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The Impact of the Crusades on the Role of the Church

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The Crusades were a series of political and military conquests led by the Catholic Church to gain back the Holy Lands. There were four crusades of the Middle Ages and the Children’s Crusade. The launching of the Crusades changed the role of the church as it became a military system and the church’s relationship with the Muslim world became more hostile. The launching of the Crusades changed the role of the church because as the church gained more power it became more of a military symbol.

The church gained power during the crusades like the power to torture heretics.

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One of the ways Christians tortured heretics was by hanging them by their arms and jabbing them with spears (Document 3). The Inquisition was a demonstration of the church gaining more power because before the Crusades began, the church was not able to question people, but when they began, the church was able to torture people for information. The Christian Church also became a symbol of military power with the launching of the Crusades because it could send armies to far off lands, including Jerusalem and Constantinople (Document 4).

The Fourth Crusade ended at Constantinople because they could not make it to Jerusalem. Pope Urban II, with the launching of the Crusades, was also able to grant people promises and slander other religions. He granted people “ Remission for sins and… imperishable glory in heaven… for fighting the enemies of Christ” (Document 5) The Pope feels this way about Muslims because they took over the Holy Lands that the Christians wanted.

He wanted control of Jerusalem for himself so Christians would be able to make their pilgrimage to Jerusalem for the “remission of sins” (Doc 5) that he promised. A document from a soldier actually fighting in the Crusades would be monumentally useful in understanding motives for joining the Crusades because it would give first-hand accounts and reason for doing so from someone who actually experienced the power of the Pope’s words and rewards for doing so.

However, The Church sending people to far off lands was not very successful because they never recaptured Jerusalem from Saladin, they only sacked Constantinople. Finally, the Pope encouraged people to who wanted to go to heaven to fight on the Crusades. The Crusades were not successful because many people died, they did not regain Jerusalem, and the Pope was left responsible for the deaths and failures. The launching of the Crusades changed the Church’s relationship with the Muslim world because they made Muslims and Christians more hostile towards one another.

Areas controlled by Muslims such as Southern Spain (Document 1) were reaching areas controlled by the Christians, so war was inevitable because the Muslims tried to expand on to Christian lands. The Muslim leader Saladin also helped make the Muslim’s and Christian’s relationship more hostile when he promised to “free the earth from anyone who does not believe in Allah (SWT)” (Document 2) Their hostilities were also evident in their battles. The Capture of Jerusalem was brutal.

There were “fragments of human bodies…headless bodies… and the blood of the slain” and “ten thousand people who lay slain in the streets and squares… estimated at no less” (Document 6). After the Crusades the relationship between Muslims and Christians went downhill. The clearly biased Church often glorified the Crusades as a battle to gain back what was theirs to begin with and romanticized the story of them. The Muslims, however, believed that the Crusades were a series of meaningless wars to terrorize another religion and replace it with Christianity.

The Four Medieval Crusades changed the role of the Church as it gained more power and the Church’s relationship with the Muslim world became more hostile. After the Crusades began, the Church began torturing heretics in order to gain information. The Church also sent people as far as Constantinople and Jerusalem to fight bloody wars. The relationship with the Muslim people changed because of Saladin threatening to kill Enemies of Allah (swt) and because of bloody battles between Muslim and Christian forces.

Cite this The Impact of the Crusades on the Role of the Church

The Impact of the Crusades on the Role of the Church. (2016, Sep 28). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/the-crusades-dbq-essay/

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