Nicosia Municipality - Richard the Lionheart and the Knights Templar

Richard the Lionheart and the Knights Templar

THE MUNICIPALITY / History / History of Nicosia / Richard the Lionheart and the Knights Templar
Richard the Lionheart 1191 AD

In 1191, Isaac Comnenus was the ruler of Cyprus.


… Isaac came to Cyprus, took it, and was proclaimed king. He ruled over it for several years, and not only utterly despoiled the land, and perpetually harassed the lives of its rich men, but every day he hounded and oppressed its nobles, so that all lived in distress, and sought how by any means they might protect themselves against him…

Richard the Lionheart organizes the Third Crusade. He and his fleet were on their way to the Holy Land when one of his ships ran aground in Limassol and his fiance Berengaria of Navarre was taken prisoner by Isaac Comnenus. Richard landed his army on the island and having looted whatever he found on his way, laid siege to Nicosia. He finally met and defeated Isaac at Tremetousia. Richard the Lionheart became ruler of the island but sold the island to the Templars.

The Knights Templar

The Templars ruled the island having bought it from Richard the Lionheart for 100,000 gold byzantiums. Their seat of power was the castle of Nicosia. On Easter day on April 11, 1192, the people of Nicosia revolted and drove the Templars away from the city. Fearing the return of the Templars, the people of Nicosia demolished the castle of the city almost to its foundations.