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Crusaders and Jerusalem
01/17/10 | Ryde

Posted on 01/17/2010 6:52:18 PM PST by Ryde

Freepers: I happened to be reading my grandson's college text on the Middle East. Now I know that the crusades were a bloody affair--but all wars are bloody. In an age where there were no firearms, warriors often ended up fighting nose-to-nose and covered in each other's gore. Now according to the text, no more than 12,000 crusaders made it to Jerusalem in total--1,500 men in armor. Then they fought their way over the walls--were repulsed once--and then had to fight their way uphill to take the city. So, when the capture occurred, there could not have been a whole lot of crusaders left uninjured. Yet, the language used is that the crusaders massacred the entire city. I am skeptical. What say you?


TOPICS: History
KEYWORDS: crusaders; jerusalem; moslems; worldhistory

1 posted on 01/17/2010 6:52:19 PM PST by Ryde
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To: Ryde

Which crusade are you referring to?

It’s a lot more complicated than one battle.


2 posted on 01/17/2010 6:54:19 PM PST by Jedidah (Be bold, be sharp, be blunt -- but show a kind conservative heart. The world watches and takes note.)
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To: Ryde

I would be very skeptical, the barbarians weren’t exactly unarmed peaceniks. Remember Christendom was fighting a defensive war, thats what the Crusades were.

Apparently we’re still fighting them.


3 posted on 01/17/2010 6:55:21 PM PST by GeronL (http://tyrannysentinel.blogspot.com)
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To: Ryde

It would appear that many accounts of the Crusades include accounts of great massacres of Jews and Moslems.


4 posted on 01/17/2010 6:58:55 PM PST by Nachum (The complete Obama list at www.nachumlist.com)
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To: Ryde

Given the brutal nature of the hand-to-hand kind of combat of that time it no doubt was bloody to the extent one side stood and fought. My uneducated guess is that after some initial contact and fighting, both side probably withdrew and might have waited to see what the other side might do. Given the rather cowardly way Muslims fight my guess is they high-tailed at the first oppurtunity so there might not have been a lot of Crusaders dead and wounded. As to slaughtering a whole city? Why do that when there might have been loot to go after.


5 posted on 01/17/2010 6:59:40 PM PST by John-Irish ("Shame of him who thinks of it''.)
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To: Ryde
I am not an expert on this subject but I believe when they first took Jerusalem, every Jew and mussie in the city was killed.
6 posted on 01/17/2010 7:03:18 PM PST by TWfromTEXAS (Life is the one choice that pro choicers will not support.)
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To: Ryde
The First Crusade. The Crusaders split among themselves with one body north of the city and one south. The attacks launched, if I am reading this correctly and remembering my own trip to Jerusalem some years ago, had to have come in a pretty uncoordinated fashion. Jerusalem is not easy to attack as the Romans could have attested. The terrain is dreadful and few medieval battles were fought in cities. Being armored and working your way through blind twisty streets is not a good way to stay alive. The whole story has the smell of exaggeration.
7 posted on 01/17/2010 7:04:53 PM PST by Ryde (Post-modernism: good only for those who sleep in soft beds.)
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To: TWfromTEXAS

Couldn’t be. There were simply not enough Crusaders even to set up a seige. There is no possible way for them to have sealed off the city and conducted a general massacre. Maybe all that remained to fight would have been put to the sword, but even that seems unlikely. The general rule was to keep captives for slaves and ransom/


8 posted on 01/17/2010 7:07:14 PM PST by Ryde (Post-modernism: good only for those who sleep in soft beds.)
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To: Ryde

When the crusaders took Jerusalem there was wide-scale carnage. The crusaders’ own accounts talk about “blood up to the horses bridles,” but I’ve never heard it claimed that they wiped out the entire city.


9 posted on 01/17/2010 7:12:24 PM PST by Flag_This (ACORN delenda est)
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To: Ryde
The massacre of most of the population of Jerusulam when the city fell at the culmination of the first crusade is well documented and from what I have read (the history of the crusades being something I studied once upon a time) has suffuciently varied sources and first hand accounts to be considered a historical fact

The fighting was indeed desperate and It was only with difficulty that Godfrey de Boullion's troops gained the city.

Most of the inhabitants (moslem and jew) were butchered in the streets or tortured to reveal their money, gold, jewels etc. Many corpses were cut open to retrieve jewels that had been swallowed.

Only a few of the defenders under the Fathimad governor held up in David's tower and were able to negotiate their safe passage from the city.

All in all it's estimated about 30K men wonmen and children were killed

This is not a comment on Christianity. Just typical war in the 11th century. Neither the crusaders nor their Islamic counterparts thought what occured particularly unusual. A city under seige had disdained an offer to surrender under reasonable terms. If such a city was taken by storm with great loss to the attackers, little mercy could be expected.

10 posted on 01/17/2010 7:23:59 PM PST by Qatar-6
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To: Ryde
The general rule was to keep captives for slaves and ransom/

This I know for a fact is not true. I have read a great deal about the Hundred Years War and the rule was kill all but the knights who might pay ransom. Since I posted to you I have checked 3 on line encyclopedia sources about the First Crusade and they all agree that there was a massacre of some size and that it was common practice in that day.

11 posted on 01/17/2010 7:24:29 PM PST by TWfromTEXAS (Life is the one choice that pro choicers will not support.)
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To: TWfromTEXAS

You can read the sources for yourself here (in English):

http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/sbook1k.html


12 posted on 01/17/2010 7:27:20 PM PST by NotThere
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To: Nachum
From everything that I have studied was that it was first the people who became Muslims took control of the land occupied by Jews and Christians by force, killing all who refused to join Islam

When the religious Christians leaders from Europe made their annual treks to visit the Holy Land, the Muslims charged a tariff or refused their entrance entirely.

Upon returning home, Christian leaders in England, Italy and other countries decided to "defend" their most holy of holy sites by evicting Muslims (who had first "evicted" the Jews and Christians living there).

That the "evictions" were by force, is undoubtedly true but the "victims" were not only the Muslims, as they would have you believe, especially in today's world.

13 posted on 01/17/2010 7:30:35 PM PST by zerosix (native sunflower)
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To: NotThere

Where are the Templars, now that we need them?
barbra ann


14 posted on 01/17/2010 7:34:05 PM PST by barb-tex (He aint heavy, he's my brother!)
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To: Flag_This
“blood up to the horses bridles,”

Are you sure you aren't talking about the Turks taking Constantinople?

Even WackyPedia acknowledges the slaughter: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fall_of_Constantinople

I've seen that phrase before, but always in conjunction with the sack of Constantinople.

15 posted on 01/17/2010 7:38:49 PM PST by slowhandluke (It's hard to be cynical enough in this age.)
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To: zerosix
killing all who refused to join Islam

That is obviously not true. There are still over a million Christians in Egypt and still quite a few in Iraq and Lebanon.

16 posted on 01/17/2010 7:47:22 PM PST by Captain Kirk
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To: slowhandluke

I want Constantinople back.


17 posted on 01/17/2010 7:50:48 PM PST by UnbelievingScumOnTheOtherSide (IN A SMALL TENT WE JUST STAND CLOSER! * IT'S ISLAM, STUPID! - Islam Delenda Est! - Rumble thee forth)
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To: slowhandluke
No, it was definitely about the First Crusade and Jerusalem. I was reading "God's War" a few weeks back and they mentioned that description.

Here's wikipedia's description:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siege_of_Jerusalem_%281099%29

"...in the Temple and porch of Solomon men rode in blood up to their knees and bridle reins."

They go on to say

"The slaughter of large numbers of Muslims on the Temple Mount is sometimes dubiously projected into the entire city, with some modern commentators claiming that all or almost all of the inhabitants of the city were killed. There is no eyewitness evidence for such a wholesale slaughter outside the Temple Mount area.

18 posted on 01/17/2010 7:51:48 PM PST by Flag_This (ACORN delenda est)
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To: Captain Kirk

That’s different. Egypt isn’t at war with the copts.


19 posted on 01/17/2010 7:52:25 PM PST by mamelukesabre (Si Vis Pacem Para Bellum (If you want peace prepare for war))
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To: Flag_This

Well, I screwed up the hyperlink...


20 posted on 01/17/2010 7:54:21 PM PST by Flag_This (ACORN delenda est)
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To: Captain Kirk
They didn't all get killed, many "converted" rather than die but their families remembered their real faith; others who "left" rather than "convert" returned and still others emigrated.

Not everyone who now lives anywhere has spent generations in the same place.

21 posted on 01/17/2010 7:56:38 PM PST by zerosix (native sunflower)
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To: zerosix
The Muslims first gained possession of Jerusalem in 637, when the Patriarch Sophronius surrendered the city on terms to the caliph Umar--the Christians were not slaughtered or forced to convert. The caliph visited Jerusalem but refused to pray in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre lest his followers insist on turning it into a mosque.

Christians continued to be able to visit the holy places...I believe the first problems were centuries later with certain fanatical Muslim leaders who caused problems for Christian pilgrims. Then the Byzantines were defeated by the Turks at Manzikert in 1071 and the Byzantine emperor looked to the West for help. Pope Urban II made the recovery of Jerusalem rather than aiding the Byzantine emperor the main goal.

22 posted on 01/17/2010 8:11:38 PM PST by Verginius Rufus
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To: Ryde
One of the worse city sieges was when the Mongols sacked Baghdad.
23 posted on 01/17/2010 8:31:47 PM PST by justa-hairyape
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To: All

Thank you, this was a very interesting exchange. So much for my applying logic to military matters!


24 posted on 01/18/2010 7:02:01 AM PST by Ryde (Post-modernism: good only for those who sleep in soft beds.)
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To: TWfromTEXAS

The record is a bit confused but there is no indication that every Jew and Muslim was killed.

“There the Saracens assembled and resisted fiercely all day, so that the whole temple flowed with their blood. At last the pagans were overcome and our men seized many men and women in the temple, killing them or keeping them alive as they saw fit. On the roof of the temple there was a great crowd of pagans of both sexes, to whom Tancred and Gaston de Beert gave their banners [to provide them with protection] .


25 posted on 01/18/2010 7:53:04 AM PST by pacific_waters
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To: Verginius Rufus
Let's not forget either that Muslims sacked Rome and looted the Basilicas of Saint Peter and St Paul two and a half centuries before the first crusade was launched. Couple years later, Muslims returned and were turned back by a Christian fleet at the battle of Ostia.

The prisoners taken in that battle were forced to help build the Leonine Walls which stand around the Vatican today.

26 posted on 01/18/2010 8:10:31 AM PST by Brugmansian
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To: zerosix

I was merely commenting on an absolute statement which was simply not true, the millions of Christians in the Islamic world (many practicing in ancient churches) still attest to that.


27 posted on 01/18/2010 8:32:28 AM PST by Captain Kirk
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To: Berosus; Fred Nerks
Ping!
28 posted on 01/18/2010 8:32:48 AM PST by SunkenCiv (Happy New Year! Freedom is Priceless.)
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