Illustration of a catapult that would hurl stones and other projectiles at the enemy during the Middle Ages. These machines were used during the Crusades. They were especially useful during sieges when they could be used to hurl heavy stones at and over the walls of a city.

A Catapult Used to Hurl Projectiles in the Middle Ages

Illustration of a catapult that would hurl stones and other projectiles at the enemy during the Middle…

Illustration of a single crusader, dressed in chain mail and a cross-covered tunic kneeling on one knee with his hands clasped in prayer. His spear with Christian banner are leaning against his shoulder. The banner has two crosses on it. He a sword in a scabbard attached to his belt. Greaves protect his shins and sabatons protect his feet.

A Crusader from the First Crusade Kneels in Prayer

Illustration of a single crusader, dressed in chain mail and a cross-covered tunic kneeling on one knee…

This illustration shows a group of Crusaders gathering for a battle.

Crusaders

This illustration shows a group of Crusaders gathering for a battle.

An illustration of crusaders before Jerusalem. The Crusades were a series of military campaigns of a religious character waged by much of Christian Europe against external and internal opponents. Crusades were fought mainly against Muslims, though campaigns were also directed against pagan Slavs, Jews, Russian and Greek Orthodox Christians, Mongols, Cathars, Hussites, Waldensians, Old Prussians and political enemies of the popes. Crusaders took vows and were granted an indulgence for past sins. The Crusades originally had the goal of recapturing Jerusalem and the Holy Land from Muslim rule and were launched in response to a call from the Eastern Orthodox Byzantine Empire for help against the expansion of the Muslim Seljuk Turks into Anatolia.

Crusaders

An illustration of crusaders before Jerusalem. The Crusades were a series of military campaigns of a…

A group of people identified as "Crusaders" march to the Holy Lands. There are several knights on horseback, wearing traditional armor and carrying spears and flags. There are also people who look to be commoners, on foot, heads bowed with exhaustion. A horse lies on the ground and a man kneels over it. Two other men sit on the ground at the front of the group.

Crusaders, Including Knights and Pilgrims, on the March

A group of people identified as "Crusaders" march to the Holy Lands. There are several knights on horseback,…

A picture of the Crusades

Crusades

A picture of the Crusades

God willeth it!

God says so

God willeth it!

"Tomb of Godfrey de Bouillon. During the Crusades, the Kingdom of Jerusalem in 1099. The conquered lands were now formed into a little feudal kingdom, the head of which at first was Godfrey de Bouillon. He would not, however, accept the title of king, preferring to be called Defender of the Holy Sepulcher."—Colby, 1899

Godfrey de Bouillon Tomb

"Tomb of Godfrey de Bouillon. During the Crusades, the Kingdom of Jerusalem in 1099. The conquered lands…

Henry I (c. 1068/1069 – 1 December 1135) was the fourth son of William I the Conqueror, the first King of England after the Norman Conquest of 1066. He succeeded his elder brother William II as King of England in 1100 and defeated his eldest brother, Robert Curthose, to become Duke of Normandy in 1106. He was called Beauclerc for his scholarly interests and Lion of Justice for refinements which he brought about in the rudimentary administrative and legislative machinery of the time. Henry's reign is noted for its political opportunism. His succession was confirmed while his brother Robert was away on the First Crusade and the beginning of his reign was occupied by wars with Robert for control of England and Normandy. He successfully reunited the two realms again after their separation on his father's death in 1087. Upon his succession he granted the baronage a Charter of Liberties, which formed a basis for subsequent challenges to rights of kings and presaged Magna Carta, which subjected the King to law.

Henry I of England

Henry I (c. 1068/1069 – 1 December 1135) was the fourth son of William I the Conqueror, the first…

"A Knight Templar. During the Crusades, there were military and religious orders. Between the first and second crusades two peculiar military and religious orders were established. These were the Knights, Hospitalers, or Knights of St. John, and the Knights Templars. The Knights of St. John were organized originally to care for the sick and wounded among the crusaders and pilgrims to Jerusalem. They took the usual vows of monks, but to these were added vows of military service. They had thus a combined religious and military character, being fighting men as well as monks. The Knights Templars wre organized on a similar plan, but their original purpose had been to protect the pilgrims to the Holy Land. At a later date there was another of these orders established under the name of the Tentonic Knights. All three played an important part in the crusades, and they continued to exist long after the crusades were over."—Colby, 1899

Knight Templar

"A Knight Templar. During the Crusades, there were military and religious orders. Between the first…

A member of the Knights Templar, or the Order of Solomon's Temple, rides on horseback with his sword drawn and raised. He is wearing full armor and helmet. His breastplate and shield bear an image of the cross. His horse is rearing up on its hind legs. The horse is fully dressed. The knight's head is bowed as if he is getting ready to charge.

A Knight Templar Rides into Battle on Horseback

A member of the Knights Templar, or the Order of Solomon's Temple, rides on horseback with his sword…

Krak des Chevaliers was the headquarters of the Knights Hospitaller during the Crusades. It was expanded between 1150 and 1250 and eventually housed a garrison of 2,000. The inner curtain wall is up to 100 feet thick at the base on the south side, with seven guard towers 30 feet in diameter.

Krak des Chevaliers

Krak des Chevaliers was the headquarters of the Knights Hospitaller during the Crusades. It was expanded…

Mosque of Omar, kept by the Mohammedans during the Crusades.

Mosque of Omar

Mosque of Omar, kept by the Mohammedans during the Crusades.

This chess table is carved in ivory depicting characters of the Crusades.

Chess Table

This chess table is carved in ivory depicting characters of the Crusades.