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The Crusades
Jerusalem – one of the five principal sees of the
early Christian Church
680 – captured by Muslims
Jews and Christians: “people of the book”
Dhimmi restrictions
Importance of Pilgrimages
Jerusalem: site of Jesus’s last days, execution
and burial
Source for relic trade
Byzantine crisis, 1080s
Alexios Komnenos
Loss of Anatolia: breadbasket, population
center and major source of revenue for
New Emperor, Alexios Komnenos (r. 1081 1118), able leader, shrewd politician – looks to
reverse losses
Muslim caliphate: Byzantines had an
equilibrium, but now destroyed
Slavic nations: enemies more than friends
Pope and Western Christians: troubled
Alexios: dramatic shift – sends delegation to
Popes Gregory VII and Urban II for help
Reversal of usual Papal-Imperial
relationship from centuries before
Emperor asking Pope for help, despite all
of the disagreements
Later Crusades: Fourth Crusade,
Albigensian Crusade
Scene of the crusader sack of Constantinople from a fourteenth-century Venetian chronicle
 “The Crusades” continued for several centuries after
the First Crusade was launched; these conflicts differ
from other wars primarily by papal involvement at
inception, the crusade indulgence and the crusade vow
taken by would-be holy warriors.
 Later crusades generally have the Holy Land as their
strategic target and were fought against Muslims, but
none were as militarily successful as the first. Some
crusades were fought against the Byzantines (Fourth
Crusade), heretics in Europe (Albigensian Crusade),
the pope’s political enemies (the “Italian Crusades,” or
crusade against Aragon), or even individual families
(the crusade against the Colonna family).
The Crusader States
Outremer: French for “land overseas”
Small states in the Near East set up by
armies of the First Crusade and
reinforced intermittently by later
crusaders; eventually all are taken back
by Muslims
County of Edessa (founded by Baldwin
of Boulogne, 1098-1149)
Principality of Antioch (Bohemund of
Taranto, 1098-1268)
Kingdom of Jerusalem (1099 to loss of
Jerusalem in 1187; kingdom continues at
Acre until 1291; founded by Raymond IV
of Toulouse and Godfrey of Bouillon;
Godfrey becomes first ruler)
County of Tripoli (1102-1289; Raymond
IV of Toulouse and his son Bertrand)
Pope Innocent III
Lotario dei Segni, Pope
from 1198-1216
Regarded as one of the
most powerful popes of the
Middle Ages
Influential in reformulation
of canon law (church law),
office of the papacy,
canonization of saints,
inquisitorial process, and
definition/approach to
Refashioned formulation of
Crusade to become a
weapon of the papacy;
oversaw crusades in Middle
East, Spain, S. Italy, S.
France, Northern Europe
The Fourth Crusade (1202-4)
"O City, City, eye of all cities, universal boast, supramundane wonder, nurse of
churches, leader of the faith, guide of Orthodoxy, beloved topic of orations, the
abode of every good thing! Oh City, that hast drunk at the hand of the Lord the
cup of his fury! O City, consumed by fire...”
– Niketas Choniates (Harry J. Magoulias, trans.)
The Albigensian Crusade (1209-29)
1208: Innocent III sends papal legate Pierre
de Castelnou to excommunicate
Count Raymond VI of Toulouse for
harboring heretics; Pierre dies under
suspicious circumstances
Innocent declares crusade against heretics
of Languedoc and the nobles who
protected them; immediately
dispossesses southern nobility (Counts
of Toulouse and Trencavel families)
and invites northern French crusaders
to seize lands
Violence and brutality at battles of
Carcassone (1209), Beziers (1209),
Muret (1213)
Treaty in 1229, but fighting continues until
Scene of Crusaders attacking Cathars from a fourteenth-century
William of Tudela: records account from
perspective of Counts of Toulouse
The Military Orders
Krak des Chevaliers, Syria
Hospitaller Castle, 1142-1271
Knights Hospitaller: Knights of the Hospital of St. John (1099, to protect pilgrims
traveling to Jerusalem)
Knights Templar: Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon
(endorsed in 1129, but suppressed 1307-1312)
Iberian orders:Order of Calatrava, Order of Santiago
Baltic orders: Teutonic Knights, Brothers of the Sword
Next Class
 Life of the Nobility
 Read Marie de France, Eliduc
 Think about the different ways this source might help
us understand the medieval nobility: Come to class
with prepared with one interpretive question for
discussion on Thursday.