Fort Ajloun, Muslim fortress • Jordan

Step into the captivating history of Ajloun Fortress in Jordan in just over 3 minutes! Uncover the secrets of this imposing Muslim fort, built to safeguard the lands against the Crusaders and bear witness to the power of the Ayyubid dynasty. Be enchanted by its majestic walls and breathtaking landscapes. Don't miss this unique opportunity to travel back in time from the comfort of your screen. Are you ready to be mesmerized by the beauty and history of Ajloun? Click the video and start your adventure now! Ajloun Fortress, Jordan's hidden gem, medieval history.

This film was made on the basis of photos and videos taken during the trip Jordan (EN)

vimeo chapterA click on this icon above displays the list of chapters of this film about Jordan. A click on a dot goes directly to a chapter.

Reading the text below will help you better understand the historical context of the sites shown in this video.

The Crusades 

The Middle Ages were marked by the crusades organized by the Church and the Christian monarchs of the time. The pretext for the first of these military expeditions was the refusal by the Seljuk Turks, who had become masters of Syria and Jerusalem, to let Christian pilgrims wishing to gather at the tomb of Christ in the Holy Land pass. 

This first crusade was to result in the capture of Jerusalem and the establishment of the Kingdom of Jerusalem with Godefroy de Bouillon designated as the first king of Jerusalem. However Godefroy de Bouillon refused this title which thus returned to Badouin 1st, brother of Godefroy de Bouillon. Other Christian states were created in the wake and they were named the Latin States of the East, covering the current Lebanon, Syria, part of Jordan as well as territories located in the South-East of Turkey. 

Historians have established that there were 8 successive crusades between 1095 and 1270. Military victories being very often ephemeral, the last 7 crusades were intended to defend or retake Jerusalem. 

The fortified castles 

To consolidate their conquests, the sovereigns at the head of the crusades built numerous fortified castles in the newly conquered regions. One of the most famous is the Krach des Chevaliers in Syria. Fort Ajloun is in present-day Jordan, as is Fort Shobak, named the Montreal Krach built by the first King of Jerusalem, Baudouin I. 

Fort Ajloun 

If most of the strongholds in the region were built by the Crusaders, the same is not true of Fort Ajloun. 

Fort Ajloun was built by a general of Saladin, first sultan of Egypt and Syria, of Kurdish origin. This general was called Izz al-Din Usama. The fort was built on the ruins of a Byzantine monastery dedicated to Saint John the Baptist, on a hill from where it was possible to control all the roads in the region. This monastery was destroyed during the Muslim conquest in the 7th century AD. 

In fact, the name of the fort "Ajloun" is said to be derived from the Arabic word "Gilead", which refers to the hilly region of northern Jordan where the fort is located, and is also mentioned in the Bible. This name may also have been influenced by the biblical name of the region, as there is a reference to the "Land of Gilead" in the Old Testament. 

Today, visitors to Fort Ajloun can still see the remains of the Byzantine monastery, including some of its walls and columns, which were incorporated into the structure of the fortress. The site bears witness to the region's rich and complex history, which has been shaped by a variety of cultures and civilizations over the centuries. 

The fort was built to control the Bedouin tribes likely to ally with the Crusaders. 

Fort Ajloun is one of the only fortifications built by the Ayyubid Muslims to protect their kingdom against Crusader incursions. 

The fortress dominated much of the northern Jordan Valley and controlled the communication routes between southern Jordan and Syria. An eminently strategic point. 

after the crusades 

Fort Ajloun lost its strategic importance after the military successes of the Ayyubids culminating in the capture of the Crusader fortress of Karak. 

The stronghold was granted to the King of Aleppo and Damascus and became an administrative center in the 13th century. 

Mongol invasions 

It would resume service during the Mongol invasions which partially destroyed it around 1260. It was restored after the victory of the Mamluks over the Mongols. 

Then the castle was used as a warehouse and sporadically during local wars. 

Current appearance 

Fort Ajloun suffered greatly from two earthquakes in 1837 and 1927.


Spoken comments in the film: 

Ajloun Fort in Jordan was built in the 12th century by Muslims. It is on a hill and the castle watched over three wadis descending to the Jordan Valley. It was the Ayyoubids who built it in the 12th century and enlarged it a century later by the Mamalouks.

Fort Ajloun, Fort Ajloun • Jordan

What's the weather like in Fort Ajloun?

Liens vers des pages apparentées

• Monuments •

Fort Ajloun • Fort Ajloun - Relique Historique du Moyen-Orient

about the place, Fort Ajloun:

Ajloun Fort in Jordan was built in the 12th century by Muslims. It is on a hill and the castle watched over three wadis descending to the Jordan Valley. It was the Ayyoubids who built it in the 12th century and enlarged it a century later by the Mamalouks.



 - YouTube video library - Desert Catharsis


Disclaimer: Despite its appropriateness, copyright issues prevent the use of jordanian traditional music in "Fort Ajloun, Muslim fortress • Jordan", hence the use of royalty-free music. Despite our careful selection, some might regret this decision, which is necessary to avoid potential lawsuits. Although difficult, this decision is the only viable solution.

the fort seen from a distance, from the outside, Fort Ajloun • Jordan

the fort seen from a distance, from the outside

the city and the countryside seen from the fort, Fort Ajloun • Jordan

the city and the countryside seen from the fort

inside the fort, Fort Ajloun • Jordan

inside the fort

mosaic in the fort, Fort Ajloun • Jordan

mosaic in the fort

Fort Ajloun, Jordanie

© 2020 - 2024 • Jean-Marie Putz, PutzProductions