Are There Rules in War?

On the Importance of War Booty for the Teutonic Knights in the Thirteenth-Century Holy Land

In: East Central Europe
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  • 1 Central European University, Budapest – Vienna, Hungary – Austria; Eötvös Loránd University

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This article summarizes new research on the custom of distributing the spoils of war amongst active military participants in the Holy Land. A letter of guarantee records an agreement between John of Brienne, king of Jerusalem, and the Teutonic Knights right after the capture of Damietta (1219) during the Fifth Crusade. This document is compared with contemporary sources reporting on military actions of the Teutonic Order. The article argues that the strength of a military order and power relations between parties participating in military campaigns can be studied through their sharing of the spoils of war.

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