Crusades in Europe: Effects of crusades - History

Answer in Brief

Crusades in Europe:

Effects of crusades

Explain the causes and effects of the European crusades.



  1. European Crusades:
    (i) The two cities of Jerusalem and Bethlehem considered holy by the Jews, Christians, and Muslims were under the Islamic rule in the 11th century.
    (ii) Christians of Europe wanted to regain hold over these cities and fought several wars known as 'Crusades'.
    (iii) The common people in Europe were highly inspired to be part of such religious wars.
    (iv) When the Pope announced that the sins of those who took part in such wars would be forgiven and would immediately go to Heaven, there was spontaneous participation by the common people in the crusades.
    (v) Besides social and political circumstances, the Roman emperors were also trying to bring Syria and Asia Minor under their control.
    (vi) Moreover, the rich merchants in Genoa and Venice in Italy were looking for Central Asian markets to establish their trade.
    (vii) The first crusade started in 1096 C.E.
    (viii) A second call for the crusade was given by Pope Eugenius III who sought help from the French King Louis VII and the German King Conrad III
    (ix)The crusades were ultimately defeated by the Turks and in 1187 C.E. Saladin, the Sultan of Egypt defeated the crusades by conquering Jerusalem.
    (x) However, the crusades failed for several reasons such as the attitude of the Pope and the European ruler's common people losing faith, a rift between the Pope and the European kings, etc.
  2. The crusades had far-reaching effects:
    (i) According to some historians, the crusades led to the end of feudalism in Europe.
    (ii) The faith in the Pope began to decline.
    (iii) The contact with the regions in Central Asia led to increased trade and new venues were opened for cities in Italy and Germany.
    (iv) It led to the rise of a new class of traders.
    (v) The European warfare went through many changes for e.g. they acquired expertise in building forts, managing the forts as military outposts, building bridges, etc.
    (vi) The European kings levied new taxes that were added to the royal treasury.
    (vii) The Europeans were introduced to newer types of plants, fruits, perfumes, etc.
    (viii) The Europeans came in contact with the Arabs and adopted many Arabic words in Alchemy, Music, and Commerce.
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