Ecumenical mysticism: On conversion in the eastern tradition of ordene de chevalerie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Historians celebrate the Old French Ordene de Chevalerie as an important landmark in the history of French nobility. The version of Ordene that most scholars have studied showcases Saladin's interest in Christian chivalry but stops short of his actual dubbing. An often-neglected prose recension of this tale that first appeared in an oriental history of Outremer goes a step further, imagining the sultan to have truly become a knight "in the Christian fashion."This version of the story, I argue, portrays Christian dubbing not only as a ceremony through which young aristocrats were admitted into a society of warriors, but also as an instrument for spiritual ascent that non-Christians could experience without renouncing their own faith. As such, the story echoes the widespread near-eastern trope of ecumenical mysticism, in which members of various faiths were seen to partake in mystical practices that belonged to neighboring traditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165-195
Number of pages31
JournalMedieval Encounters
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2021


  • Chivalry
  • Crusades
  • Inter-religious encounters
  • Mediterranean
  • Mysticism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Language and Linguistics
  • History
  • Religious studies
  • Linguistics and Language


Dive into the research topics of 'Ecumenical mysticism: On conversion in the eastern tradition of ordene de chevalerie'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this