Early Life

Drest II, King of Jerusalem
Drest Mac Drest
King of Jerusalem, Defender of the Holy Land

Reign 1119-1135
Predecessor Drest I
Successor Constantine I
Consort Zoe Kommenos
Spouse Zoe Kommenos
Issue Constantine I

Baldwin, Prince of Damascus Justinian, Prince of Acre

House House of Moray
Father Drest I
Mother Doada
Born 1095
Inverness, Moray
Died 1135
Burial Church of the Holy Sepulchre
Religion Catholicism
The eldest son of King Drest the Great of Jerusalem, Drest II was born in 1095 in Inverness, Moray, Scotland. His earliest years were spent within his grandfather's kingdom, learning how to walk, talk and write, his father became King of Jerusalem in 1099, and Drest alongside his mother and siblings arrived in Jerusalem itself in the mid 1100s, where they were welcomed with great pomp and ceremony.

As the heir to a new Kingdom, Drest was taken on a tour of the lands that he would one day inherit, whilst also being very protected whilst on these tours. Even at a young age, Drest showed a penchant for learning, similar to his grandfather King Macbeatha, and spent long hours in the libraries of the palace of Jerusalem,a as well as in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. He also demonstrated some keen skill with a sword and axe, and was part of his father's campaigns in Syria from around 1110.

In order to settle a dispute between his father and the Byzantine Emperor, he married the emperor's daughter Zoe in 1112, and as such took her on campaign with him wherever he went for the next few years. He was one of the main advocates for a campaign into Egypt, and was most disheartened when his father abandoned those plans in 1117 due to ill health.


Following his father's death and his ascension as King of Jerusalem, and head of the Holy Land, Drest began planning for a campaign into Egypt, however, revolts in the former Emirate of Damascus, forced him to scrap the invasion plans. The revolts were crushed and Drest's son Baldwin was named nominal Prince of Damascus, though he would not assume actual control of the region until after his father's death. Further rebellions were prominent in Aleppo as well as in Harran, where the governors had been overthrown, Drest crushed these revolts and placed what he described in his journals as 'Good Christian Men' and as such left them to their own devices.

When a revolt led by a muslim man named Ahmed sprouted up in Tripoli, Drest personally led the army that defeated the man and destroyed muslim settlement there, killing every man, woman and child, earning Drest the name 'The Butcher,' Aid from the Venetians saw them gain further trade concessions from Drest, though the local nobility and the settlers were increasingly growing bitter at this favour shown to foreigners as it were. However, Drest managed to pacify these nobles by taking them on a campaign that would expand the borders of the Crusader Kingdoms right up to the western bank of the Euphrates, further reducing the power of the Seljuk Empire.

Finally, not happy with having expanded his borders, Drest planned and executed an invasion of Northern Egypt, where after raiding and sacking up and down the Sinai, he struck fear into the heart of the Fatimids, and as such returned home with a lot of loot and plunder, his reputation greatly enhanced. Following this, Drest spent the rest of his reign travelling the various domains under his control, and putting down any unrest where it originated from. He invested his son Constantine as Prince of Haifa, and gave some power to him. He retained full control over the former emirate of Damascus until his death in 1135.


Drest II died in 1135, after suffering a bout of what is now thought to be cholera. He was aged 40, the Kingdom of Jerusalem and the Crusader states were greatly strengthened during his reign and he left a stable Kingdom for his son and successor Constantine.

Marriage and Issue

In 1112 he married Zoe Kommenos, daughter of the Byzantine emperor, their relationship was cordial and they had three sons.

Constantine I (1113-1175)

Baldwin, Prince of Damascus (1116-1155)

Justinian, Prince of Acre (1120-1180)

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