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Main Crusades to the East

Crusade Background Leader(s) Outcome
First Crusade (1096-9) Proclaimed by Urban II to aid the Greeks against the Seljuk Turks in Asia Minor, liberate Jerusalem and the Holy Land from Seljuk domination, and safeguard pilgrim routes to the Holy Sepulchre. Bohemond I, Godfrey of Bouillon, Raymond (Count of Toulouse), Robert (Count of Flanders), Robert Curthose (Duke of Normandy), Stephen (Count of Blois) Capture of Nicaea in Anatolia (Jun 1097); Turks vanquished at Battle of Dorylaeum (Jul 1097); capture of Antioch in Syria (Jun 1098), Jerusalem (Jul 1099). Godfrey of Bouillon became ruler of the new Latin kingdom of Jerusalem, and defeated the Fatimids of Egypt near Ascalon in Palestine (Aug 1099). Three other crusader states were founded: Antioch, Edessa, Tripoli.
Second Crusade (1147-8) Proclaimed by Eugenius III to aid the crusader states after the Muslim reconquest of Edessa (1144). Conrad III of Germany, Louis VII of France German army heavily defeated by Turks near Dorylaeum (Oct 1147), and the French at Laodicea (Jan 1148); Damascus in Syria invested, but siege abandoned afetr four days (Jul 1148). The crusaders' military reputation was destroyed, and the Syrian Muslims united against the Latins.
Third Crusade (1189-92) Proclaimed by Gregory VIII after Saladin's defeat of the Latins at the Battle of Hattin (Jul 1187) and his conquest of Jerusalem (Oct 1187). Frederick I Barbarossa, Philip II Augustus of France, Richard I of England Cyprus conquered from Greeks (May 1191), and established as new crusader kingdom (survived until 1489); capture of Acre in Palestine (Jul 1191); Saladin defeated near Arsuf (Sep 1191); three-year truce guaranteeing safe conduct of Christian pilgrims to Jerusalem. Most cities and castles of the Holy Land remained in Muslim hands.
Fourth Crusade (1202-4) Proclaimed by Innocent III to recover the Holy Places Boniface of Montferrat Despite papal objections, crusade diverted from Egypt or Palestine to (1)Zara, a Christian town in Dalmatia, conquered for Venetians (Nov 1202); (2)Byzantium, where embroilment in dynastic struggles led to sack of Constantinople (Apr 1204) and foundation of Latin Empire of Constantinople (survived until 1261). The crusading movement was discredited; the Latins in Palestine and Syria were hardly helped at all; the Byzantine empire never fully recovered; and the opportunity was lost of a united front between Latins and Greeks against the Muslims.
Fifth Crusade (1217-21) Proclaimed by Innocent III when a six-year truce between the kingdom of Jerusalem and Egypt expired. Andrew II of Hungary, John of Brienne (King of Jerusalem), Leopold (Duke of Austria) Three indecisive expeditions against Muslims in Palestine (1217); capture of Damietta in Egypt after protracted siege (May 1218 - Nov 1219), further conquest attempted, but crusaders forced to relinquish Damietta (Aug 1221) and withdrew.
Sixth Crusade (1228-9) Emperor Frederick II, who first took the Cross in 1215, married the heiress to the kingdom of Jerusalem in 1225. Excommunicated by Gregory IX for delaying his departure, he finally arrived at Acre in Sept 1228. Frederick II Negotiations with Egyptians secured Jerusalem and other places, including Bethlehem and Nazareth (Feb 1229); Frederick crowned King of Jerusalem in Church of Holy Sepulchre (Mar 1229). Jerusalem was held until recaptured by the Khorezmian Turks in 1244.
Seventh Crusade (1248-54) Proclaimed by Innocent IV after the fall of Jerusalem and defeat of the Latin army near Gaza by the Egyptians and Khorezmians (1244) Louis IX of France Capture of Damietta (June 1249); defeat of Mansurah (Feb 1250); surrender of crusaders during attempted withdrawal. Damietta relinquished and large ransoms paid (May 1250). Louis spent four years in Palestine, refortifying Acre, Caesarea, Joppa and Sidon, and fruitlessly attempting to regain Jerusalem by alliances with the Mameluks and Mongols.
Eighth Crusade (1270-2) Proclaimed after the Mameluk conquest of Arsuf, Caesarea, Haifa (1265), Antioch and Joppa (1268). Charles of Anjou (King of Naples-Sicily), Edward of England, Louis IX of France Attacked Tunisia in N Africa (Jul 1270); Louis died in August; Charles concluded treaty with Tunis and withdrew; Edward negotiated 11 years' truce with Mameluks in Palestine. By 1291 the Latins had been driven from the Holy Land.

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Last updated: 2005-01-17