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The Crusades A Successful Failure Essay

1108 words - 5 pages

Religion, war, bloodshed and disputes for land. This is what the crusades consisted of; a set of religious wars that only led to failure. One could say that the Seljuk Turks signed their death warrant once they began to conquer Christian land of the crumbling Byzantine Empire. It all started when the Seljuk Turks decided to conquer Jerusalem. That’s when Pope II decided to take action. Because Jerusalem is holy land for Christian’s (because Jesus Christ spent last days there as well as his crucifixion happened right outside of the walls of Jerusalem), the Pope wanted to reclaim the land back. So a group of people devoted to the cause decided to venture out to the holy lands, obliterating anything that got in the way of their goals; which was basically everything. Many innocent lives were taken because of them. Also, this was unofficial because the people took off without the official leaders and went in unexperienced with no talent. The people who took part of the ‘People Crusade’ had only made it so far, far enough to Jerusalem, when they were captured by the Seljuk Turks. Anybody can guess what happened to the ‘People Crusade’ after that. It was annihilated. But the leaders back in Europe did not give up the conquest of Jerusalem. The leaders continued to plan out the first official crusade. The first crusade was the religious war that led to the capture of Jerusalem, and the effects of the crusades had significantly affected the Middle Ages and history to come.
The first official crusade was one filled with bloodshed and arduous fights, like the many yet to come. The leaders were tentative about fighting for the pope, because there was no personal gain, but they gave in at the end. As the warriors traveled to Jerusalem, they came across the Seljuk troops. The Seljuk Turks were defeated in the battle of Dorylaeum, and the warriors of the church marched on forward, arriving at Antioch. The crusaders decided to siege Antioch, but it wasn’t the best idea. The crusaders killed many of its inhabitants, with the sights of a Muslim army not far off in the distance. But the thing was that the crusaders were running low on supplies. Tired and hungry, all hope was lost. But they still won, with their strong willed faith in God, as they would say. Continuing the journey, the crusaders mercilessly massacred many people, using the excuse it was for the ‘good’ of the people. “As one Christian writer put it, “the slaughter was so great that our men waded in blood up to their ankles,”” says historical writer, Dawn Marie Hayes. She was right; it was barbaric behavior, killing Muslims and Jews left and right. They had even burned the city Maarat an-Numan after massacring most of the inhabitants! As they reached Jerusalem, the death rates of the crusaders enemies spiked significantly. Once they reached the walls of Jerusalem, the crusaders tried to break the defenses. But it didn’t work. The army was too strong for them in their weakened states and there wasn’t a...

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