- Historical event
- 25 December 1100
- The coronation ceremony was held in the famous town of Bethlehem, the place of Christ’s birth (Bethlehem is only about seven kilometers south of Jerusalem).
On this day, exactly on Christmas Day in 1100, the first Crusader King of Jerusalem was crowned. His name was Baldwin, and he came from the illustrious family of the Counts of Boulogne. This French dynasty was named after the town of Boulogne on the coast of the English Channel, south of Calais. The Crusaders took Jerusalem from Muslims the year before (1099), during the First Crusade.
King Baldwin was one of the leaders of the First Crusade, but was subordinate to his older brothers. Specifically, among the Crusaders were three brothers from the Boulogne family. The oldest brother was called Eustace and he, as the firstborn, was the ruling Count of Boulogne. The middle brother was named Godfrey of Bouillon and he, after the conquest of Jerusalem, became the first ruler of the Crusader state. However, he did not take the title of king, but the much more humble title of “Defender of the Holy Sepulcher” (referring to Christ’s tomb in Jerusalem). Only when Godfrey died was he succeeded by the third and youngest of the brothers – Baldwin – who was crowned on this day. Baldwin was the first to openly take the title of King of Jerusalem. The coronation ceremony was held in the famous town of Bethlehem, the place of Christ’s birth (Bethlehem is only about seven kilometers south of Jerusalem).