Walter Scott, The Talisman, the Crusades, Richard I of England and Saladin: Myths, Legends and History
by Ibn Warraq
Part 1 / Part 2 / Part 3 / Part 4 / Part 5 / Part 6 / Part 7 / Part 8 / Part 9 / Part 10 / Part 11 / Part 12 / Part 13 / Part 14 / Part 15 / Part 16 / Part 17 / Part 18 / Part 19 / Part 20 / Part 21 / Part 22 / Part 23 / Part 24 / Part 25 / Part 26 / Part 27 / Part 28 / Part 29 / Part 30 / Part 31 / Part 32 / Part 33 / Part 34 / Part 35
Madelung is very skeptical of Gibb’s reliance on Bahā’ al-Dīn and ‘Imād al-Dīn which “is generally justified as far as their account of events is concerned for they had the advantage of being eye witnesses. But does this mean that they are exempt from the pervading partisan commitment characteristic of the historiography of this age? ‘Imād al-Dīn’s history of the Saljūqs is known to conceal a strong Shāfi‘ite bias. There is good reason to think that his accounts of Saladin’s career, though generally accurate, does at times contain less than the full truth. The accounts of Ibn Abī Ṭayyi’ and Ibn al-Athīr, though the latter is manifestly often inaccurate in factual reports, deserve serious consideration as a corrective taking into account their particular bias.”
Madelung argues that “Gibb in relying solely on ‘Imād al-Dīn and Bahā’ al-Dīn failed to undertsand the roots and nature of Saladin’s conflict with Nūr al-Dīn and his Zangid heirs.” Then Madelung endorses Ehrenkreutz whose “criticism of this [i.e. Gibb’s] interpretation appears basically sound”. Madelung does take issue with some of Ehrenkreutz’s own interpretations, but, concludes, “Despite such flaws, Ehrenkreutz’s book deserves full credit for having put the biography of Saladin on a realistic historical basis”.
C.3.5 OTHER REVIEWS OF EHRENKREUTZ’S WORK.
Professor Michael Dols of California State University wrote , “Scholarly and immensely thorough, Professor Ehrenkreutz’s work is a persuasive revision of the interpretation of Saladin presented primarily by Stanley Lane-Poole and Sir Hamilton Gibb”. Dols places himself between the two poles: Saladin was neither so naïve as Gibb as would have us believe nor as unscrupulous as Ehrenkreutz contends.
Dr Harris Nierman (Flushing, New York), an expert on the Crusades and Medieval Islam wrote  that Ehrenkreutz’s work was welcome and a much needed corrective to Gibb (Lane-Poole). He also thinks Ehrenkreutz thesis was anticipated by Emanuel Sivan in his L’Islam et la croisade: Idéologie et propagande dans les réactions musulmanes aux croisades (1969) but concludes : "Professor Ehrenkreutz’s work both revises our conception of Saladin and propounds a meaningful thesis concerning the sultan’s role in Egyptian history. This is a highly readable portrait that should become familiar to all those interested in Middle Eastern or medieval history”.
 Michael W.Dols. Review of Andrew S. Ehrenkreutz’s Saladin in International Journal of Middle East Studies, Vol. 4, No 4 (Oct.. 1973), pp. 489-491.
 Harris Nierman. Review of: Saladin by Andrew S. Ehrenkreutz; Hamilton Gibb. The Life of Saladin from the works of ‘Imād ad-Dīn and Bahā’ ad-Dīn in The American Historical Review, Vol. 79, No. 2 (Apr.,1974) pp. 501-502.
To be continued.