Accursed Tower The Crusaders' Last Battle for the Holy Land Roger Crowley

Publication date:
25 Aug 2020
Yale University Press
304 pages: 235 x 156mm
40 b-w and color illus.
Sales territories:
World excluding North America, US territories, Malaysia, Singapore, and the Philippines

The city of Acre, powerfully fortified and richly provisioned, was the last crusader stronghold. When it fell in 1291, two hundred years of Christian crusading in the Holy Land came to a bloody end. With his customary narrative brilliance and immediacy, Roger Crowley chronicles the tumultuous and violent attack on Acre, the heaviest bombardment before the age of gunpowder, which left this once great Mediterranean city a crumbling ruin.

The ‘Accursed Tower’ was the focal point of this siege. As the last garrison of the Crusader defences, it came to symbolise the disintegration of the old world and the rise of a new era of Islamic jihad. Crowley’s narrative is based on forensic research, drawing heavily on little known first hand sources, both Christian and Arabic. This is a fast-paced and gripping account of a pivotal moment in world history.

Roger Crowley is a British historian and author. His four highly-acclaimed previous books include Constantinople (Faber, 2005) and New York Times bestseller, Empires of the Sea (Faber, 2011).

"Crowley writes with authority and flair"—Peter Frankopan, Financial Times

"Gripping and brilliantly researched [. . .] This is history red in tooth and claw"—Justin Marozzi, author of Islamic Empires

“Crowley provides a fast-paced narrative, woven with dexterity, building to a crescendo that describes the siege in all its harrowing detail”— Sophie Therese Ambler, BBC History Magazine

“This is an excellent all-encompassing account of the fall of the last Crusader strong-hold in the Holy Land” —Alexander Stilwell, Catholic Herald