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    M. Nejedlý, J. Svátek (dir.), Histoires et mémoires des croisades (Norman Housley)

    Francia-Recensio 2016/3 Mittelalter – Moyen Âge (500–1500)

    Martin Nejedlý, Jaroslav Svátek (dir.), Histoires et mémoires des croisades à la fin du Moyen Âge, Toulouse (Presses universitaires du Midi) 2015, 313 p. (Croisades tardives, 3), ISBN 978-2-8107-0377-7, EUR 23,00.

    rezensiert von/compte rendu rédigé par

    Norman Housley, Leicester

    The investigation of memory – its creation, evolution and manipulation – is one of the most popular research questions currently occupying the minds of historians. The theme is proving particularly fruitful in the field of crusading studies, in part because crusading as an activity persisted for so long and in part because it entailed such a complex interweaving of political goals, military endeavour and devotional practices. Rarely did it prove easy to explain what had happened on any crusade, nor was the motivation of those fashioning the memory straightforward. The recording process was shaped by countless impulses ranging from apologia to hagiography or propaganda. Not least among the recurrent goals impelling the literate to narrate and explain what had taken place was the hope of incentivising their contemporaries to respond to future calls to take the cross. Those who assumed the burden of constructing the crusading past were often thinking primarily about crusading present and future.

    It is not surprising that to date crusading memory has been analysed largely with regard to crusades to the Latin East in the »classical period« of crusading activity (i. e. the twelfth and thirteenth centuries). Indeed, the emphasis has been squarely on the First Crusade, whose character and sources both offer numerous fascinating questions. The volume under review constitutes one of the first attempts to apply the research agenda about memory to the later crusades (usually taken to mean those occurring or planned after 1291). It is the third volume in what is shaping up as one of the most significant series about crusading, the offspring of Daniel Baloup’s ambitious and wide-ranging research programme on »les croisades tardives«. The collection is capably introduced by its editors and magisterially summed up by Jean Richard, who is one of the few historians of crusading to write with equal authority about the »classical«and later periods.

    The contents of this collection are eclectic, because that was the nature of crusading after 1291, as generation after generation tried to adapt what they had inherited to the radically evolving geo-political situation on Christendom’s borders and the equally fundamental changes taking place within the Catholic world. There was no central repository of crusading memory: on the contrary, attempts were made in numerous different quarters, and for very different reasons, to stake a claim on its enduring cultural capital. The authors of the twelve essays in the collection approach this substantial and challenging agenda from two directions. In the first place, there are essays which examine what could be called local or regional perspectives on crusading. The most substantial is Franco Cardini’s contribution on the crusade in fifteenth-century Florence. Cardini was a pioneer in the field of regional crusading traditions and memory; as long ago as the early 1980s he was publishing on the Tuscan and specifically the Florentine view of the crusading past. In this treatment of the subject he sets fifteenth-century developments within a perspective going back to the 1200s. As one would expect, the view from the Czech lands – described by Maria Bláhová – was very different; even more so that in Cilician Armenia, outlined by Gérard Dédéyan. As one would expect, Dédéyan gives much attention to the famous Hayton of Corykos, whose »Fleurs des histoires d’Orient«possessed the dual function of history and advice. Regional perspectives were complemented by dynastic ones, and the latter are represented in this volume by Václav Žůrek’s study of the sources for the crusading zeal evinced by John of Luxembourg and his son Charles, who as Holy Roman Emperor was expected ex officio to display interest in the crusade.

    The larger cluster of essays concentrates on individual texts or genres. Some of the texts are well-known. Jaroslav Svátek takes a fresh look at Bertrandron de la Broquière’s renowned report on his reconnaissance mission to the eastern Mediterranean in 1432–1433, concluding that his generous treatment of Turkish domestic mores reflected not declining interest in crusade but de la Broquière’s resolve to submit a report to Duke Philip the Good that would be as comprehensive and objective as possible. Rafael Beltrán offers his thoughts on the crusading themes in Joanot Martorell’s romance »Tirant lo Blanc«, one of the most distinctive literary treatments of the Turkish threat to Constantinople. A similar text, Jean d’Arras’s »Melusine«, is reviewed by Martin Nejedlý in terms of its remarkable popularity in the Czech lands. Literary treatment of the figure of Saladin had always been particularly complex, and Catherine Gaullier-Bougassas demonstrates that this continued to be true in the fifteenth century, when the »Roman de Saladin« was written. Philippe Josserand considers the way the image of a thirteenth-century master of the Order of Santiago, Pelayo Pérez Correa, was secularised in fifteenth-century Castile. Emmanuelle Pujeau reviews the substantial body of verse dedicated to recounting the story of the struggle against the Turks in the sixteenth century.

    One of the most intriguing texts actually written as history was Sébastien Mamerot’s »Passages d’outremer« of 1472–1474, an account of French crusading exploits from Charlemagne right up to the fifteenth century. Mamerot’s work was a strikingly early attempt to encompass the entire span of crusading history. The text, which was last published in 1514, requires an up to date edition, but in the meantime Danielle Quéruel provides a serviceable account of its major research questions. The manuscript of »Passages d’outremer«held by the Bibliothèque nationale contains sixty-four superb miniatures by Jean Colombe, making it as much a luxury artwork as a historical product, and this serves as a reminder that some key sources for the fifteenth-century perception of crusading were visual ones. They include the paintings of Carpaccio, and the crusading resonances in a number of his works are analysed by Bernard Doumerc.

    In summary, this collection holds much of interest not just for historians of the later crusades but also for anybody interested in the formation and transmission of the memory of the earlier expeditions, alongside continuing aspirations to follow in the hallowed footsteps of Godfrey of Bouillon, Richard Cœur de Lion and Saint Louis.

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    PSJ Metadata
    Norman Housley
    Histoires et mémoires des croisades à la fin du Moyen Âge
    CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0
    Spätes Mittelalter (1350-1500)
    Alte Welt
    Geschichte allgemein, Kirchen- und Religionsgeschichte
    Kreuzzüge (4073802-4), Geschichtsschreibung (4020531-9), Kollektives Gedächtnis (4200793-8)
    PDF document nejedly_hously.doc.pdf — PDF document, 328 KB
    M. Nejedlý, J. Svátek (dir.), Histoires et mémoires des croisades (Norman Housley)
    In: Francia-Recensio 2016/3 | Mittelalter – Moyen Âge (500–1500) | ISSN: 2425-3510
    URL: https://prae.perspectivia.net/publikationen/francia/francia-recensio/2016-3/ma/nejedly_hously
    Veröffentlicht am: 20.09.2016 12:20
    Zugriff vom: 30.11.2020 03:47
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