1404 UNIVERSAL HISTORY-THE MODERN WORLD.
chief Barbacan, set at naught all rules of war
and peace. The Hospitallers had not yet succeeded in restoring the walls of Jerusalem,
and the invaders immediately directed their
march against that city. Unprepared for defense, the Knights abandoned Zion to her fate.
In the year 1242 the Corasmins appeared
before the ruined ramparts and entered
without resistance. Then followed a scene
of butchery hardly equaled by the massacre
of the Moslems by the army of Godfrey. In
this instance Christian and Mohammedan
were treated with no discrimination. Nor did
the savages desist from their work with the
destruction of human life. The churches
were robbed and desecrated; the tombs,
broken open and rifled; the sacred places,
profaned. Jerusalem, already desolate, was
converted into a waste.
No other such desperate barbarians had
been seen in Palestine since the dawn of history. In order to stay their course, the
Knights of Syria and the Moslems joined their
forces; but the Emir of Egypt made common
cause with the Corasmins. Even a casual
glance at the composition of the two confederate armies could not fail to show the complete and utter demoralization of the conflict
between the Christ and the Prophet. The
original antipathies of Christian and Moslem
had given place to other conditions of hostility in which the old-time antagonism of
Cross and Crescent were forgotten.
The confederate army of Knights and Syrian Moslems was presently induced by the patriarch of Jerusalem and other zealots to risk
a battle with the combined forces of Corasmins and Egyptians. Never was there a more