Encyclopedia  |   World Factbook  |   World Flags  |   Reference Tables  |   List of Lists     
   Academic Disciplines  |   Historical Timeline  |   Themed Timelines  |   Biographies  |   How-Tos     
Sponsor by The Tattoo Collection
Humphrey IV of Toron
Main Page | See live article | Alphabetical index

Humphrey IV of Toron

Humphrey IV of Toron (c. 1166- c. 1192) was the lord of Toron, Kerak, and Oultrejordain in the crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem.

He was the son of Humphrey III of Toron and Stephanie of Milly, and grandson of Humphrey II, former constable of Jerusalem. He was also a stepson of Raynald of Chatillon, who married Stephanie when Humphrey III died. Humphrey's sister Isabella was married to Rupen III of Armenia. The lords of Toron were one of the original crusader families and were supporters of the barons' faction, as opposed to the new crusader princes who tended to come from Europe to marry into the royal family. Humphrey IV became lord of Toron when Humphrey II died in 1179.

Humphrey IV, as a member of an old family, was therefore an anomaly in the royal family; in 1180 he became betrothed to Isabella of Jerusalem, daughter of former king Amalric I, under the agreement that Toron would become a royal territory. In November of 1183 Humphrey and the eleven-year old Isabella were married in the fortress of Kerak, which was at the same time besieged by Saladin. Humphrey's mother convinced Saladin not to direct his attack against the tower in which the marriage was taking place, although he continued to besiege the rest of the fortress; Kerak was eventually relieved by king Baldwin IV.

In 1186, when Baldwin V died, Raynald tried to convince him to claim the throne through Isabella. However, Humphrey, not known to be ambitious or confrontational, instead chose to support Guy of Lusignan, husband of Isabella's sister Sibylla, and Raynald and the other nobles followed his support, even though Guy was a newcomer.

Guy proved to be an ineffective king, and Saladin invaded the kingdom in 1187. Humphrey was captured at the Battle of Hattin that year, but was let go and returned to Kerak to prepare for its defense. He was captured again when Kerak fell in 1189, but was again set free.

The barons of Jerusalem had only begrudgingly accepted Guy as king because of Humphrey's influence, and after the fall of Jerusalem they turned against him. During the Third Crusade in 1190 the Patriarch annulled Humphrey's marriage to Isabella, based on the newcomer Conrad of Montferrat's argument that she had married Humphrey while underage. Humphrey and Isabella were a devoted couple and did not want to divorce, but Humphrey did not want to cause any conflict with the other barons. Humphrey was also intimidated into the divorce by Guy of Senlis, a French noble, who challenged him to combat (Humphrey refused). Conrad then married Isabella himself (although he was already married), and claimed the throne of Jerusalem through her, with the support of the other barons, especially the powerful Ibelin family.

Humphrey allied himself with Richard Lionheart, first in the capture of Cyprus and then against Saladin. As Humphrey was fluent in Arabic he was able to negotiate with Saladin on Richard's behalf. In 1192, when Conrad was assassinated by the Hashshashin, Humphrey, along with Richard and various others, were suspected to be involved, although this is unlikely. Isabella was then married off to Henry II of Champagne, over the protests of Humphrey, who argued that the annulment of their marriage was invalid due to Conrad's bigamy.

Humphrey probably died soon after this.