Post-classical history

Bohemund IV of Antioch-Tripoli (d. 1233)

Count of Tripoli and prince of Antioch (1201-1233), whose claims to Antioch were contested for over twenty years by his nephew, Raymond-Rupen.

The second son of Bohemund III of Antioch, Bohemund IV was installed by his father as count of Tripoli on the death of the childless Count Raymond III, who had originally designated Bohemund IV’s older brother, Raymond, as his heir. As Raymond was already foreseen as future ruler of the principality of Antioch, these dispositions sowed the seeds of future conflict over the succession to the principality. Raymond died in 1197, leaving a young son, Raymond-Rupen. On the death of Bohemund III (April 1201), however, Bohemund IV seized the city of Antioch (mod. Antakya, Turkey), dispossessing his young nephew. Bohemund received the support of the commune of Antioch, which disliked Ray- mond-Rupen’s Armenian connections. To gain the support of the commune’s largely Greek members, Bohemund in 1206 expelled the Latin patriarch, Peter of Angoulême, and installed a Greek patriarch, Symeon II. A coup mounted by Peter against Bohemund failed in 1207; the patriarch subsequently starved to death in prison. Bohemund accepted a Latin patriarch back into the city the following year.

Raymond-Rupen’s principal ally was his great-uncle King Leon I of Cilicia, who captured Antioch and had his great-nephew inaugurated as prince in 1216, forcing Bohe- mund to retreat to Tripoli. Leon returned the castle of Baghras (mod. Bagra, Turkey) to the Templars, as well as confiscated land to Latin prelates, thus wooing many of the supporters of Bohemund. In 1220, however, Bohemund recaptured the city from his nephew. Raymond-Rupen invaded Cilicia, claiming its throne by right of his mother, Alice, but he was captured and died in prison. The threat from the Saljûqs brought Antioch and the Armenians together, and Bohemund’s younger son, Philip, was married to the young queen of Cilicia, Isabella. Despite joining the Armenian church, Philip remained Latin at heart, and he was deposed and poisoned by the Armenian Het‘umid dynasty in 1224.

Bohemund IV was married twice: first to Plaisance of Gibelet, by whom he had four children, and second to Melisende of Cyprus, by whom he had Maria, later claimant to the throne of Jerusalem. Bohemund died in March 1233, reconciled to the Latin Church at his death. He was succeeded in both Antioch and Tripoli by his eldest son, Bohemund V.

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