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Prof Denys Pringle 


Denys Pringle (2012) Pilgrimage to Jerusalem and the Holy Land, 1187-1291. Crusade Texts in Translation, vol. 23. Ashgate: Farnham 2012.

Abstract -This book presents new translations of a selection of Latin and French pilgrimage texts, and one in Greek, relating to Jerusalem and the Holy Land between the fall of Jerusalem to Saladin in 1187 and the loss of Acre to the Mamluks in 1291. Such texts provide information not only about pilgrimage itself, but also on church history, topography, architecture and the social and economic conditions in Palestine in this period. The translations are accompanied by explanatory footnotes and preceded by an introduction, which discusses the development of Holy Land pilgrimage in this period and the context, dating and composition of the texts themselves.

Contents: Preface; Introduction; The Texts: Wilbrand of Oldenburg: Journey to the Holy Land (1211–12); Thietmar: Ppilgrimage (1217–18); Ernoul’s Chronicle (c.1231) (extracts); The Holy pilgrimages (1229– 39); Anonymous IX and Anonymous X (c.1229–39); All the land that the Sultan retains (c.1239); Geoffrey of Beaulieu: The pilgrimage of Louis IX from Acre to Nazareth (March 1251); Greek anonymous I: A partial account of the Holy Places of Jerusalem (1253–54); Matthew Paris: Itinerary from London to Jerusalem (1250–59); The ways and pilgrimages of the Holy Land (1244–65); Pilgrimages and pardons of Acre (1258–63); Friar Maurice OFM: Journey to the Holy Land (1271–73); Burchard of Mount Sion OP: Description of the Holy Land (1274–85); Philip of Savona OFM: Description of the Holy Land (1285–89); Riccoldo of Monte Croce OP: Pilgrimage (1288–89); These are the pilgrimages and places of the Holy Land (13th century); Greek anonymous II: The places of Jerusalem (c.1250–c.1350); Sources; Index.

Please visit the Ashgate webpage for further details about this book.


Denys Pringle (2013) Churches, Castles and Landscape in the Frankish East. Variorum Collected Studies, Ashgate: Farham–Burlington VT.

Abstract - The sixteen studies brought together in this book are the product of the many years that Denys Pringle has spent investigating the material evidence for Latin settlement in Syria and Palestine in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Focusing on the building remains of churches and castles – and their relationship to the landscape – the themes that it explores include: the influence that such factors as existing local architectural traditions and the need to accommodate visiting pilgrims may have had on the design of Latin churches and religious houses; the architecture of the Cistercian houses in the kingdom of Jerusalem; the insights that the geographical distribution of church buildings gives into the extent of Christian settlement in the 12th and 13th centuries; the development and geographical extent of estates and lordships, including the lordship of Mirabel; the functions of castles in peace and war and the perception of their role by contemporaries; the design and purpose of castle chapels and the role of their chaplains; the evidence for Armenian inhabitants in the castle of Sahyun; and the identification of the spring of the Cresson that features in accounts of the military campaigns of 1187.  

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Please visit the Ashgate webpage for further details about this book.


Denys Pringle (2008) An Expatriate Community in Tunis, 1648–1885: St George’s Protestant Cemetery and its Inscriptions. Cardiff Studies in Archaeology/BAR International Series, vol. 1811: Oxford 2008.

Abstract - A piece of ground outside the Carthage Gate in which English and other Protestants who died in Tunis might be buried was granted to the British consul in the 1640s. It continued to be used for that purpose until 1885, when a new municipal cemetery opened. In 1890, an Anglican church was built over part of the cemetery and the tombstones lying in its way were saved and arranged around the walls. Altogether some 115 tomb texts survive from 1648 to 1885. They relate to mariners, merchants, consuls and their families, and later to missionaries, engineers and railway personnel. The deceased came not only from Britain but also from Scandinavia, France, Italy, Holland and the United States. From 1860 onwards the epigraphic information is supplemented by the church registers. This monograph contains a complete edition of the tomb inscriptions, accompanied by commentaries and a historical introduction.


Denys Pringle (2009) The Churches of the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem: A Corpus, vol. 4. The Cities of Acre and Tyre, together with Addenda and Corrigenda to Vols. 1–3. Cambridge University Press; Cambridge 2009.

Abstract - This is the fourth and final volume of a series which is intended to present a complete Corpus of all the church buildings, of both the Western and the Oriental rites, built, rebuilt or simply in use in the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem between the capture of Jerusalem by the First Crusade in 1099 and the loss of Acre in 1291. The first two volumes covered in alphabetical order all the cities, towns, villages, lesser rural settlements and monasteries of the Kingdom, with the exception of the three major cities of Jerusalem, Acre and Tyre. Volume three dealt exclusively with Jerusalem, the capital of the Kingdom from 1099 to 1187. The present volume covers the churches of Acre and Tyre, and also includes corrigenda and addenda to the preceding volumes.

The project of which this series represents the final, definitive publication has been sponsored since 1979 by the British School of Archaeology in Jerusalem (now the Council for British Research in the Levant). The now completed Corpus aims to comprise a topographical listing of all of the nearly 500 church buildings of the Kingdom that are attested by documentary or surviving evidence, and individual descriptions and discussion of them in terms of their identification, building history and architecture. Some of the buildings have already been published before, while many others are published here for the first time. A feature of the Corpus, however, is the standardized format in which the evidence for each building is presented: this also extends to the plans and elevations, based for the most part on new field surveys, which are drawn to a uniform style and (so far as is practicable) scale. The Corpus will therefore be an indispensable work of reference to all those concerned with the medieval topography and archaeology of the Holy Land, with the history of the church in the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem, and with the architecture of the Latin East.


Denys Pringle (2007) The Churches of the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem: A Corpus, vol. 3. The City of Jerusalem. Cambridge University Press; Cambridge.

Abstract - This is the third of a series of four volumes which are intended to present a complete Corpus of all the church buildings, of both the Western and the Oriental rites, built, rebuilt or simply in use in the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem between the capture of Jerusalem by the First Crusade in 1099 and the loss of Acre in 1291. The first two volumes have covered in alphabetical order all the cities, towns, villages, lesser rural settlements and monasteries of the Kingdom, with the exception of the three major cities of Jerusalem, Acre and Tyre. This volume deals exclusively with Jerusalem, the capital of the Kingdom from 1099 to 1187, leaving the churches of Acre and Tyre to be covered in the fourth and final volume.

The project of which this series represents the final, definitive publication has been sponsored since 1979 by the British School of Archaeology in Jerusalem (now the Council for British Research in the Levant). When complete the Corpus will contain a topographical listing of all the 500 or so church buildings of the Kingdom that are attested by documentary or surviving evidence, and individual descriptions and discussion of them in terms of their identification, building history and architecture. Some of the buildings have already been published before, while many others are published here for the first time. A feature of the Corpus, however, is the standardized format in which the evidence for each building is presented: this also extends to the plans and elevations, based for the most part on new field surveys, which are drawn to a uniform style and (so far as is practicable) scale. The Corpus will therefore be an indispensable work of reference to all those concerned with the medieval topography and archaeology of the Holy Land, with the history of the church in the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem, and with the architecture of the Latin East.


Denys Pringle (2006) ‘There is a castle in the west …’: Dundonald Castle Excavations 1986–93. Scottish Archaeological Journal, 26.1-2. Edinburgh University Press, Edinburgh, for the Glasgow Archaeological Society.

Abstract - This book represents the final definitive report on the excavations of a major, but previously neglected, castle which has one of the longest and richest archaeological sequences of any castle site in Scotland. Three major seasons of archaeological excavation were completed at Castle Hill, Dundonald (Ayrshire), between 1986 and 1988, in the course  of a programme of conservation work carried out by Historic Scotland. The archaeological work revealed six periods of occupation, beginning with fortifications dating to the transition from later prehistory to the Early Historic period through to a series of increasingly complex castles built by the Stewarts. The discoveries indicate that Dundonald was a major power centre within the Kingdom of Strathclyde and suggest that it was a royal castle from Early Historic times. Subsequently, when the site came into the possession of the Stewarts in the twelfth-century, a motte-and-bailey castle with a timber hall was constructed. This was succeeded in the thirteenth century by an elaborate castle of enclosure with opposing twin-towered gatehouses. It saw significant military action, refortification and destruction  during the Wars of Independence. This castle was in turn replaced by the late 14th-century castle of King Robert II, with its massive tower-house and enclosure wall or barmkin. This book gives a detailed account of the structural development of the castle over several centuries and discusses its historical and architectural implications. Specialist reports on the pottery, stone objects, glass, metalwork, animal bones and plant remains add further information about the economy and daily life of its inhabitants.  


Denys Pringle (2002) Spynie Palace and the Bishops of Moray: History, Architecture and Archaeology. Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, Edinburgh.

Abstract - Spynie Palace was the proncipal resdence of the bishops of Moray from the 13th century until the Reformation. In 1690, with the final abolition of episcopacy in the Church of Scotland, it passed to the Crown, and in 1838 the palace, by then in rins, and its surrounding lands were sold into private ownership. Only in 1973 did the stste resume responsibility for what remained of the monument when a guardianship agreement was made with the owner.

Between 1974 and 1994, when the palace was finally opened to the public, the Ancient Monuments Division of the Depatment of the Environment (now Historic Scotland) undertook a thorough programme of masonry consolidation. From 1986, when the architects and masons began to require ground clearance in order to complete their task, this work was accompanied by a programme of archaeological excavation, directed by John Lewis.

This volume represents the final definitive report on the archaeological work carried out at Spynie between 1986 and 1994, tracing the above- and below-ground archaeology of the site and placing it in its historical context. It is written by John Lewis, who directed the excavations, and Denys Pringle, who oversaw the archaeological project for Historic Scotland between 1988 and 1999, with specialist reports by other authors.


Denys Pringle (2000) Belmont Castle: The Excavation of a Crusader Stronghold in the Kingdom of Jerusalem. Oxford University Press, Oxford, for the Council for British Research in the Levant.

Abstract - This book represents the final definitive publication of the excavations that were conducted by the British School of Archaeology in Jerusalem on the site of the Crusader castle of Belmont (Suba), in the Judaean hills west of Jerusalem, between 1986 and 1989. The excavations and associated documentary research indicate that Belmont began its existence as a manorhouse or maison-forte in the first half of the 12th century; at that time it probably represented the country seat of a fief-holding knight on the royal domain. By the 1140s, however, the area in whichBelmont lay had been acquired by the Hospital of St John, which subsequently developed nearby Abu Ghosh (idenified at that time as Biblical Emmaus) as the centre of an extensive estate. Following the Hospitallers’ take-over, while another nearby maison-forte, Aqua Bella, was converted into a priory or infirmary building, Belmont was extended and developed as a concentric castle, dominating the landscape round about. A polygonal outer ward was added to the original rectangular maison-forte on top of the hill and ranges of vaulted buildings were constructed within it. This castle fell to Saladin in 1187 and was slighted by the Ayyubids in 1191. After that, the site was occupied by a village until 1948.

The account of the excavation is preceded by a historical introduction and a discusion of the castle’s archaeological setting. It is followed by specialist reports on the coins and tokens, pottery, ceramic lamps, Persian seal impressions, glass, metalwork, Ottoman clay tobacco pipes, and objects of stone, bone and teracotta. A detailed analysis is given of the faunal remains; and a concluding chapter discusses the castles architecture and planning, its military functions, and its economic role within an agricultural estate that developed in the later 12th

century to produce food and revenue for the Hospital in Jerusalem.


Denys Pringle (2000) Fortification and Settlement in Crusader Palestine. Ashgate: Aldershot.

Abstract - The studies collected in this volume examine the physical remains of Frankish settlement in Palestine in the 12th and 13th centuries. In recent years the view that Frankish settlement was largely confined to the towns, with few westerners venturing out into the open countryside, has come to be challenged in the light ot new archaeological evidence and re-examination of the documentary sources. The present studies (written between 1979 and 1999) contribute to an understanding of the nature of Frankish settlement by illustrating aspects of the relationship between fortification and settlement: in particular, the role of castles and towers in promoting settlement and in providing their inhabitants with both security and domestic accommodation; the relationship between castles, towers and other semi-fortified rural structures; the physical planning of two of the ‘new towns’ established by the canons of the Holy Sepulchre; the measures undertaken to defend urban settlements; and the contribution that town walls and castles made to the security of the kingdom.

Please visit the Ashgate webpage for further details about this book.


Denys Pringle (1998) The Churches of the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem: A Corpus, vol. 2. L-Z (excluding Tyre). Cambridge University Press: Cambridge.

Abstract - This is the second of a series of four volumes which are intended to present a complete Corpus of all the church buildings, of both the Western and the Oriental rites, built, rebuilt or simply in use in the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem between the capture of Jerusalem by the First Crusade in 1099 and the loss of Acre in 1291.

The project of which this series represents the final, definitive publication has been sponsored since 1979 by the British School of Archaeology in Jerusalem (now the Council for British Research in the Levant). When complete the Corpus will contain a topographical listing of all the 500 or so church buildings of the Kingdom that are attested by documentary or surviving evidence, and individual descriptions and discussion of them in terms of their identification, building history and architecture. Some of the buildings have already been published before, while many others are published here for the first time. A feature of the Corpus, however, is the standardized format in which the evidence for each building is presented: this also extends to the plans and elevations, based for the most part on new field surveys, which are drawn to a uniform style and (so far as is practicable) scale.


Denys Pringle (1997) Secular Buildings in the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem: An Archaeological Gazetteer. Cambridge University Press: Cambridge.

Abstract - This book contains a descriptive gazetteer of the secular buildings (including industrial sites) known by their surviving remains to have existed within the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem. The site descriptions take the form of bief notes with full bibliographical references and location maps, accompanied in most cases by photographs and drawings. The gazetteer is preceded by an introduction which analyses the range of building types to be found in the Crusader kingdom, and is followed by a supplementary gazetteer listing other sites sites ‘possibles’, ‘rejects’ or ‘don’t knows.

The gazetteer was compiled under the auspices of the British School of Archaeology in Jeruaalem and published as a companion to the four-volume corpus, The Churches of the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem.


Denys Pringle (1993) The Churches of the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem: A Corpus, vol. 1. A-K (excluding Acre and Jerusalem). Cambridge University Press: Cambridge.

Abstract - This is the first of a series of four volumes which are intended to present a complete Corpus of all the church buildings, of both the Western and the Oriental rites, built, rebuilt or simply in use in the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem between the capture of Jerusalem by the First Crusade in 1099 and the loss of Acre in 1291.

The project of which this series represents the final, definitive publication has been sponsored since 1979 by the British School of Archaeology in Jerusalem (now the Council for British Research in the Levant). When complete the Corpus will contain a topographical listing of all the 500 or so church buildings of the Kingdom that are attested by documentary or surviving evidence, and individual descriptions and discussion of them in terms of their identification, building history and architecture. Some of the buildings have already been published before, while many others are published here for the first time. A feature of the Corpus, however, is the standardized format in which the evidence for each building is presented: this also extends to the plans and elevations, based for the most part on new field surveys, which are drawn to a uniform style and (so far as is practicable) scale.


Denys Pringle (1988) Crusader Castles. Clarendon Press: Oxford.

Abstract - This is a new edition of the classic text on Crusader castles and their relation to military architecture in the West which was written by T.E. Lawrence while still an undergraduate at Oxford in 1910. At the end of the 19th century , it was generally assumed that these castles were the prototype for the massive buildings erected in Northern France and England in the 12th and 13th centuryies. Lawrence opposed this view. Unlike most earlier writers on the subject, he was already familiar with castles in England, Wales, France, and Syria as a result of a series of expeditions made on bicycle or foot, culminating in 1909 in a three-month tour of the Levant, in which he visited some 40 different sites. Although his thesis was to guarantee him a first-class degree in Modern History, its impact on scholarship was slower to take effect. The typescript remained virtually unknown until 1936, a year after the author’s death, when it appeared in a limited edition of the Golden Cockerel Press.

In this edition the original text is reproduced without altaration; but a selection of the pencilled notes that Lawrence added to the typescript in preparation for a revision that was never made are included as footnotes, together with additional editorial notes and bibliographical details. Lawrence’s thesis, that Crusader castles of the 12th century owed more to castles in the West than to anything the Franks may have found in the East, and that western military architecture absorbed little or nothing from that of the Orient before the end of the 12th

century, is also assessed in the light of 75 years of subsequent research in a new Introduction.


Denys Pringle (1986) The Red Tower (al-Burj al-Ahmar): Settlement in the Plain of Sharon at the Time of the Crusaders and Mamluks (A.D. 1099-1516). British School of Archaeology in Jerusalem, London.

Abstract - The Crusaders’ settlement of Palestine in the 12th and 13th centuries has been seen in terms of the domination of a native peasantry by an alien military elite and as Europe’s first experiment in overseas colonization. This monograph attemps to shed light on the effects that the Crusader conquest of 1099 would have had on the pattern of settlement in the country by considering one particular part of it, the central Sharon Plain.

In 1983, excavations conducted by the author for the British School of Archaeology in Jerusalem at the Red Tower, a small Crusader castle in the centre of the plain, were combined with programme of archaeological field survey in the surrounding region. The combined evidence from archaeology and from the documentary sources suggests that the Crusader occupation did little more for rural settlement in the area than to slow down temporarily a process that was already well advanced, whereby sites in the low-lying coastal region were abandoned in favour of ones in the foothills on the eastern side of the plain. With the Mamluk conquest of the area in 1265, this process was resumed but now with some active encouragement from the state.


Denys Pringle (1981) The Defence of Byzantine Africa from Justinian to the Arab Conquest: An Account of the Military History and Archaeology of the African Provinces in the Sixth and Seventh Centuries, 2 vols. British Archaeological Reports: Oxford

Abstract - The book examines the military history and archaeology of Byzantine Africa (i.e. the equivalent of the modern states of Algeria and Tunisia, and Tripolitania in modern Libya), concentrating in particular on fortifications, from the time of the recapture of the area by Justinian’s generals in the sixth century to that of its loss to the Muslim Arabs at the end of the seventh.