Post-classical history

Hugh IV of Cyprus (1295-1359)

King of Cyprus and titular king of Jerusalem (1324-1359).

The son of Guy, a younger son of King Hugh III of Cyprus, and Eschiva of Ibelin, Hugh succeeded his uncle, Henry II (1285-1324) to the throne of Cyprus in preference to two elderly aunts whose claim to the succession was arguably stronger. During his reign, at least until the time of the Black Death (1348), Cyprus enjoyed its greatest period of prosperity during the Middle Ages.

Hugh participated in various Christian leagues against the Turks in the Aegean region and was able to place the Turkish emirates of southern Anatolia under tribute. However, he appears to have been careful to avoid conflict with the Mamlûk sultanate. He seems to have been of a curmudgeonly disposition, treating his own kinsmen with considerable harshness, and even imprisoning his own sons, Peter (the future Peter I) and John, after they had absconded to the West.

Hugh married twice. A son by his first marriage, Guy, predeceased him, leaving a son of his own, Hugh of Galilee, and it was probably to prevent this grandson from asserting a claim to the throne that Hugh had Peter I, his eldest son by his second marriage, crowned in his own lifetime shortly before he died.

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