Crusades and Crusading

The launching of the First Crusade at the end of the eleventh century, and its success in capturing Jerusalem in 1099, would mark a turning point in medieval history. For the rest of the Middle Ages, crusades and crusading would play a fundamental role in many aspects of crusading society, including warfare, trade, politics and religion.

The following are various resources: articles, videos, books and more, about the crusades:

News about the Crusades and Crusading

Crusaders massacre of Jerusalem was done in cold-blood, not religious frenzy, historian argues

A leading historian of the Crusades believes that 1099 massacre of Jerusalem’s inhabitants by the army of the First Crusade was not the result of religious fervour, but rather, “the cold-blooded implementation of…’ethnic cleansing’.”

Remains of Crusader / Templar army discovered in Israel

Archaeologists and historians working in northern Israel have discovered the remains of a Templar and Crusader army who were slaughtered by Saladin in one of the major battles of the Crusades. The results of the excavations are now being broadcast on the program “Last Stand of the Templars”.

Historian dispels myths about Eleanor of Aquitaine and the role of women on the Second Crusade

One of the popular images of the Crusades is the story of Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine taking 300 of her ladies-in-waiting with her on the Second Crusade during the years 1147-49. While this particular tale has long-been debunked, a recent article has shown that many other aspects of Eleanor’s role, and the overall effort of women during the Second Crusade has been emphasized too much.

How did the Baltic Crusades shape European society as we know it today?

A new University of Reading led study aims to investigate the environmental and cultural impact of the Baltic Crusades and its role in shaping modern Europe. Whilst the Crusades are famously associated with European attempts to recover the Holy Land, they were also a key feature of the expansion of European society in other frontier regions.

Acre, Crusades get spotlight in international history conference

The city of Amsterdam played host to the 21st International Congress on Historical Sciences last month, bringing hundreds of historians together from a wide range of areas. Medievalists were well-represented with over a dozen papers dedicated to the crusades and the city of Acre in particular.

Special issue of Reading Medieval Studies to focus on the crusades

Did the Crusaders have a Muslim ally in the First Crusade?

Overlooked account of the First Crusade provides new insights into the Venetian role

Medieval Professor uncovers Crusading Families

English crusaders settled in 12th century Spain, study finds


The First Crusade

The Second Crusade

The Crusader States in the Twelfth Century

The Third Crusade

The Fourth Crusade

Crusades and Crusading in the Thirteenth Century

Crusades and Crusading in the Later Middle Ages (14th-16th centuries)

The Crusades and Byzantium

Islamic Perspectives on the Crusades

Crusades in Northern and Eastern Europe

The Albigensian Crusade

More Articles about the Crusades – general articles that span long periods


The Crusades, with Terry Jones

Click here to see more from this series

After Rome: Holy War and Conquest

Click here to see more from this series


Sources on the First Crusade: Insights from Three Editors – with Carol Sweetenham, Susan B. Edgington, Bernard S. Bachrach and David Bachrach

Conor Kostick – The Social Structure of the First Crusade

Rodney Stark – God’s Battalions: The Case for the Crusades

Donald S. Richards – The Chronicle of Ibn al-Athir

Laurence Marvin – The Occitan War: A Military And Political History Of The Albigensian Crusade, 1209–1218


Just some of the many interesting and insightful books about the Crusades:

Holy Warriors: A Modern History of the Crusades, by Jonathan Phillips

Letters from the East: Crusaders, Pilgrims and Settlers in the 12th–13th Centuries, edited by Malcolm Barber and Keith Bate

Crusaders and Crusading in the Twelfth Century, by Giles Constable

Crusaders and Settlers in the Latin East, by Jonathan Riley-Smith

The Chronicle of Prussia by Nicolaus von Jeroschin: A History of the Teutonic Knights in Prussia, 1190–1331, translated by Mary Fischer

Competing Voices from the Crusades, edited by Andrew Holt and James Muldoon

Fighting for the Cross: Crusading to the Holy Land, by Norman Housley

The Crusades in Fiction and Film

Kingdom of Heaven

Crusade: A March Through Time

Crusade, by Robyn Young

Crusade: The Heretic’s Secret, Part I, by John Wilson

Sand Daughter, by Sarah Bryant

Rashi’s Daughters Book Three: Rachel, by Maggie Anton

Order in Chaos, by Jack Whyte

A Plague of Poison: a Templar Knight mystery, by Maureen Ash

More Resources

The First Crusade – from the program What If, this show poses the quite plausible hypothesis that the First Crusade did indeed fail. What would have been the consequences of such an outcome? Professor Chris Andrew poses the quite plausible hypothesis that the First Crusade did indeed fail. What would have been the consequences of such an outcome? Renowned expert on the Crusades, Professor Jonathan Riley-Smith, editor of The Oxford Illustrated Guide to the Crusades explains that, had they failed to take Jerusalem, there would have been no Crusading movement. He goes further: a victory for Islam might well have encouraged the Seljuk Turks to invade Europe with greater success than they achieved in later centuries.


The Crusades-Encyclopedia – edited by Andrew Holt

The Ecology of Crusading: The Environmental Impact of Conquest, Colonisation and Religious Conversion in the Medieval Baltic

Internet Medieval Sourcebook: The Crusades

The First Crusade: A short narrative from contemporary sources

A History of the Crusades – full text of an important six-volume work about Crusades

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