Fordham University            The Jesuit University of New York

Diplomatic Texts from Cyprus


After the fall of Jerusalem in 1291, Cyprus was the eastern-most outpost of western rulership, and as such served as an important point of interaction for other Latin colonies in the East. Many westerners who had lived in the Holy Land, and in Acre in particular, relocated to Cyprus following the Muslim victory. There had been a tradition of diplomatic texts in French emenating from the noble courts since the establishment of the Lusignan dynasty and their supporters in 1191, and French was sometimes used in correspondance addressed to the king of Cyprus, his queen, or members of his court.

Among those who relocated to Cyprus after 1291 were the Hospitallers, who brought their extensive cache of diplomatic documents with them. This corpus of French-language documents remains a strong witness to the use of French in both the Holy Land and in Cyprus.


Karl Borchardt, "Documents from the Hospitaller Registers on Rhodes concerning Cyprus," in Diplomatics in the Eastern Mediterranean 1000-1500, 159-170. Edited by Alexander D. Beihammer, Maria G. Parani and Christopher D. Schable. Leiden: Brill, 2008.



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