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11. Featuring the King: Rituals of Coronation and Burial in the Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia

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Chapter Summary

In 1198, the coronation in Tarsus of Prince Lewon II as King Lewon I, raised the extant Armenian principalities of Cilicia to the status of a kingdom alongside the Latin kingdoms of Cyprus and Jerusalem. The rise of the Cilician kingdom implies a ceremonial framework for royal and aristocratic actions, although there is no evidence of a codified ceremonial followed throughout the duration of the kingdom. The ceremonial practices of the Cilician Armenians, a most efficient means of displaying power and identity, have not been hitherto the focus of a comprehensive study looking to the "when, how and why" of the coronations and other ritualized events in the court. Historians often record the death of important people and recount them in great detail, especially when these are related to heroic deeds, but they mention burial and mourning.

Keywords: Armenian kingdom; burial place; ceremonial practices; Cilicia; Jerusalem; religious ritual; royal coronation; Tarsus of Prince Lewon II



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