Fourth Crusades Map Assignment

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   In the 7th century AD, a Muslim Jihad had spread out of Arabia across the Mediterranean world, conquering about half of the Christian world, including the holy city of Jerusalem. The early Muslim rulers of this vast empire were relatively tolerant of Christianity and Judaism, which were seen as other Abrahamic faiths, preferable to Paganism under Islamic law. The Christians and Jews were thus given permission to practice their religion as long as they paid the Jizya, a special tax levied on non-Muslims.

   From the 7th to the 9th centuries, the Christian world was comparably weak and unable to recuperate any of the territories lost to the Muslims. However, by the 10th Century, the Christians began to recuperate and reclaim these lands. The first areas to be reconquered were the islands of the Mediterranean, owing to the Christian World's growing superiority in naval technology and expertise. Cyprus and Crete were recaptured by the Byzantines in the 10th century, and the islands of the Western Mediterranean: Sicily and Malta were reconquered by western Christian forces in the 11th Century. At the same time, the Christian reconquest of Spain began to gain momentum.

   At this time, the Seljuk Turks, a people that had originated in Central Asia and migrated into the Middle East, adopting the Islamic faith, began to conquer much of the Near East. The Seljuk Turks conquered much of Anatolia from the Byzantines and also Syria, Palestine, and Jerusalem from the Arabs. Under the Seljuk Turks, Christians began to be persecuted more and more for their beliefs. In 1095, the Byzantine Emperor Alexios I wrote a letter to Pope Urban II in Rome requesting military support from Western Europe against the new Muslim Menace: the Seljuk Turks. In his letter, Alexios I described in graphic detail how the Seljuk Turks were torturing Christian pilgrims in Jerusalem. Pope Urban II responded to the letter by calling upon Christian kings and knights all over Europe to wage a religious crusade to recapture the Holy Land from the Turks, beginning an epic 200 year struggle known today as the Crusades.

The First and Second Crusades

   During the First Crusade, the Christians successfully recaptured Jerusalem after a long siege. (see map 1) Some of the Muslim and Jewish population of the city was massacred. The sources do not agree on exactly how many were killed, but certainly the deaths were in the thousands. It should be noted that the massacre of the inhabitants of a city that refused to surrender was common practice in this era. The conquered territories of the First Crusade were divided into a set of Crusader States all along the coast of the Levant: the County of Edessa, the Principality of Antioch, the County of Tripoli, and most importantly, the Kingdom of Jerusalem (see map 2). However it was soon learnt that the hardest part of crusading was not capturing territory in the first place, but defending it in the long run against a patient enemy in foreign, unfamiliar lands. The first of the Crusader States to be retaken by Muslim forces was the County of Edessa, which was overrun by the Seljuk Turks in 1144, prompting a second crusade, whose aim was to capture the Seljuk capital at Damascus. (see map 3) The Second Crusade failed in this primary objective, nevertheless, the Turks were unable to gain any further leeway in capturing the other Crusader States.

Saladin's Recapture of Jerusalem

   In 1169, Saladin, a Kurdish general in the Seljuk army took control of Egypt. Saladin was a shrewd military tactician, in a series of campaigns he was able to defeat his former employer, the Seljuk Turks and take control of what was left of the Seljuk territories in the Near East, founding the Ayyubid Dynasty. The Crusader Kingdoms were now completely surrounded by a single Muslim Empire ruled by Saladin. In 1187, Saladin began a war with the Crusader states, defeating them at the Battle of Hattin, and recapturing Jerusalem and most of the Crusader territory. Only a number of castles and well fortified coastal cities (Tyre, Tripoli, and Antioch) were able to hold out against Saladin. (see map 4)

   Saladin has traditionally been viewed in the West as an unusually kind-hearted conqueror. The Koran specifies that Islamic soldiers are entitled to 4/5ths of all spoils of war procured during Jihad and the remaining 1/5th is to be taxed by the Muslim ruler to be used for governing and for distribution to the needy (Koran 8:41). Saladin's men considered the Western Christian inhabitants of Jerusalem, including the women and children, as part of the spoils and demanded that they be entitled to take them as slaves or to be used as hostages for ransom. Saladin freed his share of the captives and paid his men the ransom prices for some of the poorer captives using his own personal wealth, the vanquished Christian rulers of the city also paid for the release of some of the poorer captives. In this way, Saladin's men were placated, Islamic law was not violated, and many of the Christians were freed. However the money was not sufficient to free all of the Christian inhabitants and many were taken as slaves.

   News of the loss of Jerusalem back in Europe prompted the call for a Third Crusade. King Richard the Lionheart of England, Philip II of France, and Frederick I Barbarossa, Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire (mainly Germany) all headed the call. Frederick I was the first to set out, he opted for the overland route across Anatolia and had some early military successes along the way. However, whilst crossing the Saleph River he fell from his horse and died, his forces were now leaderless and most returned to Germany, only a handful carried on to Antioch. The French and English forces arrived by sea, first they seized control of Cyprus from the Byzantine Governor who had rebelled against the Byzantine Empire. They then landed in the Levant, successfully besieging Acre and then defeating the forces of Saladin at the Battle of Arsuf. (See map 5) The Christian forces now held the upper hand, however in the peace negotiations with Saladin, Richard the Lionheart chose not to demand the surrender of Jerusalem itself, but instead to insist that the Muslims allow all Christian pilgrims unhindered access to the City. Richard realized that a Christian Jerusalem would never be safe from future Muslim reprisals. His plan was for the Christians to concentrate on controlling the port cities on the coast of the Holy Land which could easily be re-supplied from the sea, owing to the superior naval power of the Christian World. From this coastal base, the Christians could insure that Christian pilgrims could access the city of Jerusalem relatively easily. (see map 6)

The Crusades against Egypt

   The aim of subsequent Crusades was not Jerusalem itself, but Egypt. Egypt was were the threat to Jerusalem really lied, the Crusaders figured that if they could quash the forces of Egypt once and for all, it would then be much easier to hold on to Jerusalem. A Fourth Crusade to conquer Egypt was planned, but never arrived due to infighting between the Western European Crusaders and a new Byzantine Emperor who had originally agreed to fund the Crusade but then reneged on the agreement. Both the Fifth and Seventh Crusades were successful at taking the Egyptian port city of Damietta, but then got bogged down dealing with disease and desertions before reaching the Egyptian Capital of Cairo. (See map 7) The Sixth Crusade involved no real fighting, instead the Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II was able to negotiate with the Egyptians to cede Jerusalem and sign a 10 year peace. Once the 10 year peace expired, Jerusalem fell to a Muslim force almost immediately.

The Franco-Mongol Alliance

   In the Mid-13th Century, the Middle East was rocked by waves of invasions from the Mongols of Central Asia. The Crusader states saw the Mongol invasions as an opportunity to defeat the Muslims once and for all, they entered into various alliances with these Mongol raiders known collectively as the Franco-Mongol Alliance. Some of the Mongol rulers had converted to Christianity and they saw the Muslims as a common enemy. Hulagu Khan, the Grandson of Genghis Khan, conquered Baghdad in 1258, and then swept into Syria conquering Damascus and Aleppo with assistance from some of the Christian Crusader states. However, eventually the Crusaders began to see the Mongols as a threat and ended their alliance, they even allowed the Egyptians to pass through their territory to meet the Mongol horde at the Battle of Ain Jalut in 1260, where Hulagu Khan was decisively defeated. (See map 7)

The End

   Once the Mongol threat was overcome, the Egyptians turned their attention back to ridding the Near East of the Crusaders once and for all. Led by Baibars, the Egyptians engaged on a merciless campaign into the crusader territories. On numerous occasions, Baibars promised the defenders of cities and castles that they would be let go after surrendering, only to be massacred or enslaved once the city gates were opened, some cities were completely destroyed. (See map 7) When Baibars captured the city of Antioch in 1268, he had 17,000 of the Christian population massacred. A few cities and castles were too well fortified for Baibars to capture and their location on the coast meant that they could be easily resupplied from the sea. Nevertheless, Europeans began to lose interest in the elusive goal of recapturing the Holy Land and popular support for paying the taxes necessary to sustain these last crusader strongholds quickly dwindled. One by one they were picked off by Muslim forces. The last three cities to be taken were Sidon, Tyre, and Acre in 1291 AD. Jerusalem would remain under Muslim rule until it fell under British Mandate in the Twentieth Century.


Paul Halsall

Class 15: Crusades and European Expansion

  • , Letter from Aymeric, patriarch of Antioch, to Louis VII of France.
I. Introduction The Crusading Movement - one of defining features of High Middle Ages. Sources - Many - Chronicles, Memoirs, Papal Documents, Feudal Documents. We are in to a new world compared to the earlier periods. What is a Crusade? - A Holy War?. Hard to define. Much Research. In a militarized and religious society - might seem natural. But in fact a lot more complicated than this. Let us try to answer this question by seeing what it was. II. European Expansion Until c. 1000 a chaotic situation in Europe. We already looked at:- -The political rebirth -Ecclesiastical revolution - a period of religious enthusiasm. Also a growing population -No plague -Less war -more resources with expansion of Land Europe still less `civilized' than Byzantium or Islam, but now strong and ready to expand. European imperialism - never stopped (?.. Note importance of military background of upper classes, and progressive Christianization of all classes. III. Christianity and Islam Main Battles had been in Byzantium By 11th century Byzantium was able to push its borders into Muslim Territory. But in Spain also, the collapse of the Caliphate in 1002 had allowed Christians to expand south. More in next class. Muslims in heartland not really aware of any threat, but Crusades were to condition Muslim and Christian relations for centuries. Crusade is a conflict of Muslims and Christians, but also more than that. It was Christians against all non-Christians. Jews and heretics also effected. IV. Normans Normandy - French and Feudal. Tight control by Dukes of Normandy - led many to seek fortunes elsewhere. One a pattern starts it is self perpetuating. That's why historians look at origins so much. England - conquered 1066 Southern Italy -Tancred de Hautville - a minor baron. Good example of younger sons heading off. -Eight went to Southern Italy in 1030a and 1040s - as mercenaries -lost of conflict between Byzantine cities, Lombard states and Italian republics. Robert Guiscard arrives 1047. Bandit leader. Then by 1059 Duke. Normans looked on with favor by Papacy. Vs the Empire 1060-90 - conquest of Sicily 1071 - Began to attack Byzantine Possessions - Took Bari. Bad time for Byzantines. Normans rule Sicily well - used Byzantine and Islamic forms. Normans very involved in Crusades. Crusades are part of purely political/booty expansion of feudal classes in Europe. But also more than that. V. Byzantium A. 11th Century Bureaucracy replaces a military state - it looked like Byzantium did not need its huge armies. B. 1071 - Mantzikert. Seljuqs Turcomans invade all of Anatolia C. Alexius Comenus 1081- Renovatio Expansion in Balkans and Anatolia Alexius possibly appealed to the Pope for military aid. Used Jerusalem as an attraction + relics. Did not want a Crusade: Had no idea what one was. Byzantine attitude to Jerusalem -Constantinople was the new Jerusalem as well as New Rome Crusades a reaction to perilous situation of Christians in the East. But more than that. VI. Fatamids Fatamids 969. Cairo. Attacks by Hakim on Christians 1021. Crusades are a defense of Jerusalem. VII. Jerusalem Real or not real - Symbolic importance. Pilgrimage in Europe: 1064-65 big German pilgrimage to Jerusalem. Raid on Mahdya in 1087 by Pisa - called a `pilgrimage'. Crusade to some extent incorporates ideas of pilgrimage But that's not all VIII. The Peace and Truce of God What I have described so far is lots of different elements that could come together to create a conflict situation. But a Crusade was not just a war, it was an ideology [DISCUSS} For Byzantines and Muslims it must have looked like a standard war, or at least plundering expeditions. But for the western fighters it had definite religious overtones. This is connected with the attempt by the Church to Control and Christianize the very strong feudal forces - and stop private warfare. Two movements in France [NB France has largest population and dominates crusade] sponsored by monasteries, particularly Cluny. Problem of lawless knights and private warfare. Church wanted peace, plus less attacks on it. Kings and high nobles wanted war to be their privilege The Peace of God -no war against holy places or people -POG aimed to put under God's protection the poor (who were defenseless., unarmed clerics, pilgrims, merchants, women, children, peasants. IE it defined combatants and non-combatants It defined the milites as a military class. Later on it tried to protect all Christians. -Began in late 10th century, but most effective in 11th. An episcopal more than a papal movement. The Gregorian councils and synods pushed it. The Truce of God Began in late 11th century (or 1127?. -A clerical ideology of war: Holy War and Holy Peace -no war on holy days - actually half the year Crusades effectively diverted private warfare, and were an expansion of peace efforts within Christendom. Gregory VII's idea of soldiers of Christ. [Gregory was fully part of feudal world view]. Idea of Christina Knighthood [To be expanded by St. Bernard]. Ideals of Just war and Holy war are important, and distinct Crusade includes ideas of peace within Christendom. IX. Urban II 1188-99 A Monk of Cluny. Gregorian Reform Crusades were led and encouraged by the Papacy. They were papal wars. But more than that X. The First Crusade A. Council at Clermont-Ferrand 1095 - Deus le volt! B. Crusading Indulgence -for remission of sins -New concept. Very popular. C. Response by 1096 Pope was surprised by response. He had offered no plan of action. 1. Popular Response Peter the Hermit and poor men 2. Noble Response Especially from Northern France, Normandy, Flanders, but also from Southern France - Perhaps 25,000 men Four Armies Southern France - led by papal legate and Count Raymond of Toulouse Northern France - led by Hugh or Vermandois, Count Robert of Flanders, Count Stephen-Henry of Blois, and Duke Robert of Normandy. Lorraine - led by Godfrey de Bouillon, Duke of Lower Lorraine (a supporter of Henry IV., his brother Baldwin Italy - led by Robert Guiscard's son Bohemund and Tancred 3. German Response 1096 Massive anti-Semitic attacks in Mainz, Koln etc. -effect of crusading on European Minorities. D. Journey - difficult - no provisions Destroyed a lot of Balkans. E. Constantinople Impressed by Alexius - who made leaders his vassals/douloi Alarmed at Norman presence F. In Anatolia Many killed at Nicea -Crusaders killed many Christians -Byzantine and Western hostility G. Antioch Got Bogged down. Tarfurs ate Muslims Finding of the Holy Lance - spurred on Army Had good luck - as Fatamids and Seljuqs were at war with each other. H. Jerusalem 1099 - July 15th - Massive killing I. The Kingdom of Jerusalem 1099-1291 No idea what they would do once they got there. Set up a `perfect' Feudal state - Assizes of Jerusalem - C13 See Map p. 180 It used to thought it had strong nobles and weak king. Now its known the king was strong for first 30 years. Also not perfect feudalism - the nobles lived in the towns. Many had left wives in Europe - and so could not pass on lands to legitimate heirs. Very little settlement. Set up a Latin Church structure - alienated the Greeks. Trade with Muslims - but little intellectual contact - which was more in Spain and Sicily J. Knights Hospitallers 1113 Knights Templars 1119 Small armies. Strong Castles - basis of security. XI. The End of the Crusading Movement? Continued to 1918? Allenby's troops in Jerusalem. Certainly throughout the Middle Ages. XII. European Expansion: The Later Crusades i. Introduction A. Summing up Crusades from last class: We talked mainly of the First Crusade in 1196-99 A Holy War - but that is not an adequate definition B. Summary [Q&A] Involved were varying concepts -Conflict of Christians and Muslims -Military adventures of the feudal classes, especially Normans. -The idea of Aid to eastern Christians, both those in the Holy land and Byzantium. -The idea of Pilgrimage to Jerusalem -Extension of the Church's ongoing attempt to control warfare as in Truce of God and Peace of God. -Papal blessing and indulgences C. All in all a heady mix of religious faith, religious symbols, and religious power, with secular adventurism. Once the idea got going it became an accepted part of medieval ideology. Only very late on did criticism start. Crusade defines much of European activity for the high middle ages. D. The crusades have also been seen as the first phase of European expansionism. This is the theme I want to explore in this class. Both by looking at the future of the Crusades to the Holy Land, and at other European Crusades In Spain, Eastern Europe and strangely enough in France. ii. Crusades to the Holy Land A. The Kingdom of Jerusalem B. The Second Crusade 1146-8 1. Fall of Edessa 2. St. Bernard of Clairvaux -Great mystical writer -Encourager of devotion to B.V.M -politically important because of his holiness 3. More attacks on Jews 4. The Crusade - Kings take over Louis VII, Conrad 5. Military Orders - promoted by St. Bernard to maintain kingdom of Jerusalem. Ultimate development of Milites Christi idea -Hospital 1113 -Temple 1119 - based on Cistercians C. The Third Crusade 1. 1187 - Saladin's Victory at Hattin fall of Jerusalem 2. The Crusade of Kings - the most Romantic? -Frederick Barbarossa (died in a ditch on the way. -Philip Augustus, new king of France -His sometime lover, Richard I the Lion Heart -Salah-al-din/Saladin. 3. Failure of Crusade Seen as a result on sin and antichrist 4. Conquest of Cyprus by Richard II New Latin base in the East D. The Kingdom of Acre Nobles, Castles - development of Military architecture E. Future Crusades to the East There were many more crusades. But they never quite made it to the Holy land. -Fourth destroyed the Byzantine Empire -Fifth Went to Egypt -Children's Crusade 1212 - led to slavery F. Reasons for Failure 1. Distance 2. Muslim Resurgence Beginning of cult of Jerusalem among Muslims This is the period when Christianity looses its hold in Syria and Iraq. 3. Size of Armies changes European ones remain small, but Asian ones grow big. Eventually the Mongols where to invade the area with thousands of troops - turned back at Ein Jalut in 1260 by the well equipped successor to Saladin, Sultan Baibars of Egypt. 4. Failure to Colonize -Number who went east was in fact quite small. -They live in the towns. Which were trading places. -Land cultivation continued by the original Christian and Muslim inhabitants -Few peasants went out - no reason to go -People did not go out on an adventure or pilgrimage to farm. -few women went. In short, the crusades became a small governing class in a basically Muslim/Arab Christian Country Lessons were taken to heart by modern Israelis. G. The Crusades and Europe They were not a success. But Europe did benefit in many ways -not by intellectual contact with the superior Islamic and Byzantine cultures - that took place in Spain/Sicily -But positive benefits in growth of trade - of which more in future class. -Architectural impact of Crusader castles. -New awareness of the outside world. -the Whole theme of Crusade as a motivator. H. But bear in mind the failure to colonize. Population is probably the key to what happened in the east - both its failures, and its successes (e.g. Castles.. iii. Spain A. Reconquista -Spain fell 711 -Kingdom of the Asturias & County of Barcelona -Until decline of Caliphate in early 11th century, no room for Christians to do anything. -Then they begin to develop a distinctively Spanish ideology of Reconquista: The idea that Muslims were in Spain illegitimately, and that it was a duty to `reconquer.' This is prior to Crusades. Has its own religious cult - Santiago de Compostella. B. Asturias Leon, Castile, Navarre, Catalonia/Aragon, [Portugal] States that could expand were the future. C. Process -Gradual move into Extremadura Helped by Muslim concentration in the South. -1085 - under Alfonso VI, Capture of Toledo, old Visigothic Capital (textbook wrong date on p. 171. -Period of stability: Alomohads and Almoravids -1212 Las Navas de Tolosa -South fall by 1260 -All except Granada which remains Muslim until 1492. -Then Spanish move on to Americas. D. Assimilation to Crusades -Repeat - this was not a Crusade in origin. Had Spanish origins. -But once crusades got started - a general similarity could obviously be seen -Popes said Spaniards should not go on Crusade, but stay and fight Muslims in Spain. -Crusade indulgences to people fighting in Spain. So, gradually Reconquista, although always keeping its own identity, becomes assimilated to crusades. -This is also helped by the influence of French knights who would come to Spain, which was much closer than the Holy land, to fulfill Crusade vows. -Spanish Religious Orders - Santiago de C., Calatrava -Also epic poetry - crusading literature if you like - was not set in the Holy land, but in the time of Charlemagne's attacks on Spain. E. Spanish Reconquista a Success At least in its own terms. Muslims probably not too happy. What was the difference? -Obviously - distance was not an issue, The area conquered was contiguous to the aggressive area. -Also Muslims in Spain were isolated. In fact when they received help from Morocco they could stand their ground fairly well. -But the biggest difference was the official policy of `repobulacion' -Spanish Monarchs took special care that the area they -conquered was settled. Spanish Towns -Now the land was not always suitable for arable farming - so the basis of settlement was towns. -Spain had no real feudal system to negate the development of towns. No noble titles either. -So towns were established all over the conquered areas Privileges - Fueros/Forums were given which gave the citizens a great deal of liberty to attract settlers. -Also led to early representative government in Spain as the reps. of the towns were invited to council with the kings from the 1250s on. Spain then was not only conquered, as the Holy land, but it was also made Spanish. -The critical aspect is population in my estimation. iv. Germans - The Drang Nach Ostern A. Both Crusades and Reconquista began militarily, even if results are due to population effects. In Germany population movement is prior in expansion. B. Germany HRE and Separate states. C. Population growth D. Method of Expansion From 10th century to 13th -Elbe - Oder - Vistula -Lay lords and bishops try to attract settlers -From all different areas of Germany + Flanders -Giving Peasants freedoms + Building defensible settlements -Germanic settlements through Eastern Europe and Russia E. Eastern Europe Slavs - Wends, Poles Lithuanians, Letts -Resistance - big battles 983, 1018, 1060. F. Northern Crusades -Germans on Crusade 1147 - Wendish Crusade -But they too bordered infidels -The Teutonic Knights -Expansion in Livonia and Prussia G. The big difference from Spain and Holy Land was that the Native inhabitants became Christian. -This meant they eventually could stand their ground and that the area of Germanization only extended so far. -Beyond a certain point the Germans remained in towns, but not in the countryside. H. Germanization of Baltic area - continued until 1945. Combination of political control and population. v. Albigensian Crusade Brief mention as I will discuss it under heresy. But the notion of Crusades other than in the Holy Land and against others than Muslims proved attractive - in fact it possibly sapped the vitality of the crusade in the East. It was most dramatic in its use in 1209 against Cathar heretics in the South of France. This was not exactly expansion of Europe, but it was an expansion of the political control of the French kings and of the Northern French aristocracy over the South. vi. Summation By the end of 1250, Western Europe was larger -not in the Holy land -In Spain and Germany and Sicily -also Scandinavian expansion in Iceland and Greenland -A dramatic indication of the `rebirth' after 1050.

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© Paul Halsall, 1996.

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