Carmelite Chronicles
Post-victory of Saladin at Hattin

May 7, 2012 |

It was The victory of Saladin at Hattin in 1187 put the quietus on religious life, cenobitical and eremitical, in Palestine. So After Hattin, the eremitical life in the open countryside became difficult, if not impossible, for Latins. One place remained where hermits might follow their vocation undisturbed: Mount Carmel until the end of the kingdom lay within the sphere of Frankish power.

Saladin and Guy of Lusignan after Battle of Hattin

Carmel offered an ideal setting for retirement and reflection. Its rugged slopes, dense with vegetation; its remote valleys and wide views over the blue Mediterranean or the hills of Galilee, beckon to prayer and contemplation.

From The Mirror of Carmel by Joachim Smet, O. Carm.

Fr. Joachim Smet O. Carm.
Fr. Joachim Smet, O.Carm. (1915-2011) was one of the leading historians of the Carmelite Order. In addition to being a founding member and President of the Institutum Carmelitanum in Rome and editor of Carmelus, a journal of Carmelite Studies, Fr. Joachim was a gifted writer. he is well-known for his four-volume work The Carmelites and his Life of Saint Peter Thomas. Among his other works: Familiar Matter of Today-Poems (2007), The Mirror of Carmel: A Brief History of the Carmelite Order, (2011), various publications on Carmelite Nuns, Carmelite Liturgy, Carmelite Libraries of Spain and Portugal and the Carmelites of Medieval England.
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