Revised Regesta Regni Hierosolymitani (RRR) document number 356 details how Cecilia, Countess of Tripoli, relinquished her garden and fields to Galterio of Margat in 1137. This transaction, written in Latin and executed in Tripoli, is quite short – only three lines. Cecilia (1097-1145), was the daughter of King Philip I of Francia (c. 1052-1108) and Bertrade de Montfort (c. 1070-1117). She was married to Tancred, Prince of Galilee (c. 1075-1112) in 1106. On his deathbed, Tancred then betrothed her to Pons, Count of Tripoli, who ruled the county from 1112-1137.
This document was included in Inventaire de pièces de Terre Sainte de l’Ordre de l’Hopital published in 1895 by Joseph-Marie Delaville Le Roulx. According to Delaville Le Roulx, this document was originally maintained by the Order of Knights of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem, and as such, its transmission to the nineteenth century follows the story of the Hospitallers. When the Kingdom of Jerusalem fell in 1291, the Hospitallers first transferred to Cyprus, then to Rhodes in 1310, and finally to Malta in 1530. In the early eighteenth century, one of the Order’s archivists, Jean Raybaud, put together a listing of three hundred seventy-eight charters which had originally come from the Holy Land called Inventaire des chartes de Syrie, which was held in the archives départementales des Bouches-du-Rhône in Marseille. It is unclear how these charters made their way to Marseille (as opposed to directly to Malta) or for how long they were there. The Order’s Grand Priory of Saint-Gilles was founded in the early twelfth century in Arles, which is about ninety kilometers northwest of Marseille. It is this priory in which Jean Raybaud was the archivist. Marseille, situated on the coast, was a very significant port and waystation for any travel throughout the Mediterranean region. Thus, it would be easy to transport documents to and from Marseille. Unfortunately, it is unclear if the original of this transaction is extant today.
The recording of this property highlights the activities of women in the Latin East, the significant relationship between the secular lords and the military orders, and the activities of those who belonged to the Hospitallers. It concretely demonstrates the ability of women to hold land in Tripoli as well as the exercise of agency by a countess in the twelfth century. After the death of her husband, she relinquished possession of her garden and a field to her chamberlain. The wording of the document shows that the property was owned by Cecilia – not the count of Tripoli.
The intended use of the property also sheds light into the relationship between the ruling house of Tripoli and the Hospitallers: “in quo milites usu lancearum exercentur.” The present tense of “exercentur” indicates that the soldiers were already using the property for this purpose thus demonstrating that the Hospitallers’ close relationship with the lords of Tripoli. We can also see from this document how the soldiers trained and their equipment. Clearly by giving the property, she believed that the garden and field were better served for the training of the military order.
 Reinhold Röhricht, Regesta Regni Hierosolymitani (MXCVII-MCCXCI) Additamentum, vol. 2, 2 vols. (New York: Burt Franklin, 1960), 13. Translation mine:
Caecilia, vidua Pontii, comitis Tripolitani, et Raymundus II filius camerario G(alterio) de Margato hortum et campum, in quo milites usu lancearum exercentur, concedit.
Cecilia, widow of Pons, count of Tripoli, and Raymond II, (her) son, relinquishes a garden and field, in which soldiers are trained in the use of lances, to Galterio of Margat.
Latin was widely used as the language to record property transactions in the Middle Ages. Unfortunately, there is no indication of witnesses or of the scribe who wrote this particular transaction. However, scribes from this period and location were usually clerics, who were trained in classical Latin.
 Kevin James Lewis, The Counts of Tripoli and Lebanon in the Twelfth Century: Sons of Saint-Gilles (New York: Routledge, 2017), 82. Cecilia was quite connected in both Western Europe and the Latin East. As she was of Capetian royalty, she was the half-sister of King Louis VI and Constance, who was married to Bohemond I, Prince of Antioch. She was also the half-sister of King Fulk of Jerusalem and former Count of Anjou, through their mother.
 William of Tyre and R. B. C. Huygens, Chronicon, 2 vols., Corpus Christianorum Continuatio Mediaevalis 63-63A (Turnhout: Brepols Publishers, 1986), vol. 1 p. 522.
 Joseph-Marie Delaville Le Roulx, Inventaire de pièces de Terre Sainte de l’ordre de l’Hopital (Paris: Leroux, 1895), 13, no. 23.
 The Hospitallers, as they were commonly called, started as a hospice caring for pilgrims in the Holy Land prior to the First Crusade in 1095 and eventually became a military order with a significant presence in the Latin East and Western Europe. For more on the Hospitallers refer to Jonathan Riley-Smith, The Knights Hopsitaller in the Levant, c. 1070-1309 (Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan, 2012).
Additionally, the county of Tripoli increasingly relied on the Hospitallers to help defend its territory. In the 1140s, Raymond II (son of Cecilia) granted a significant amount of land to the order, including the fortress we know today as the Crac des Chevaliers. See Lewis, The Counts of Tripoli, 143-147.
Given this relationship between the county of Tripoli and the Hospitallers, it would be reasonable that the Order maintained many of the documents relating to the county.
 I was not able to find a digitized copy of this inventory in my search through the archives’ online platform (https://www.archives13.fr/). It is unclear whether this is still extant at this site or if it too has been lost since Delaville Le Roulx saw it in the late nineteenth century.
 Delaville Le Roulx, Inventaire de pièces de Terre Sainte, 1-8.
 This probably means that Galterio was someone close to her, in her service. Based on the description “de Margato,” he may have been from Margat (Marqab), which was situated in the southern edge of the Principality of Antioch, about 90 kilometers north of the city of Tripoli. Interestingly, the castle at Margat was captured by Tancred, Cecilia’s first husband, sometime after their marriage. Perhaps Galterio was in service to Cecilia since her time at Antioch. Margat castle was controlled by the Mazoirs, a baronial family, by the 1140s. The family then sold it to the Hospitallers in 1186. See Hugh Kennedy, Crusader Castles (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994) for more information on Margat castle.
Written by Carmeliz Ramas-Fisk, MA student Medieval Studes, Fordham University