William of Malines

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William of Malines or Messines (died 1145/7) was the first medieval Archbishop of Tyre from 1128 to 1130 and thereafter Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem until his death. He is sometimes called William I to distinguish him from Bishop William II of Tyre and William of Agen, second patriarch of that name.

William was from England, perhaps the younger son of a noble house, and had previously been the prior of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, possibly the Canons Regular of the Holy Sepulchre, a man of "praiseworthy habits".[1] In 1127 Baldwin II of Jerusalem sent William and Roger, Bishop of Ramla, to Rome to seek the approval of Pope Honorius II for Baldwin's plan to make Fulk V of Anjou his successor.[2] He was succeeded at Tyre by Fulk of Angoulême late in 1130, when he was transferred to Jerusalem. He was content to resolve a dispute between the monarch and the previous patriarch, Stephen of La Ferté, in the monarch's favour.[3] He was an important supporter of Melisende during her regency and is described, a man capable yet pliable.[4] He received a letter from Bernard of Clairvaux urging him to support the Knights Templar, who had received their papal privileges at the same time as William's embassy to Rome.[5] William took the initiative in constructing a castle, the Chastel Arnould (Castrum Arnaldi) at Yalo, to guard the road between Jerusalem and Jaffa in 1132–33, along with some citizens. It was later a Templar stronghold.[6] In 1139 William refused a plan of Fulk of Angoulême's to regain his suffragans that were then in the Principality of Antioch and therefore under the authority of its Patriarch. William would not allow the archbishop of Tyre, whose archdiocese lay within the boundaries of the Kingdom of Jerusalem and his patriarchate, to become the subject of another.[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Christopher Tyerman, England and the Crusades, 1095–1588 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1996), 29.
  2. ^ Malcolm Barber, The Templars: Selected Sources (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2002), 7.
  3. ^ Robert L. Nicholson, "The Growth of the Latin States, 1118–1144", A History of the Crusades, I: The First Hundred Years, ed. M. W. Baldwin (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1969), 432 n17.
  4. ^ Nicholson, 444.
  5. ^ Malcolm Barber, The New Knighthood: A History of the Order of the Temple (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1995), 59.
  6. ^ Marianne Ailes and Malcolm Barber, The History of the Holy War: Ambroise's Estoire de la Guerre Sainte, II. Translation (Boydell Press, 2003), 125.
  7. ^ Jean Richard, "The Political and Ecclesiastical Organization of the Crusader States", A History of the Crusades, V: The Impact of the Crusades on the Near East (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1985), 240–41.
Catholic Church titles
Preceded by
Archbishop of Tyre
Succeeded by
Fulk of Angoulême
Preceded by
Stephen of La Ferté
Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem
Succeeded by
Fulk of Angoulême