Female Succession in the Kingdom of Jerusalem in the Twelfth Century
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This paper explores the question of queenship in the Crusader States, specifically the Kingdom of Jerusalem in the twelfth century. It seeks to understand how women were able to gain and wield power in a time when they were viewed solely as diplomatic links between dynasties and transmitters of royal blood. Research was done through a close reading of primary and secondary sources concerning the history of the Crusader States, medieval queenship, and other ancillary topics, as well as through case studies of important female rulers from the Holy Land and Western Europe. From this research I argue that internal and external political stability was required for women to effectively rule, but if those conditions were met, a queen could be influential.