Post-classical history

Historia de expeditione Friderici imperatoris

The Historia is a detailed narrative of the Third Crusade (1189-1192), whose core consists of an account of the expedition of Frederick I Barbarossa, Holy Roman Emperor, from its departure from Regensburg (11 May 1189) up to Frederick’s death (10 June 1190).

The work was originally composed as three separate reports sent to Germany by an eyewitness who was probably a member of the imperial chancery. One of the four manuscripts (MS Praha, Strahovska knihovna, DF.III.1), written between 1202 and 1221, adds an introduction containing texts of five letters concerning the summoning of the crusade, as well as a continuation dealing with events up to 1197. An Austrian cleric called Ansbert, who is named in this manuscript, can probably be regarded as the author of one or more of the original reports and the compiler of the longest version of the Historia.

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