The First Crusade

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The First Crusade was a military expedition by the Roman Catholic Church from 1096-1099 in order to retake holy lands taken by Muslim conquest of the Levant. The result of the work led to the recapturing of Jerusalem. During the crusade knights and peasants from many parts of Western Europe traveled by land and sea to Constantinople and then to Jerusalem. The peasants outnumbered the knights. Peasants and knights were split into separate armies. However, because the peasants weren't well-trained in combat their army failed to reach Jerusalem. The knights arrived at Jerusalem and launched an assault on the city and captured it in July1099 while killing many of the city's Muslim and Jewish people. They also established the crusader states of the Kingdom of Jerusalem. The First Crusade mainly began because of political and social problems in Europe during the 11th century. It seems that Christianity caused the majority of the problem because the papacy wanted to establish a uniform religion throughout Europe, but there were many battles across the land that caused so many problems. As a result the popes who had great political power established these crusades which were fairly well organized. Although Europe was successful in capturing Jerusalem for the first time their rule was short lived. They weren't even able to maintain hold on Jerusalem for more than two centuries. Before this crusade the Byzantine Empire had to fight with the Seljuqs and other Turkish dynasties for control. When the crusaders arrived there had already been conflict wit the area. The pope rulers were too much of extremists. They worried about capturing land for religious purposes before trying to improve their own living conditions before trying to capture even more land. This is something I don't understand with most empires is why the capture more land when they are already in social and Sawar 2

political problems. I don't believe the recapture of Jerusalem benefited the Europeans...
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