Wednesday, May 18, 2011
The Christians did not want this because Jerusalem contained Christ’s tomb and pieces of the true cross, the one he was crucified on. The Christians also did not like the fact that they were being persecuted. So a man named Alexius wrote a letter to the pope at the time. The pope’s name was Urban II and the letter was asking for help in capturing Jerusalem back and stopping the persecution of Christians. Urban II said he would help and he’d bring help.
The Crusades were some pretty famous wars between Christians and Muslims. These battles started during the medieval era when Christians traveled to Jerusalem for holidays. At the time the area was governed by the Byzantine Empire, but the empire was losing land to the Turks and Arabs. These two groups were Islamic and when they gained Jerusalem the Muslims did not want the Christians going to the city. So basically the Muslims didn’t want their religion destroyed by Christians. To stop the Christians from going to Jerusalem the Muslims stated persecuting them.
The byzantine people were glad. One, the pope would bring help and large groups of soldiers. Two, they would get Jerusalem back. But the crusade did not go as planned because the army was ill prepared and didn't have much organization. This army was quickly defeated by the Seljuk, a Muslim group in Anatolia. The next attack on the Muslims was more planned and prepared. The army was divided among the leaders, for example Raymond of Saint Gillies led the Provencal knights. The army went to Constantinople where they were soon sent to Anatolia. The crusaders soon captured the city of Dorylaeum giving the Byzantine Empire control of western Anatolia. Then the army conquered Antioch in Anatolia. Finally the army marched to Jerusalem where they regained the city in July 1099.
The two sides had different reasons for fighting. The Christians wanted the Holy Land or Jerusalem. Jerusalem had been lost from the Byzantine Empire because of the invading Turks. Jerusalem was important to the Christians because it held Jesus' tomb. At first the Turks and Arabs wanted more land so they took the land of Jerusalem. Since the Turks and Arabs were Muslims they did not like Christians in the city. So they persecuted them in Jerusalem and anywhere else they could find them. This led to the first crusade. Then when the Christians regained Jerusalem the Muslims didn't want the Christians there at all, so they basically kept fighting back until this led to the second crusade.
The fighting continued throughout the years. The crusades lasted about 200 years and the Christians just didn't fight the Muslims. They fought with Egypt, non-Christians, the Muslims in Spain and more. Sadly all the land won in the first crusade fell under Muslim control. It looks like the Christians really didn't like any other religion to interfere with their way of life. These were the people involved in the crusades.
The crusades lasted many years almost 200. The Christians also had crusades with other lands like Egypt. The one thing that each had in common is that they were against Muslim countries and territories. So apparently the Christians did not give up on crushing the Muslims. The second and third crusades are the ones I will talk about.
The French had a unique way of warfare. They used a weapon called Francisca; it was an ax that could be thrown. The French used common weapons to such as swords, shields and javelin. As you can see the styles of weapons were the same in most territories. These were some of the weapons used in medieval Europe.
The sixth and seventh crusades were not good ones for the remaining crusaders. The two really big groups of remaining crusaders were the French and English. The sixth crusade is sometimes referred to as the emperor Frederick II crusade because it mostly involved him. This crusade wasn't a battle it was a diplomatic negotiation between Frederick and the courts of Egypt and Sicily. What they were negotiating about was access to Jerusalem and they got the access they wanted. After Frederick got the access he decided to make himself the king of Jerusalem. This didn't fly very well with the Christians and people who lived there. As a result the city went to civil war. Crusades from Thibault IV of Champagne-Navarre and king Henry III of England straighten things out. The seventh crusade was mostly king Louis IX fight against Egypt. He failed to conquer Egypt because he was defeated and imprisoned. After his release he went to Acre where he died.