dire straits, and the sultan was not able to aid the citizens. At that time the king of the English (E"nklizats') came to Cyprus and took it from the Byzantines, seized Duke Comnenus and brought him to Acre. United, the two monarchs battled valiantly against the sultan and against the citizens. Then the sultan sent to the kings saying: "Take the city for yourselves, but sell the people for their weight in gold and silver." They responded: "We should do that for your honor, but we have sworn before the blessed tomb of Christ that we would put all of them to the sword, and we cannot break our oath." So they took the city and slaughtered 36,000 men, and Saladin fled.

In the year 641 A.E. [1192] there was a severe famine whose bitterness no one could describe in writing. For [the living] were unable to bury such a multitude as had died [g202], and they even envied those who had died earlier. When springtime arrived, [the people] grazed on the grass, like sheep, and fell sick and died from the unsuitable food. In the same year Sultan Kilij-Arslan died in Iconium. Then Saladin began harassing great Antioch in order to take it. Astrologers told him that he would not be able to rule it, so the sultan abandoned the idea. Antioch was troubled by hunger, since food was not entering out of fear of the sultan. The men of the city said to the prince [Bohemond III, 1163-1201]: "Behold, we will die of hunger. What shall we do"? The prince replied: "Wait 15 days for me, and I will give you an answer." Then the prince arose taking five horsemen with him and went to Saladin who was then encamped opposite the city of Acre (Akka). He reached the door of his tent and said to the door keepers: "Tell the sultan that the prince of Antioch is here and wishes to see him." As soon as the sultan heard this, he quickly went before him, led him into the tent by the hand, and respectfully [wanted to] seat him. And [the prince] said: "I have a request to make of you, and will be seated if you grant it." [The sultan] answered: "What you are requesting will be granted. Say what it is." The prince spoke: "I request that you grant me Antioch." The sultan replied: "I grant that. And further, I will give three months' worth of food to you and the city." [Bohemond] made complete friendship [with the sultan] and returned to Antioch, and the city filled up with plentitude and food.

[93] In the year 642 A.E. [1193] when [g203] the prince had returned from Saladin, he plotted with his wife to seize Lewon. [She] said: "Do not work such an iniquitous deed, because he is my son-in-law, and always serves you gladly and assists you in military matters." But [the prince] did not abandon his wicked plans, and sent summoning him. Lewon arose and went to Baghras, and the prince's wife secretly informed him about the plot. Lewon sent to the prince asking him and the princess to come to him at Baghras so that he could honor them and then they could go to Antioch together. They came willingly and Lewon went out before them to honor them and bring them into Baghras. He seized the prince there and had him confined in the citadel at Sis, carefully guarded. In the same year Sultan Saladin sent [an emissary] to Lewon [telling him] to give the country of Cilicia to him, and he himself could go away unharmed. Lewon was frightened and did not know what to do. Placing his faith in God, he said to the emissary who had been sent to him: "Tell the sultan that I have no country to give to you, but that if you come to my country I will give you a double-edged [sword] to swallow, as I did to Rustam, your coreligionist." When the sultan heard this response, he growled like a lion and prepared his forces to come to the country of Cilicia to exterminate the believers in Christ. He came as far as Seaw (Black) River where he became ill and perished. His son, named Malik Zahir (Melik Tahr), sat upon his throne. In the same year on May 16th, the kat'oghikos of the Armenians, lord Grigoris, passed to Christ in the land of Cilicia, and was buried at Drazark. His throne was occupied by the son of his sister, lord Grigoris, who was called Vahram [Grigor V K'aravezh, 1193-1194] [g204] and was still a lad. In the same year [a number of] noble princes died—sons of the sister of the kat'oghikos Het'um, the son-in-law of Lewon and his brother's daughter, Alice, and Het'um's brother, Shahnshah. [94] The uncle and the nephews died in the same year. It was said that Lewon was the cause of their deaths, but only God knows the truth of the matter. When Grigoris became kat'oghikos he did not display the same obedience to everyone as previously when he was under a tutor, rather he ruled the patriarchy in a willful manner, as his mother's brother wished. When the most senior men envied him, they sent to Lewon and said: "He lacks the appropriate wisdom to hold the patriarchate." And they added to this whatever [other charges] against him that they wanted. They did this once, twice, and three times until they inclined Lewon to their will. He sent the archbishop, lord Yohanne's, to the fortress of Horomkla to effect his will. [Yohanne's] went before the kat'oghikos with respect and was glorified as a guest and relation. While they sat at table during mealtime, [Yohanne's] through arrangement with his attendants, had the gates of the fortress closed and a clamor stirred up. The patriarch was terrified and asked lord Yohanne's: "What is this that I hear?" And [Yohanne's] replied: "You have been seized." Arresting him, they put him into confinement, and made matters more secure with guards. When the rumor of this spread about outside the fortress and within, everyone came armed to the citadel to aid their patriarch. For three days they shot off arrows but were unable to accomplish anything, and then they calmed down. Lord Yohanne's took the condemned patriarch [g205] and brought him to Lewon. They temporarily imprisoned him in the fortress of Kopitar. Now the residents of Hromkla were agitated by the unjust condemnation of their patriarch and secretly sent to him to prepare his escape from the the fortress. They had prepared horses and had got the lord of the fortress [to agree] to take him and his throne. However [the kat'oghikos], childishly [mis]interpreting their words, took linen and hanged it out at night to descend from the fortress. The linen [rope] broke and he fell to his death. They took and buried him at Drazark, close to the tomb of his mother's brother. This occurred in the year 643 A.E. [1194].

In the same year they enthroned as patriarch lord Grigoris, called Apirat [Grigor VI Apirat, 1194-1203], a wise and learned man who was the son of a general, the brother of the kat'oghikoi lord Grigori and lord Nerse's. He was quite elderly and had reached old age in goodly stewardship. Now when Lewon had seized the prince, he put him into confinement for some days. When the royal prince Henri [Comte Henri de Champagne] came from Acre he requested him as a favor from Lewon, and [Lewon] granted it to him. They established a covenant of friendship and marriage relations with each other [g206], as Lewon gave Alice, the daughter of his brother Ruben, who previously had been [the wife] of Het'um, Shahe'nshah's brother, in marriage to the senior son of prince Raymond. [This was done] with the provision that should the union produce a male child, he would be Lewon's heir, and that after the death of his father, Raymond, he would be the lord of Antioch. [This was agreed to] by oath and in writing. The prince's son was with Lewon and went about with him, but he died after a while. His wife was pregnant from him and gave birth to an appealing and comely boy. Since Lewon had no son, the child was to be the heir of their patrimony. He had him nurtured with great attention. He was baptized and called Ruben.

[95] In the year 645 A.E. [1196] the Byzantine emperor sent Lewon a noble crown and sought an alliance of friendship with him. [Lewon] received [the crown] with joy.

In the year 646 A.E. [1197] Lewon sent to Constantinople the archbishop lord Nerse's, son of O'shin, and the very noble prince Halkam, brother of Bakuran, his mother's brother. They went and gladly demonstrated to them Lewon's disposition for friendship. Since lord Nerse's was a wise and learned man, adorned with every virtue, the Byzantine sages gathered around him and conversed with him for many days about the [Armenian] confession of faith and appointments of the church. Lord Nerse's brought them to willing acceptance. In that same year there was a deviation concerning [the proper day for commemorating] Easter. In the same year Lewon sent the archbishop of Sis, lord Yohanne's, to Acre about the crown which the king of the Germans had sent to him with the troops which had come there. An archbishop [artswe'sk'n (Archeveque)] [g207] had also come by order of the pope of Rome [Celestine III].

In the month of January in the year 647 A.E. [1198] on the day of the Revelation of the Lord, they anointed Lewon king of the Armenians in obedience to the church of Rome and the emperor of the Germans. And there was great joy among the Armenian people, since they saw their lordship restored and renewed in the person of Lewon, a moral and God-loving king. In the same year lord Nerse's, son of O'shin and brother of Kostand lord of Lambron, died. And now we should briefly narrate some things about the pleasing modern events occurring in the House of the Armenians. For Lewon was a learned, brilliant man with a happy mien and a generous soul toward all, toward the clerics and laity, the poor, the weak, and to those in monasteries and retreats, dispensing his goodly gifts everywhere, celebrating the feasts of Holy Week with great assembly and a costly table. Whenever he learned that a man was found suitable and capable for a particular job, he sent and called him giving his word and when he had been brought [Lewon] recompensed him with generous gifts. All the ranks of the clergy and the honored princes were adorned and comely in this country of Cilicia. Let me record their names, one by one.

[96] Lord Dawit', archbishop of Mamsuestia and head of the blessed congregation of Ark'akaghni.
Lord Grigoris, archbishop of Kapan (Kapnun) and head of Areg [g208].
Lord Yovhane's, archbishop of Sis and head of Drazark.
Lord Minas, archbishop of the holy city of Jerusalem.
Lord Yuse'p', archbishop of Antioch and head of Yisuank'
Lord Kostandin, archbishop of Anazarb and head of Kastaghon.
Lord Vardan, archbishop of Lambron and head of Skewr'a.
Lord Setp'anos, archbishop of Tarsus and head of Mlich.
Lord T'oros, bishop of Selewkia.
Lord Astuatsatur, bishop of Metsk'ar.
Lord Yohane's, bishop of Sanvilank'.
Lord Ge'org, bishop of Andriasank'.
Lord Kostandin, bishop of Yohnank'.
Lord Grigor, bishop of P'ilpposeank'.
Lord Step'anos, bishop of Berdus.
Lord Mxit'ar, bishop of E"nkuzut.

The prince of Baghras, Adam.
The prince of Chker, Hostius (O'stn).
The prince of Hamus, Arewgoyn.
The prince of Sarvandik'ar, Smbat.
The prince of Harun, Lewon.
The prince of Simanay citadel, Siruhi.
The prince of Ane', Henri (Her'i).
The prince of Kutaf, the constable (gundustapl) Aplgharip.
The prince of E"nkuzut, Baudoin (Paghtin).
The prince of T'or'nika, Stefn.
The princes of Berdus, Lewon and Grigor.
The prince of Kanch', Ashot.
The prince of Fo'r'no's, Aplgharip.
The prince of Kapan, Tancred (Tankri) [g209].
The prince of Chanchi, Kostandin.
The prince of Shoghakan, Geoffry (Chof'ri).
The prince of Mazotxach', Simun.
The prince of T'il, Robert (E"r'o'pert).
The prince of T'lsap, T'oros.
The prince of Vaner, Vasil the marshal [(marajaxt) maréchal].
The prince of Bardzrberd, Ge'org.
The prince of Kopitar', Kostandin.
The prince of Mo'lovon, Azhar'os.
The prince of Kuklak, Smbat.
The prince of Lambron, Het'um.
The prince of Lulwa, Shahinshah.
The prince of Paper'o'n, Bakuran.
The prince of Askur'as, Vasak.
The prince of Manash, Het'um.
The prince of Berdak, Mixayl.
The prince of Pr'akana, Tigran.
The prince of Siwil, O'shin.
The prince of Kur'iko's, Simun.
The prince of Selewkia and Punar', Kostants'.
The prince of Sinit and Kovas, R'omanos.
The prince of Ve't and Ve'r'e"sk, Nikefo'r'n.
The prince of Lavzat and Timitupo'lis, Christopher (Xr'so'f'o'n).
The prince of Manio'n, Lamo's, Zher'manik and Anamur', Halkam.
The prince of Norberd and Ko'mar'tas, the sebastius Henri (Her'i).
The prince of Ando'shts and Kupa, Baudoin.
The prince of Maghva and Sik and Palapo'l, Kyr Isaac (Ker'asak).
The prince of Manovghat and Alar, Mixayl.
The princes of Lakr'awen, Kostandin and Nikifo'r'.
The prince of Kalano'no'r'soy, Ayzhutap, the blessed Sop'e' and Naghlo'n, Kyr Vard (Ker'vard).

[97] Now the aforementioned fortresses at one time served King Lewon, but later [g210] they [re]turned to the sultan. After the death of Prince Bohemond, many soldiers came in service to King Lewon as did princes with them. Here are their names: Olivier the Chambellan (Ulive'r Jambr'layn), Roger du Mont (R'o'che'l Tmunt'), Louard (Juart), Thomas Maslebrun (T'umas Male"prun), Bohemond Lair (Bale'n Pudler), Guillaume de l'Isle (Kilam Tlil). With such prudent princes and valiant warriors did [Lewon] press upon the bands of enemies. They greatly harassed the sons of Kilij-Arslan who ruled the House of the Romans, taking fortresses from them and enslaving their country with looting. With the greatest bravery [Lewon] remained armed amidst the enemy, like an invincible hero. He remembered the wicked deeds that the Lambronets'ik' [Het'umids] had commited against the Christians of Cilicia and against the Rubenid clan [for example, that] O'shin, Het'um's father, had become a leader of the Turks and had brought them against Adana, which he captured causing a great slaughter there. It is said that they took 500 virgin girls captive, not to mention countless others. Lewon, in his wisdom, planned to clip their wings, and reduce their insufferable haughtiness. He suggested some appealing ideas to O'shin's son, Het'um, saying: "I want to establish friendly relations with you, and give Phillipa, the daughter of my brother, Ruben, as a wife to your eldest son, O'shin. Het'um accepted this proposal with thanks and gladness. So they made preparations for the wedding in the city of Tarsus, and Het'um arrived at Tarsus with his clan [g211], sons, and entire household. Then King Lewon seized them. He sent and took Lambron without a battle and put Het'um into prison for a while. Subsequently he released him from prison and gave him numerous villages and gifts and accepted him with honor. [Het'um] served him loyally in accordance with his wisdom, for he was a sensible man and extremely literate besides. But once again, after some years, [Lewon] seized him and put him into prison where he donned clerical clothing. The king went to see him in the prison at Vahka and they requested forgiveness for their actions. The king freed him and gave him the blessed congregation of Drazark where he remained until his death. When he became a cleric, he adopted the name Henri (Heghi).

[98] In the year 650 A.E. [1201] Sultan Rukn ad-Din went to the East with many troops and captured the city of T'e'odupo'lis, which is the city of Karin, not by warfare but by friendship. Then, boasting, he went against Mzhnkert and, while he was besieging the fortress militarily, the troops of the Georgians came upon him. They put him to flight, captured Vahram-Shah, lord of Eznka, and returned to their own land laden with booty. The sultan appointed his brother, Tughril-Shah, as lord of the city of Karin. He was a righteous man who maintained friendship with King Lewon throughout his entire life, and he liked Christians. His brother, the sultan, returned to his own place [g212].

In the year 652 A.E. [1203] the kat'oghikos, lord Grigoris, went to king Lewon in Hor'omklay regarding his sister's son, Het'um, who was still in confinement during his second arrest. The king freed him, as we mentioned earlier. After a short while lord Grigoris reposed in Christ and was buried at the blessed congregation of Ark'akaghin. In the same year King Lewon convened an assembly of bishops and established the archbishop of Sis, lord Yohane's, as the kat'oghikos of the Armenians [Hovhannes VI SSets'i, 1203-1221]. He was a wise, learned, and generous man, keeping a kingly table and a humble heart, simple in his person but attentive to spiritual matters. He greatly loved virtuous men and did not permit harm to come to the [Church's] ranks. He was constructive, an improver of the nation, a preparer of what is proper, who also well secured the fortress of Hor'omklay, who removed many church vessels of gold and silver and sent home everyone who came to him in a goodly fashion. He belonged to the Het'umid clan, a son of Kostand, brother of O'shin.

In the year 654 A.E. [1204] Rukn ad-Din died and his son, named Sulaiman-Shah, occupied his place.

[99] In the year 654 A.E. [1205] King Lewon went against the city of Aplastayn, but was unable to take it. And Kilij-Arslan's son, Xosrov-Shah, came from Constantinople and ruled over his patrimony. In this period the kat'oghikos, lord Yohane's, went to King Lewon having heard blameworthy information about [the unfaithfulness] of the lady of Antioch, whom the king [g213] had [as a wife]. [Yohane's] related [these matters] to the king in private. As the king was very emotional, he ordered that many of the woman's relatives be ruined, and he violently struck the woman with his own hands, wanting to slay her on the spot. Kostand, the son of his uncle Vasak, was barely able to escape, half-dead, with his life, and he was sent in fetters to Vahka. King Lewon had a young daughter from her, named Rita, whom King Lewon's mother raised.

Now in the year 655 A.E. [1206] Bohemond, prince of Antioch, died and his one-eyed son, who was the count of Tripoli, occupied his place. King Lewon sent to him and showed him the written document which his father had made with the king concerning the inheritance of his eldest son, which we described earlier. But he did not agree to implement the conditions of the agreement or behave in a just manner. So once again the king sent and [this time] showed the patriarch of Antioch the same document concerning his rights. The patriarch testified to the king's right [in the matter], but the count would not comply. So the patriarch excommunicated him and ordered that the bell not be sounded in Antioch, that mass not be offered, and that the dead not be buried, and [still] he did not consent. After all this, he dared to stretch out his hand to the patriarch. He put him into confinement and afflicted him with hunger and thirst. Then he sent to him, saying: "Testify that by right I am the lord of Antioch, and I shall free you and you shall live." But [the patriarch] totally rejected this to the point that he died in prison of hunger and thirst, but would not speak falsely. Subsequently there was great agitation between the king and the prince [g214].

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