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An Arab-Syrian Gentleman and Warrior in the Period of the Crusades: Memoirs of Usamah Ibn-Munqidh
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An Arab-Syrian Gentleman and Warrior in the Period of the Crusades: Memoirs of Usamah Ibn-Munqidh

3.96 of 5 stars 3.96  ·  rating details  ·  53 ratings  ·  4 reviews
The life of Us?mah ibn-Munqidh epitomized the height of Arab civilization as it flourished in the period of the early Crusades. His memoirs present an uncommon non-European perspective and understanding of the military and cultural contact between East and West, Muslim and Christian. His writing is remarkable for its narrative clarity, its humanity, and its wealth of perce ...more
Paperback, 265 pages
Published June 22nd 2000 by Columbia University Press (first published January 1st 1183)
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Man, this was cool! Since it was written in the late 1100s, I was expecting it to be pretty difficult, but it think it helps that this is a modern translation, and also by the fact that, other than one section that is a eulogy, it was apparently written in a fairly casual style. I found it really interesting. A lot of it is details of battles with the Franks, or battles with lions or other wild animals, and sometimes that got a little old, although at times it was pretty entertaining. There is a ...more
Kaushik Iyer
Primarily rated for the clarity of translation and of presentation.

This is a fascinating book for anyone interested in Arab history. Usamah Ibn-Munqidh's Kitab al-I'tibar shows us a little about courtier life in the 12th century. There are sections that are gripping, parts that ramble, and others that are markedly ordinary, but it feels of its time in a way that's compelling.
Mark Blackham
I give this a lower rating only because it is a turgid read. Apart from that, the book is an invaluable resource for those wishing to get a first-hand view into the medieval Arab perspective, not just about war but also social life, religion, hunting, poetry and more. This book was written after the Second Crusade (circa 1160) by Usamah Ibn-Munqidh who came from the stronghold of Shayzar in Syria. He was a warrior, traveler, a bit of an anthropologist - and a gentleman as he likes to say. The bo ...more
Travis Hull
A memoir written by someone on the other side of the Crusades. These memoirs of a Syrian royal provide an interesting picture of life between the first and second Crusade and how the Arab kingdoms in the area lived. It is one of the best sources for how the Arabs regarded the invaders, both in peace and in war. Not only of interest to historians, this book can be read and appreciated by anyone wanting to know more about the Crusades.
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The Book of Contemplation: Islam and the Crusades Kitāb al-ʻaṣā Des Enseignements De La Vie =: Kitab Al Itibar:  Souvenirs D'un Gentilhomme Syrien Du Temps Des Croisades (Collection Orientale De L'imprimerie Nationale) (French Edition) Ousama, Un prince syrien face aux croisés

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