The First Four Crusade Wars

Savannah Birch


This is a very different type of article, more of an informational piece that I feel never gets talked about. THE CRUSADES! The Crusades were a series of religious wars between religions for reasons. 



The Crusades started in 1095 and ended in 1291. There were many wars during this time but the main reason for it was the Christians and Muslims started primarily to secure holy sites by both groups. There were 8 Crusades that took place during the Medieval period. 


First Crusade

 The First Crusade took place from 1096 to 1099. Four armies of Crusaders from different Western European regions. They were led by Raymond of Saint-Gilles, Godfrey of Bouillon, Hugh of Vermandois, and Bohemond of Taranto when they took their groups to Byzantium in August 1096. The group of “people’s crusaders” leader named Peter the Hermit decided to ignore Alexius’ advice to wait for the other Crusaders who started the fight. In May 1097, the Crusaders and their Byzantine allies attacked Nicea. 


Second Crusade 

 The Second Crusade occurred from 1147 to 1149. After the First Crusade, many went back to their home. For the ones who stayed back, they established four large Western settlements or Crusader states in Jerusalem, Edessa, Antioch, and Tripoli. The Crusader states kept their power until 1130 when Muslim forces began gaining ground in their own holy war against the Christians. The fall of Edessa in 1144, surprised Europe and caused Christian leaders in the West to call for another Crusade. The Second Crusade ended with Muslim forces dealing with a defeat against the Crusaders. 

Third Crusade 

 The Third Crusade happened in 1187 and ended in 1192. After many attempts by the Crusaders of Jerusalem to take control of Egypt, Nur al-Din’s forces seized Cairo in 1169 and forced the Crusader army to rethink. In 1187, the nephew of Nur al-Din’s forces (Saladin) began a campaign against the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem. His army destroyed the Christian army and they took back their lands. This all led to the Third Crusade which was led by Emperor Fredrick Barbaossa, King Phillip II of France, and King Richard I of England. In September 1191, King Richard I forces defeated Saladin’s forces. Then, in September 1192, Richard and Saladin signed a peace treaty that ended the Third Crusade and established the Kingdom of Jerusalem. 


Fourth Crusade 

 The Fourth Crusade took place in 1202 and ended in 1204. Pope Innocent III wanted a new Crusade in 1198. In response to the new emperor’s attempt to submit the Byzantine church to Rome, the Crusaders declared war on Constinople. This was the bloodiest war for the Crusades. 


These were only the first Four Crusades that took place. There are 4 more Crusades which will be spoken about in another article. Crusades are never really talked about in History but I think they are a very important event that happened.