Nubia, Ethiopia, and the Crusading World, 1095-1402  book cover
1st Edition

Nubia, Ethiopia, and the Crusading World, 1095-1402

ISBN 9780367481216
Published September 16, 2022 by Routledge
252 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

The Crusades had a wide variety of impacts on societies throughout Europe, Asia, and Africa. One such notable impact was its role in the development of knowledge between cultures. This book argues that the Nubian kingdom of Dotawo and the Latin Christians became increasingly more connected between the twelfth and early fourteenth centuries than has been acknowledged. Subsequently, when Solomonic Ethiopian-Latin Christian diplomatic relations began in 1402, they were building on the prior connections of Nubia, either wittingly or unwittingly: Ethiopia became the ‘Ethiopia’ that the Latin Christians had previously been aiming to develop relations with. The histories of Nubia, Ethiopia, and the Crusades were directly and indirectly entwined between the twelfth century and 1402. 

By placing Nubia and Ethiopia within the wider context of the Crusades, new perspectives can be made regarding the international activity of Nubia and Ethiopia between the twelfth and fifteenth centuries and the regional role reversal of Dotawo and Solomonic Ethiopia from the early fourteenth century. Prior to the fourteenth century, Nubia had been the dominant Christian power in the region before Solomonic Ethiopia began to replace it, including by adopting elements of discourse which had previously been attributed to Nubia, such as its ruler being the recognised protector of the Christians of north-east Africa. This process should not be viewed in isolation of the wider regional geo-political context. 

Nubia, Ethiopia, and the Crusading World, 1095-1402 will appeal to all those interested in the history of the Crusades, Nubia, and Ethiopia, particularly concerning inter-regional physical and intellectual connectivity. 

Table of Contents


Chapter I: The Definition of Ethiopia through Time and Place

Chapter II: Knowing Nubia and Ethiopia on the Eve of the Crusades

Chapter III: Sources for Knowledge between Nubia, Ethiopia, and the Latin Christians in the Holy Land and Egypt

Chapter IV: Competing Nubian and Ethiopian Prester Johns

Chapter V: Latin Christian Uses of Developing Knowledge of Nubia and Ethiopia

Chapter VI: The Nubian and Ethiopian Response


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Adam Simmons is currently a Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellow at Nottingham Trent University. His research centres on the regional and inter-regional roles of pre-sixteenth-century African kingdoms and communities and their relationships with the wider world since the fourth century.