Siege of Antioch

The Siege of Antioch took place during the First Crusade in 1097 and 1098. The first siege, by the crusaders against the Muslim-held city, lasted from 21 October 1097 to 2 June 1098. Antioch lay on the crusaders' route to Palestine, and anticipating that it would be attacked the Muslim governor of the city, Yaghi-Siyan, began stockpiling food and sending requests for help. The Byzantine walls surrounding the city presented a formidable obstacle to its capture, so the leaders of the crusade decided to besiege Antioch.

The crusaders arrived outside the city on 21 October and began the siege. The garrison sortied unsuccessfully on 29 December. After stripping the surrounding area of food, the crusaders were forced to look farther afield for supplies, opening themselves to ambush and while searching for food on 31 December, a force of 20,000 crusaders encountered a relief force led by Duqaq of Damascus heading to Antioch and defeated the army. However, supplies dwindled and in early 1098 one in seven of the crusaders was dying from starvation and people began deserting in January.

A second relief force, this time under the command of Ridwan of Aleppo advanced towards Antioch, arriving on 9 February. Like the army of Duqaq before, it was defeated. Antioch was captured on 3 June, although the citadel remained in the hands of the Muslim defenders. Kerbogha began the second siege, against the crusaders who had occupied Antioch, which lasted from 7 June to 28 June 1098. The second siege ended when the crusaders exited the city to engage Kerbogha's army in battle and succeeded in defeating them. On seeing the Muslim army routed, the defenders remaining in the citadel surrendered.

Read more about Siege Of Antioch:  Background, Capture of Antioch, Second Siege, Battle of Antioch, Aftermath

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... The crusader army, meanwhile, marched on to Antioch, which lay about halfway between Constantinople and Jerusalem ... a capitulation, or find a traitor inside the city—a tactic that had previously seen Antioch change to the control of the Byzantines and then the Seljuq Turks—the ... During the almost eight months of the siege, they were forced to defeat two large relief armies under the leadership of Duqaq and Fakhr al-Mulk Radwan ...

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