Crusaders, Lordship of Sidon, Anonymous Copper, c. 1250 - 1291

Actual Knights Templar


Bronze pougeoise, Malloy Crusaders -, Metcalf Crusaders -; see Malloy Crusaders p. 152 ff. for a discussion of the coinage of Sidon and similar types, VF, uneven strike, 1.682g, 16.9mm, obverse cross, pellet in each angle, within square with bar from each corner, very crude inscription, H...O...; reverse pellet in triangle, pellets around. TOTALLY UNIQUE NO OTHER COIN LIKE IT IN ANY REFERENCE!!!

From the collection of Alex G. Malloy, former dealer for 40 years and co-author of "Coins of the Crusader States."

ALSO: Ex John J. Slocum Collection. John Slocum was in the American diplomatic service in the Holy Land where he collected rare and unique coins in the 1960's.

Wow! That Templar coin is unbelieveable! "Good sandals, strong body, open air, long Path". -- E.B., Prescott, AZ

During the First Crusade, on December 4, 1110, Sidon was captured by King Baldwin of Jerusalem and King Sigurd of Norway. It became the center of the Lordship of Sidon, an important seigneury in the Kingdom of Jerusalem. Under the crusaders, Sidon was sacked several times and nearly destroyed by the Saracens in 1249, and again by the Mongols in 1260.

About month after the capture of Acre in late spring 1291, Al-Ashraf Khalil sent a force led by Emir al-Shuja'i to Sidon. The Knights Templar had moved their treasure to Sidon and taken refuge inside a sea castle on an isle about 90 meters from the shore. When the Sultan's forces began to build a bridge the knights escaped by sea and crusader rule of Sidon ended.

The fabric and crudeness in design of the anonymous copper pieces, such as this coin, put them in into a similar time frame as the anonymous copper of Tripoli and Antioch, perhaps during the Mongol invasions of the 1250s or perhaps later.