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Medieval and Byzantine History Medieval and Byzantine History Forum - Period of History between classical antiquity and modern times, roughly the 5th through 16th Centuries


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Old February 13th, 2018, 02:05 AM   #21

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The greatest "impact" of the crusades was to break the advance of Islam, giving to Western Christianity the time to develop the techs and the social organization to start the age of exploration and the colonization of a wide part of this planet ... no problem if Ottomans conquered the Eastern Roman Empire ... it was irrelevant.
At the time of the first crusade 'Western Christianity' whatever that is, if you mean the Kingdom of Castilla, had expanded into the lands of muslim states - something you call 'islam' - and taken the Taifa of Toledo.

What I'm saying is that Western Christianity didn't take it from islam, the Kingdom of Castilla, fairly pacifically, conquered the Kingdom of Toledo.

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Wasn't that symbolically attributed to the Franks in the 732
Correct, symbolically. In effect the whole 'islam' thing was never united again after the takeover of the Visigothic kingdom. Ever. Sort of halted itself by the internal feuding which would define it's history - often due to doctrinal, racial or dynastical differences.

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Islam wasn't advancing at all at the time. the Crusades arguably lead to re resurgence and unification of squabbling states leading to Islam regrouping and beginning to advance again.
True. Saladin even requested help from his enemies the Almohads in the west by the use of their fleet. The request was declined, officially because it was busy. Which it was, but I suspect they thought it wouldn't be a very good idea to send their own ships east.
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Old February 13th, 2018, 03:06 AM   #22

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Originally Posted by johnincornwall View Post
Only to try and get recruits

And money.

And settlers.
Well… in those 3 items the bulls were usually well succeeded
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Old February 14th, 2018, 02:52 AM   #23

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Well… in those 3 items the bulls were usually well succeeded
It's well-known that Jaime I El Conquistador made good use of Templars, Hospiallers and papal support. But it's also known that the royal throne after the bizarre will of Alfonso El Batallador was very precarious. Constant trouble with Catalan and Aragonese nobles made it imperative to have 'other support'. Indeed he was tutored and protected as a youth in the Templar keep at Monzon.

I'm also reminded of the Papal Bull attached to Alfonso VIII of Castilla and the Las Navas (1212) campaign. Bear in mind that the Almohads had flattened any opposition at Alarcos in 1195 and forced a 15 years treaty and that Leon and Castilla were nearly always in hostilities with each other, the other kingdoms to a lesser degree. Also bear in mind that leon even attacked frontier posts during the campaign and the Almohad army was not without Leonese or even Castillian exiles!:

Large numbers of crusaders (Franks) from Ultramar - taking a break from slaughtering innocent civilians in the Languedoc - followed the Papal call and assembled with Alfonso's army outside Toledo, gnawing into the vast supplies he had assembled for the campaign. There was a scandalous incident where they drunkenly attacked the juderia of Toledo, supporters of and protected by Alfonso, and had to be stopped by Castillian troops. As they marched south the supplies soon started running out and the Franks, used to comfortable living, complained. Knights of the Spanish kingdoms were more used to the heat and lack of water. The last straw was when Alfonso forbade them to slaughter the muslims of Salvatierra when they took the town. 'Franks' were more used to slughtering all inhabitants and plundering everything - witness Portugal and also the Languedoc - whereas in Spain citizens just passed under new rule, whatever their religion - at that time.

The main army of Franks cleared off home in a sulk and only about 200 fought at Las Navas - with some bravery I understand - in what was a fairly epic battle. Though historical numbers are ridiculous it fell - more by accident than design, as it was entirely due to the relative progress of the 2 under-supplied armies - that the battlefield was an enclosed area without flanking opportunities and therefore it was 2 armies battering each other for a considerable time until something gave or something inspirational happened.

Often said to be the watershed moment of the Reconquista Las Navas didn't actually make a lot of difference in the long run. Within a year the Caliph Al Nasr was assassinated, Castilla was bankrupt and plague and drought riven and Alfonso dead, Pedro of Aragon was dead at Muret and many Castillian knights were working in North Africa as mercenaries!

And the Almohad Empire started it's long, self-combustion

Last edited by johnincornwall; February 14th, 2018 at 02:55 AM.
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Old February 14th, 2018, 11:46 AM   #24
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Looking at it from a Hungarian point of view, it gave rise to John Hunyadi who in turn gave rise to Matthias Corvinus. I also heard that the money from the Pope that was given for Crusades against the Turks to the Hungary gov was used by Matthias to buy the Crown.

In general, it helped the Church and kings gain more control over Knights by appealing to them to fight for the good of Christendom and given them titles like Athlete of Christ to aspire to.
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Old February 26th, 2018, 05:07 PM   #25
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The cooperation and combat with the more sophisticated Byzantines and against the Muslims and Turks greatly influenced European methods of war. Europeans saw the value in operating around a stable infantry core, though often they had to use dismounted knights to do this. The Byzantines showed the usefulness of strong fortifications, though the Europeans took a very defensive interpretation of them rather. Instead of using fortifications as strong points to control territory and create difficult-to-quell threats with defense->offensive stances like Byzantines, Europeans made their fortifications more difficult to attack but also relatively easy to mask and rather useless for seizing the initiative.
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