October 2, 1187: The Muslims capture Jerusalem after the twelve-day Siege of Jerusalem.

After the decisive Battle of Hattin, Kurdish-Muslim leader Saladin had all but conquered the Kingdom of Jerusalem- all that was left was to take the city itself. On September 20, he began the Siege of Jerusalem. The siege lasted twelve days until the Crusaders under Lord Balian of Ibelin offered to negotiate peace with the Muslims. Saladin refused at first, but he eventually acquiesced.

On October 2, the Muslims took control of Jerusalem after 88 years of Christian rule; unlike the Crusaders, however, they did not massacre the city’s inhabitants (though they enslaved some citizens unable to pay ransom). Though Richard the Lionheart would attempt to recapture Jerusalem in 1189-1192, it would remain under the Muslims until the Sixth Crusade. The Siege of Jerusalem is featured prominently in Ridley Scott’s semi-historical film Kingdom of Heaven.

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