The Crusades Essay

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"The Crusades: series of wars by Western European Christians to recapture the Holy Land from the Muslims." (Encarta "Crusades") The Crusades first began in 1096 and ended in the late 13th century. The term Crusade originally meant that the European's would use all their efforts to regain the power from the Muslims. They wanted to retake the city of Jerusalem, which was holy to Christians because that's where the crucifixion of Jesus Christ occurred. Europeans later used it to allocate any military efforts against non-Christians. The Crusaders also created feudal states in the Near East. The Crusades played an important role of European expansion and colonialism. "They mark the first time Western Christendom undertook a military initiative…show more content…
The pope was led by his position as the spiritual head of Western Europe, by the weakness of the rulers in Germany (the Holy Roman Empire) or France who could take over the effort, and by a call for help from the Byzantine emperor, Alexius I. These factors were perfect causes, and at the same time, it made sense for the call of a Crusade. The first crusade is said to fall in two parts. Part One: "A crusade for the people." And Part Two: a crusade for the princes." In any case, Urban's speech was well known to thousands of people of all classes. It was the perfect time and place for his speech. It is like when things go bad in today's society and someone comes along and says, "We should do something about it." Everybody would agree and make an effort to play a role in it. The First Crusade, which began in 1096, was successful. Their main goal was to free Jerusalem and they did it. After the successful crusade it made Western Christian military in the Near East be dominant for almost 200 years. The Crusaders called this area Outremer, French for "beyond the seas." The First Crusade was the question of its time. It attracted no European kings or major nobles. It drew mainly lesser barons and their followers. "They came primarily from the lands of French culture and language, which is why Westerners in Outremer were referred to as Franks."(Krey, 21) The Crusaders faced many obstacles. "They had no obvious or
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