Acasă Articole RTR Cucerirea şi devastarea Constantinopolului la 1204

Cucerirea şi devastarea Constantinopolului la 1204


The conquering and the ravage of Constantinople through the crusaders. (1204)

In this essay we try to present with the help of the sources how the army of the fourth crusade attacked, conquered and sacked the capital of the Byzantine empire, Constantinople. The sack of the Byzantine capital was outrageous. Even the chroniclers such as Villehardouin, Robert de Clari, the bishop of Halberstadt and Gunther from Pairis are overwhelmed by the immensity of wealth they saw in Constantinople. The greed was so large that the common knights, such as Robert de Clari, barely got something from the booty. Many relics were stolen, and huge amounts of gold, silver, or silk were robbed. People were massacred, the best description of the dramatic scenes we find at Choniates, the Byzantine chronicler. The only victory of this so called crusade was gained by Venice. The maritime  Republic orchestrate the whole campaign and was the western factor who gained full success. Venice has the main guilt in the tragic happenings of 1204 but we must say that the Republic is also the winner of the events. This conflict between these two worlds ( the Western Latin and the Byzantine Greek one) was inevitable after we saw the misunderstandings and hostilities they had towards each other in the last two centuries. This military confrontation was inevitable. The differences between their civilizations, mentalities, ideologies, believes brought them into conflict. The separation of the two Christian worlds was after the fourth crusade sealed. The Norman attacks, the Venetian economic monopol, the crusades, the scission of the churches were some of the main reasons which found their ending in the inevitable events from 1204. We had two different cultures that couldn’t live together at that moment..
Keywords: Constantinople, Venice, Dandolo, Choniates, Villehardouin, Robert de Clari, Gunther of Pairis, crusaders, Innocent IIIrd, Alexios IV

  • Anonymous of Soissons, Concerning the Land of
    Jerusalem and the Means by which Relics were carried to this
    Church from the city of Constantinople, în: Alfred J. Andrea,
    Contemporary Sources of the fourth crusade, Boston, 2000, p.
  • Devastatio Constantinopolitana, în: Alfred J. Andrea,
    Contemporary Sources of the fourth crusade, Boston, 2000, p.
  • Gunther von Pairis, Die Geschichte der Eroberung von
    Konstantinopel, Köln, Graz, 1956.
  • Niketas Choniates, Historia, ed. J. Dieten, Berlin,
  • Robert de Clari, La Conquete de Constantinople, Paris,
  • The Deeds of the Bishop of Halberstadt, în: Alfred J.
    Andrea, Contemporary Sources of the fourth crusade, Boston,
    2000, p. 193-222.
  • G. de Villehardouin, Cucerirea Constantinopolului /
    The Conquest of Constantinople, Cluj, 2002.