An Analysis Of Pope Innocent IV

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This source is an excerpt from a letter from Pope Innocent IV to King henry III of England on the 23rd January 1245, shortly after the sacking of Jerusalem by Khwarezmian forces in the same year. When a Pope traditionally launches a crusade it is accompanied with excitatoria, formal letters appealing to nobility and kings for contribution to the forthcoming campaign. Although this letter was intended for the English king, Peter Jackson implies that the missing letter to King Louis IX would have almost have been identical concerning its content, language and the overarching appeal for the crusade to respond to the sacking of Jerusalem at the hands of the Khwarezmians. Discussion on finances and indulgences for the crusade is mentioned in the…show more content…
He immediately found himself in a difficult position as pope, with numerous issues arising, such as the hostility escalating between the Holy Roman Emperor and the papacy, the increase of Islamic incursions into the Holy Land and of course the Mongol invasion of Europe. There was indeed prior warning of the defensive vulnerability of the Kingdom of Jerusalem, as Pope Innocent IV received a letter complaining that there were only one hundred pilgrim knights defending the city, and more reinforcements from Western Europe was needed for protection. Although this may have been note by the newly appointed Pope, the struggle with the Holy Roman Emperor through the continuation of Pope Gregory IX’s policy against Frederick II may have overshadowed this plea from the Holy Land. In fact, Pope Innocent IV’s position was so untenable in Rome due to the Emperor’s actions to increase dissent, that he fled to Lyon and immediately set about organising the Council of Lyon for 1245. His letter to Henry III was part of an effort from his base in Lyon to call for a crusade in reaction to the sacking of Jerusalem by the Khwarezmians, but he struggled to garner much support for the crusade due to the internal struggles within Europe, with only King Louis IX fully committed to the campaign. The relationship between Pope Innocent IV and King Henry III is one of note, as since the ties between Rome and the English King were established early through the papal support given to Henry at the end of the Baron’s war. The papacy desperately needed political allies due to the increasing threat posed by the military might of the Holy Roman Emperor and Henry II could be said to be one of them. Although the papacy could find respite through their relationship between the King of France and King of England respectively, the relationship between the two kingdoms was strenuous. A crusade
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