The baronies of Outremer could be very substantial or almost insignificant. Jonathan Riley-Smith in his Atlas of the Crusades, for example, lists the baronies of Sidon, Galilee, and Jaffa/Ascalon as all owing 100 knights, while according to the incomplete records of John d’Ibelin, the Bishops of Nazareth and Lydda owed 6 and 10 knights respectively. (John d’Ibelin, Count of Jaffa and Ascalon, was writing in the mid-13th century but attempting to catalogue military service owed to the King of Jerusalem at the time of his grandfather Balian d’Ibelin.)
Last but not least, the Kings of Jerusalem had the right to issue the “arriere ban” which obligated every free man to come to the defense of the kingdom. This was in effect an early form of the “levee en masse” of the French Revolution. Significantly, the King of Jerusalem could command the service of his vassals for a full year, not just 40 days as in the West, but such service was intended for the defense of the realm. If the king took his army outside the borders on an offensive expedition, he was required to pay for the services of his subjects.
Feudal warfare in the Kingdom of Jerusalem was an unavoidable feature of a nobleman's life as described in my award-winning three-part biography of Balian Baron of Ibelin.
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