SOC250Y1 Lecture Notes - Pope Gregory Vii, Pope Urban Ii, Crusade Song

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24 Apr 2012

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March 14, 12
- Powerful families would make sure that their male offspring would
be trained to obtain high positions in the church.
- ^Contended to become popes.
The Sacralization of Christian Combat
- In 8th and 9th centuries Popes Leo IV and John VII promised that
all who died in defending against Arabs, Magyars, or Vikings will win
eternal life.
- By 1050, the Church monopolizes the “ordination” of knights,
widely considered as constituting an 8th Sacrament.
- The initiate‟s armour and weaponry would then be blessed and
smeared with holy oil
- Pope Gregory VII (1073-85) proclaimed that military service for
Christ could secure a complete remissio peccatorum
- Holy war as penance killing the “enemies of god” is deemed
more effective… than prayer, fasting, or works of mercy.
- Crusading a devotional act of armed pilgrimage, initially to
reclaim the Holy Land from Muslim control, but which expanded to
include religious wars against pagans in Eastern Europe and the
Baltic region, Greek and Russian Orthodox Christians, Tartars, and
Christian heretics, such as the Cathars and Hussites, as well as
political enemies of the popes (in these operations, massacres
against local Jewish populations were common).
- Christian-Muslim hostility had been rising, owing to Seljuk Turkish
pressure on the Byzantines and, since 1009, when the Fatimid
„mad‟ Caliph al-Hakim ordered the destruction of churches and
synagogues throughout North Africa and the Middle East…
- In 1063, Pope Alexander II involved in the Reconquista Christians
fighting against Muslims would be absolved of sins if died in battle.
- Pope Urban II, calls for deliverance of the Holy Land, Nov. 1095
declares it an “act of penance so severe that it is fully sufficient to
remit all the sins” of the confessing crusaders
- Crusader ceremonial:
- Taking the cross inspired by Matt. 19:29
- Purse and staff (like the pilgrim)
- The sacred vow
- Crusader rights and privileges: moratorium on debt repayment and
interest; exemption from tolls and taxes; automatic release from
excommunication; personal confessors who had wide powers of
- Monks served as recruiting agents pledged that monasteries
would safeguard property and the families of the crusaders.
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