Wed. Sept. 14: Professor Steven Bednarski:
27 November 1095:
"'God Wills It!' The Origins of the Crusades, Holy War, and the so-called 'Clash of
How the Battle Cry of the Crusades Shook the World:
We’ve heard a lot in the last 10 years about crusades.Am politicians and other unwisely invoke
the term crusade or holy war in order to justify war efforts in the Middle East. People often do it
incorrectly. Crusading is something fundamentally medieval.
On NOv 27th 1095 - Pop urban II announced the ﬁrst crusade he shook the world.
Began to preach the ﬁrst crusade in order to reclaim the holy land from the Turks. Egypt, Israel,
Palestine, Jordan. One way his speech shook the world is that it began 100s of years of Christian
Crusades - Spain, South of France, and elsewhere. The image of the crusade today is linked to
war in the mid east, it happened over and over again.
II. on a spectacular day in 1095 P. UII gave his speech.As a young man he became a monk at
Clooney. He became interested in reforming the lax christian tendencies. He was elected
pope.As the turks conquered the Muslims, they took on the their religion. The strong turkish
army posed a threat to Byzantine Emp. In 1071 the conquered the Byzantine empire. The
mostly christian Byz. Emp entered into the hands of the Muslim Turks. The defeat at
Manzikert led to a brief struggle. Emperor sends out the cry for help to European Christians.
Pope Urban is the one that enters the crowd. He takes it upon himself and makes a papal call
for assistance to Christians in the EAST. ByzEmp wanted soldiers, Pope wanted a political
victory. Neither man gets exactly what they want. Immediately peasents answered the call and
were slaughtered by the professional Turkish army. In 1096 the French Nobility begins
organizing for war answering the call of Pope Urban. They arrive in the MId East in the
middle of a power vacuum. The were in the right place at the right time and their presence
cause the divided enemy to crumble. They take Jeruselem in 1099. The set out for the ﬁrst 2
time 4 crusader states: The Crusader States of Outremer. The land across the sea. Urban
couldn’t have known that his ﬁrst crusade was launching the ﬁrst european colonization
experiment. 1000’s of white europeans travel to the middle east. They develop a hybrid
culture. The land is different from Europe but connected to it. When Euro’s ﬁnally are able to
cross theAtlantic, the explorers are using the diaries of the crusaders. To understand the way
that these explorers treated the natives, you have to look at the crusades.
The ﬁrst prominent muslim leader was Zengi, he attacked and destroyed the ﬁrst Crusader State
of Odessa. In Europe, they decide to launch the Second Crusade led by Kings. It fails, utter
humilation for Europeans. Zengi’s predocessors continue to chip away at Crusader States. Salah
ed-Din captures Jeruselem entirely exept for Tyre. Tyre sends the distress call to Europe. Europe
launches the Third Crusade led by Richard the Lion Heart,August Philip of France, and
Barborosa. The Third Crusade fails to take Jerusalem. Innocent the Third becomes Pope and the
ﬁrst thing he does is launch the 4th crusade. His general is prevented from joining the army on its
way to Constantinople, and Christian soldiers sack and pillage the Christian city of
Constantinople. By 1291 Muslim soldiers were well equip to repel Christian soldiers and the
Holy War was lost forever.
II. a. Just War
Crusading is rooted in ancient religion predating Christianity, Judaism, suggesting that
there are 10 rules to live by, the sixth being Thou Shalt Not Kill. This has been a problem for
Ancient Christians.Augustine of Hippo pondered this rule. He has two books : Confessions, and
City of God. He suggests that the world is messed up because people have a capacity for evil and
all good people will be punished. In the City of God there are very unique cirumstances under
which violence is acceptable:
1.Achristian soldier has to have just cause.
2.Violence has to be sanctioned by a higher political power
3.Asoldier has to be of right intentions. He must accomplish his goals w