The "Children's Crusade" is one of the more extraordinary events found in Medieval England. The "Children's Crusade" was set after the Fourth Crusade. By the closing stages of the Fourth Crusade (1202 to 1204), it was obvious that the Christian crusaders had added no lasting achievement. Actually, the Fourth Crusade had been a tragedy for the Christians as a lot of crusaders had not even got to the Holy Land let unaided struggle for Jerusalem and a lot of Christians had used the crusade as a means to steal precious goods from overseas. The "Children's Crusade" appeared to put some Christian faith back into crusading. Two grouping came into view in 1212 which appeared to designate that the viewpoint of the First Crusade were still breathing. The tale of the "Children's Crusade" owes its survival to two divided incidents, both happening in 1212. The better recognized but less expected engages one Stephen from the township of Cloyes in France. Stephen allegedly declared that Jesus had come to him concealed as a poor pilgrim and gave him a note for the king. On his way to Paris to convey it, the lad fascinated a crowd of possibly 30,000--many of whom, enthused by the spirit of the times, supposedly determined to lead for the Holy Land. Stephen went around advocating to children about his note from Jesus and his wish to go to the Holy Land to detain Jerusalem. He told his supporters that crossing the Mediterranean or any other watercourse was simple as the waters would part and they would walk crossways as they were sheltered by God. By June 1212, Stephen is said to have gathered 30,000 followers around him - all children. The pilgrims made their means to the harbor of Marseilles, where two merchants, Hugo Ferreus ("Iron Hugo") and William Porcus ("William the Pig"), presented to transfer them by ship. Of seven ship crowded with kids, two sank in a rainstorm, sinking all on board, while the other five arrived at North Africa, where the children...
Cited: Brundage James; Chronica Regiae Coloniensis Continuatio prima, s.a.1213, MGH SS XXIV 17-18, translated by, The Crusades: A Documentary History, Milwaukee, WI: Marquette University Press, 1962.
George Zabriskie Gray; The Children 's Crusade: An Episode of the Thirteenth Century. Hurd & Houghton, 1870.
Raedts Peter; "The Children 's Crusade of 1212". Journal of Medieval History, 3. 1977. p.279-324.
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