The siege of Jerusalem in 1187 began on the 20th of September and lasted until the 2nd of October when the city was surrendered by Balian of Ibelin and handed over to Saladin. Balian had discovered Jerusalem in a dire situation with less than 14 knights in the city. Balian rapidly knighted 60 squires and started stockpiling food for the coming siege.

Saladin offered generous terms to those holding the city in the hope of taking it bloodlessly. Those inside refused Saladin’s offer. Saladin used archers to pepper the ramparts and siege towers to assault the walls, Saladin’s forces took heavy losses whilst the defenders took very few.

Undermining caused a part of the wall to collapse on the 29th of September. Balian offered the surrender of the city, Saladin demanded an unconditional surrender, at which the crusader threatened to destroy the city’s holy places after some negotiation they were able to come to terms

The Crusaders were to unconditionally surrender, 7,000 Christians would be freed for the sum of 30,000 dinars.