World History Project - Origins to the Present
- READ: The “Dark Ages” Debate
- READ: Was There Ever a ‘Dark Age’?
- BEFORE YOU WATCH: Shoguns, Samurai and the Japanese Middle Ages
- WATCH: Shoguns, samurai and the Japanese Middle Ages
- READ: China Under the Tang and Ming Dynasties
- BEFORE YOU WATCH: International Commerce, Snorkeling Camels, and The Indian Ocean Trade
- WATCH: International Commerce, Snorkeling Camels, and The Indian Ocean Trade
- BEFORE YOU WATCH: Impact of the Crusades
- WATCH: Impact of the crusades
- READ: Medieval Women in Western Europe, c.1000-1350 CE
- READ: Women in Song China
- READ: Du Huan (Graphic Biography)
- A Dark Age?
The Crusades, spanning 200 years, led to significant changes in Europe and the world. They caused massive death tolls, shifted power dynamics, and fostered trade and learning. The Pope and Kings gained power, cities became important trade centers, and knowledge from the Middle East was brought back to Europe.
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- How heavy was Medieval armor?(9 votes)
- An entire suit of field armor (that is, armor for battle) usually weighs between 45 and 55 lbs. (20 to 25 kg), with the helmet weighing between 4 and 8 lbs. (2 to 4 kg)—
From metmuseum.org(23 votes)
- What difference did the Crusdaes make to the Europeans?
What difference did the Crusades make to the Islamic?(4 votes)
- The Crusades returned much of the Holy Land (modern Syria, Israel, Palestine) to the Catholic Church which at that time was being squeezed out of the Middle East. Therefore, I believe that the Crusades put off the shifting of Christianity from the Middle East to Europe. Originally, Christianity actually was most present in places like Persia and Central Asia rather than in Europe. Slowly, it began to move westward. The Crusades returned this focus to the east. Honestly, the conquest of Jerusalem was really not that influential to the Muslim World. Governing an empire from Spain to India, the Muslim Caliphate really had no reason to try to extend military resources to take back the city until much later in history.(6 votes)
- did the cruseders use firarms or cold wepons like swords and sheilds(3 votes)
- Firearms did not come into use in Europe until centuries after the Crusades ended. All fighting in those wars was conducted with rocks, sticks, blades and arrows.(4 votes)
- Hi guys.. How about a map that is not marked with geographical features like rivers ..& confusion? We need to see these countries clearly outlined. The lines going all over the place are bewildering! There should be No text except the country names.. Thanks.. by my preferred name Liz(2 votes)
- During the crusades, there were no countries (like now). The modern nation state is a modern invention. If the names of the countries at the time of the crusades were on the maps, would you even recognize them? Names like "Upper Thuringia" and stuff like that?
When referring to something as long ago as the Crusades, mountains, rivers and deserts are much more useful.(5 votes)
- At6:45, what are some examples of what was brought back to Western Europe?(3 votes)
- They basically brought back the idea that they could merge other peoples traditions with their own.(0 votes)
- how did the crusades effect christens in Europe(3 votes)
- Was the Children's Crusade real? If so, how much did the Children's Crusade conquer?(2 votes)
- 1) The Children's Crusade was real.
2) The Children's Crusade did not conquer anything. It raised a lot of money and enlisted many children, but it only ended up in waste of resources and lives. It fizzled out before anyone reached the Holy Land.(4 votes)
- Why is the medieval period so important to the present and future of wars right now?(2 votes)
- I don't think it is important to the present of wars right now, and I hope that wars will cease and never happen again. What do you hope for regarding wars?(4 votes)
- Since some of the routes of the crusades in the videos go through the Mediterranean, were there any famous naval battles during the crusades that maybe helped or hindered the taking of Jerusalem?(3 votes)
- [Sal] We've already had several videos where we give an overview of the Crusades. And just as a review, they happen over roughly 200 years during the High Middle Ages. The first Crusade at very end of the 11th century and actually the most successful of the Crusades, allowing the Western European powers to take control of Jerusalem and much of the Holy Land. And you could see that here on this diagram where Jerusalem, at least, goes from green to red, controlled by the Western European, the Latin Christians. And they're able to maintain control through these Crusader kingdoms all the way until 1187, when Salah ad-Din is able to retake control of Jerusalem. Then a few decades later, as we go into the Sixth Crusade and the Barons' Crusade, which isn't depicted here, the Western Europeans are able to take more control but eventually, the Muslims take control of Jerusalem and as we enter into the 14th century, they have control of the entire Holy Land. Now while that is happening, Constantinople gets sacked at the end of the Fourth Crusade by the Crusaders themselves and even though it's retaken, this is really the beginning of the end for the Byzantine Empire. So let's think a little bit about how the Crusades changed Europe and the entire world. Well, one of the obvious impacts of the Crusades was just the amount of death it caused. It's estimated that the death toll from the Crusades is two to six million people just from Western Europe. And just to put that into perspective, the European population at the time was about 60 to 70 million folks. So we're talking about four to 10 percent of the population dying in the Crusades. And this isn't fully accounting for all of the death and destruction that happened on the way to the Crusades or that happened in the Middle East as well. If you look at this map of what the region looks like as we get into the 14th century, right over here, you can see that although the Middle East is still in control of the Muslims, Muslims have for the most part been pushed out of the Iberian Peninsula, and they have a little bit of a foothold right here in Grenada. And this Reconquista is going to continue all the way until 1492 when what will be the Spanish are able to push out all of the Muslims from the Iberian peninsula and as they do that, they also expel the Jews. You also have territorial gains in the north of Europe that's a little bit harder to see on this map over here. As I mentioned in previous video, part of this Crusader mentality was not just about taking land back for the Byzantines or taking land from the Muslims, but also trying to take land or convert what were perceived as pagans in the north, German tribes that had not as yet converted to Christianity. And so that helped for territorial expansion in the north of Europe. Now a big theme in the Crusades was the power of the Pope. Remember, the Crusades were started by a Pope working people up, saying, "Hey, let's go help the Byzantines. "Let's go take back land from the Muslims." Pope Urban II. And over the course of this 200 years, you have this religious fervor where the Pope is organizing these Crusades. People are feeling this religious spirit. Many people are, before going on their Crusade, they're bequeathing their land to the Church. If they die, and many of these lords do end up dying, they're giving their property to the Church, headed by the Pope. Kings also gained power during the Crusades. In other videos, we talk about the feudal system and many times the vassals to the kings, the dukes, the counts, the barons, often had more control over their territory than the kings might have had. And they were constantly squabbling with each other but as people started to focus their energies on this external adventure known as the Crusades, first of all, many of these lords died, their property went back to the state, went back to the kings. You start having less internal dissension. In a way, this idea that Pope Urban II thought of at the end of the 11th century. Hey, why don't I point people externally so they stop worrying about what's going on internally? It kind of worked. Another trend is the importance of cities. In the feudal system, it's all about these manors and all about these estates. But in order to finance the Crusades, centers of trade and commerce became more important and also, as there was more interaction between West and East and more people traveling, you can imagine that it fostered trade which centered at these cities. And that goes into the next point, commerce and trade itself was fostered by the Crusades. It wasn't all fighting. The Venetians and other trader city-states, they helped facilitate the movement of arms and people from West to East, but on the way back, they also brought goods to trade. And so they became much, much more powerful. In fact, by the end of the Crusades, as we get into the 14th century, Venice, which is right over here on our map, was considered the richest and most powerful city in Europe. Venice has all of this trader wealth and it's not just from trade. As you might remember from previous videos, when Constantinople was sacked, it was sacked in part by these Venetian traders and after that, they built an empire. They broke up the Byzantine empire and took some of it for themselves. And so it's not a coincidence that as we get into the 14th and 15th century, places like Venice and Florence, famously sponsored by the Medici family, a famous banking family. So once again, these are centers of trade, centers of commerce became the places where the Renaissance would first flourish. And last but not least, as in some ways bloody and dark a time as the Crusades were, they were also associated with learning because you had all of these people go from Western Europe to the Middle East and the Holy Land and at that time, remember, we have videos on the Golden Age of Islam. In a lot of ways, they were shepherding the knowledge of the Ancient Greeks and the Romans and they were merging that with knowledge from the Indians and the Chinese and also coming up with innovations on their own. And a lot of the Western Europeans brought that back to Europe.