Humphrey IV of Toron

From Academic Kids

Humphrey IV of Toron (c. 1166 – c. 1192) was the lord of Toron, Kerak, and Oultrejordain in the crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem.

He was the son of Humphrey III of Toron and Stephanie of Milly, heiress of Oultrejourdain, and grandson of Humphrey II, former constable of Jerusalem. He was also a stepson of Stephanie's second and third husbands Miles of Plancy and Raynald of Chatillon. Humphrey's sister Isabella was married to Rupen III of Armenia. The lords of Toron were one of the original crusader families and were supporters of the baronial faction, as opposed to the new crusader princes who tended to come from Europe to fight and marry into the royal family. Humphrey IV became lord of Toron when his grandfather Humphrey II died in 1179.

In 1180 he became betrothed to Isabella of Jerusalem, daughter of Amalric I, under the agreement that Toron would become a royal territory. In November of 1183 the teenage Humphrey and the eleven-year-old Isabella were married in the fortress of Kerak (the seat of the lordship of Oultrejourdain), which was besieged by Saladin shortly afterwards. Humphrey's mother convinced Saladin not to direct his attack against the tower in which the newly married young couple lived, although he continued to besiege the rest of the fortress; Kerak was eventually relieved by King Baldwin IV.

In 1186, when Baldwin V died, Baldwin's stepfather Raynald tried to convince Humphrey to claim the throne in right of his wife, whom Dowager Queen Maria and the Ibelin faction wanted to crown as soon as possible. However, Humphrey, not known to be ambitious or confrontational, but described as soft and even effeminate, did not think himself fit for the crown. He instead chose to support Guy of Lusignan, husband of Isabella's half-sister Sibylla, to whom Humphrey swore fealty. Raynald and the other nobles followed his support, as did the Ibelin faction, even though Guy had only recently arrived in Outremer.

Guy proved to be an ineffective king, and Saladin invaded the kingdom in 1187. Humphrey was captured at the Battle of Hattin that year, but was released and returned to Kerak to prepare for its defense. He was captured again when Kerak fell in 1189, but was again set free.

The barons of Jerusalem had only begrudgingly accepted Guy as king because of the lack of a rival candidate (due to Humphrey's diffidence), and after the fall of Jerusalem they turned against him. During the Third Crusade in 1190 the Archbishop of Pisa and the Bishop of Beauvais annulled Humphrey's marriage to Isabella, based on the argument that she had married Humphrey when underage and had been coerced by the will of her half-brother King Baldwin IV. The annullment was to the favour of the newcomer Conrad of Montferrat, who wanted to marry her in order to claim the throne. Humphrey and Isabella were a devoted couple and she did not want to divorce, as she preferred Humphrey to the middle-aged Conrad, but Humphrey did not want to cause any conflict with the other barons. Humphrey was also intimidated by Guy of Senlis, a French noble, who challenged him to combat (Humphrey refused). Conrad then married Isabella himself (although he had already married twice and it was possible that at least one of those wives was still alive at that time), and claimed the throne of Jerusalem through her, with the support of the Ibelins and other barons.

Humphrey soon allied himself with Richard Lionheart, first in the capture of Cyprus and then against Saladin. As Humphrey was fluent in Arabic, he was able to negotiate with Saladin on Richard's behalf. In 1192, when Conrad was assassinated by the Hashshashin, Humphrey, along with Richard and various others, were suspected of involvement, although this is unlikely. Isabella was then married off to Henry II of Champagne, over the protests of Humphrey, who argued that the annullment of their marriage was invalid and that Conrad had been bigamous.

Humphrey probably died soon after this, and the lordship of Toron was claimed by his sister Isabella (married to Rupen of Armenia) and her issue, rex iunior of Armenia prince of Antioch, and eventually the claim to the lordship was inherited by the Montfort family, lords of Toron and Tyre.Template:Lived de:Humfried IV. von Toron fr:Onfroy IV de Toron


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