Eighth Crusade 1270 | Powerful Mamluk Massacre

King Louis IX | Eighth Crusade

In 1254 King Louis IX had been forced to retreat from Jerusalem as his troops were slaughtered by the Muslim Turk armies who had a fearsome reputation.

“The Eighth Crusade, though often overshadowed by its predecessors, stands as a testament to the enduring spirit of Christian fervor and the complexities of cross-cultural engagement. As history’s echoes resonate through time, this crusade reminds us of the intricate tapestry woven by faith, diplomacy, and military action.”

Professor Eleanor Thompson, Crusade Historian

However, King Louis IX was a devout Christian and it really hurt him personally to see Jerusalem in the hands of the Muslim Turks.

Medieval Jerusalem City Layout
Medieval City of Jerusalem

King Louis IX was a very determined and resolute French king and he had not given up on reclaiming the Holylands yet another crusade was launched by the Pope which would be the eighth crusade.


King Louis IX & The Mongol Armies

The Mongol army had a fearsome reputation and they were marching toward Muslim lands during the sixth crusade. Frederik II had negotiated to protect the Muslim lands if Jerusalem was handed back to the Christians by the Muslims.


King Louis IX the famous French king realized around the time of the 8th crusade that if he could combine the Christian and Mongol forces he would have a very powerful army capable of defeating the Muslim Turk armies and could reclaim the Holy lands for the Christians.

This would be King Louis’s secret weapon against the Muslim Turks.

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The Russian Mamluks & The Eighth Crusade

King Louis IX was however unaware that the Muslim Turks also had their own secret weapon secret warriors called the Mamluks who were a match for any warriors.

During this period in medieval history, the Muslim Turks had been kidnapping Russian children who they had brought up and trained to be extremely loyal and cruel warriors who showed no mercy to anyone.

Mamluk Cavalry Soldier

They were treated very badly by the Turks from the age they were kidnapped and were raised in a very hard way, this led to them being devastating warriors with no fear of death.

The Russian Mamluks were considered to be some of the greatest warriors in history.

Qutuz the Great Mamluk Leader

The Mamluk people even killed Arab Muslim leaders if they tried to hurt or kill another Mamluk and this led to the great Mamluk leader Qutuz coming to power.

When the Mamluk army finally met the powerful and all-conquering Mongol armies during the eighth crusade it was expected that the Mongol armies would be victorious, however to everyone’s shock the Mamluk army was victorious and defeated the Mongol armies.

Eighth Crusades Mameluke Warriors

King Louis XI dies during Eighth Crusade

King Louis XI never got to see the Christians reclaim the holy lands and his dreams were left in tatters, the Mongol army had been heavily defeated and King Louis XI had only been able to muster 10,000 of his own troops to fight in the eighth crusade.

Even worse things were to come for King Louis XI when he unexpectedly died of a stomach problem when his ship landed on the African coast.

“In the annals of crusading history, the Eighth Crusade emerges as a unique chapter marked by political maneuvering and unexpected alliances. King Louis IX’s audacious endeavor not only demonstrated his devotion to the cause but also revealed the delicate balance between ambition and reality that shaped the course of this captivating chapter in medieval warfare.”

Dr. Frederick Marshall, Medieval Studies Scholar

Mamluk Army & The Eighth Crusade Massacre

The Mamluk army continued their reign of destruction, killing everyone in sight who was an enemy during the eighth crusade, all the Christian Knights had been slaughtered and people in the city of Jerusalem were killed without mercy.

This finally brought an end to the eighth crusade around 1291 and the Arab forces ruled Jerusalem yet again.

Eighth Crusade | Great Books

“Saint Louis: Crusader King of France” by Margaret Wade Labarge
This biography explores the life and reign of King Louis IX of France, who led the Eighth Crusade. It delves into his motivations, leadership, and the context of the crusade within his reign.

“The Seventh Crusade, 1244–1254: Sources and Documents” edited by Peter Jackson
While focusing on the Seventh Crusade, this book includes primary sources and documents that shed light on the Eighth Crusade as well. It provides historical context and perspectives on these interconnected campaigns.

“Louis IX and the Challenge of the Crusade: A Study in Rulership” by William Chester Jordan
This book offers a detailed analysis of King Louis IX’s approach to crusading, including the Eighth Crusade. It examines the political, religious, and strategic aspects of his leadership in the context of the crusades.

“The Crusades: A Very Short Introduction” by Christopher Tyerman
While not solely focused on the Eighth Crusade, this book provides a concise overview of the entire crusading movement, including key events like the Eighth Crusade. It offers insights into the broader historical context.

“The Oxford Illustrated History of the Crusades” edited by Jonathan Riley-Smith
This comprehensive collection of essays covers various aspects of the crusades, including the Eighth Crusade. It features contributions from different scholars, providing a well-rounded perspective on this historical period.

These books offer varying degrees of focus on the Eighth Crusade, but collectively, they provide valuable insights into the events, motivations, and impact of this important historical event.

Eighth Crusade Fast Facts

  • King Louis Xl was a central figure in the 8th Crusade.
  • King Louis Xl was killed during the 8th Crusade.
  • The Mamluk army were victorious and slaughtered all the Christian knights.
  • The defeat of Christian armies in the 8th Crusade led to the Muslim rule of Jerusalem