While “the crusades” have become a synonym for brutality and bigotry, the crusader states represented a positive example of harmonious coexistence between Muslims, Jews, and Christians. Likewise, while scholars from a wide range of disciplines including archaeology, art history, and medicine have shed light on diverse aspects of the crusader states, to date there is no single introductory source that provides a comprehensive overview of these unique states as a starting point for the uninitiated.
Beyond the Seas: The Story of the Crusader States by Helena P. Schrader aims to fill this gap while correcting common misconceptions. It will bring together recent scholarly research on a range of topics to create a comprehensive description. It will cover the history, demography, state institutions, foreign policy, economy, art, architecture, and lifestyle of the people who lived in the crusader states in the period from 1100 to 1300. It will be organized topically rather than chronologically, although the introductory chapter will provide an historical overview. An additional chapter on the rise and fall of the House of Ibelin gives the entire history a human face, while a collection of short biographical sketches of key figures will also be provided as an appendix.
Beyond the Seas: The Story of the Crusader States is currently being researched and drafted. It will be released by a renowned U.K. publisher in 2021.