The importance of the Knights Hospitaller in the conquest of Balansiya

Here we show the oldest note that we found in San Juan of the Hospital. Of course, at this juncture the church did not exist, but it is the prelude to this, since it is the time when the conquest of the city is planned, and according to Book of Acts, the king is convinced by a hospitable.

Throughout the Late Middle Ages, great territorial conquests of Christianity took place in the medieval West. (Toledo in 1085, Saragossa in 1118, Tortoise 1148 majorca in 1229 or Sevilla in 1248) in which kings and nobles together with the support of military orders, played a key role. This was the case of the Order of Saint John of Jerusalem which, as it appears in The Book of Facts of James I, played a crucial role in the conquest of the city of Valencia de 1238. Your Lieutenant Prior, Hugo de Forcalquer, He met together with Blasco de Alagón and Jaime I in the castle of Alcañiz to draw up the road map that should be followed in the advance towards the south through the eastern area with the aim of conquering Balansiya.

JAMES I, Book of facts, 127. (Ed. by Antoni Ferrando; Vicent J- Escartí. Valencia: Alfonso the Magnanimous Institution, 2008)

  1. How the master of the Hospital and don Blasco d'Alagó proposed to the king the conquest of the king of the kingdom of Valencia.

 And we were in our kingdom, in Aragon, entertaining and resting. And we were in Alcanyís, and the Master of the Hospital and Don Blasco d'Alagó were with us; and they both came into our presence, on a roof and, while we were comforting each other and talking, the master of the Hospital, n'Hug of Forcalquer, took the floor, and said:

-sir, since God has guided you so well in the conquest of Majorca and those islands, wouldn't you start, and us, something from here, in this kingdom of Valencia, which has always been the face and border of your lineage, and we have always tried to conquer it and we have not been able to win it? For what, and may God help me, it would be good if we thought about it, since we are here in front of you; and Don Blasco knows more about it than any other man in the world, and he should tell you which place in that land seems most appropriate for you to enter, and we take it.

And Don Blasco d'Alagó answered:

-I will clearly tell the king everything I know about it and that it will be profitable for him. And since you want, teacher, what about it, I will talk about it.

And we asked him to tell us where he thought we could first enter the kingdom of Valencia.

Book of facts. fol 62r. 1619. University Library of Barcelona. Miniature where the meeting undertaken in the castle of Alcañiz is represented in which Hugo de Folcalquier (on his knees and in sanjuanista attire) and Blasco de Alagon, they propose to Jaime I the conquest of Valencia.

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