Arsuf 1191


The crusader armies advanced slowly along the coast, with Saladin’s cavalry troops behind them. The Saracens tried to reach the camps to destroy them. However, there was no major battle, because the Christian troops skilfully pushed the enemy out of their way.

On September 7, 1191, Saladin decided to give a general battle a few kilometers north of Arsuf. Richard placed his army with his back to the sea, placed infantry and archers in front of the cavalry. On the right flank stood the Templars, and on the left the Joanites. French and Flemish knights stood between them.

The Saracens went on the attack before noon, the Christians were attacked by waves of light infantry, which did not cause much damage to the Christians. Then the Europeans were attacked by Turkish cavalry armed with sabers and axes. Each time, Richard lined up his archers, who showered the enemy with a hail of arrows.

In the course of the battle, the Hospitallers made an attack without the king’s permission. More troops followed. Saladin’s warriors could not withstand the well-coordinated cavalry attack and fled.