Crusades Dbq Essay

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The Crusades were a series of holy wars fought between the Christian and the Muslim for control of Jerusalem and the area near it. However, while salvation and redemption in the eyes of God were major reasons for starting these crusades as seen in doc. 1 and 2 which promise absolution of the sins of the fighters, there were many secular reasons for fighting the Crusades which include possessing more prosperous land which is exemplified in doc. 6 and 7. Doc. 1, 2, 4, and 3 all demonstrate the part religion played in starting the crusades. Doc. 1 is a proclamation given by Pope Leo IV in about 850 AD to the Frankish Army which stated that all those who died in the upcoming battle during the crusades would go to heaven. The overwhelming majority of Europeans at this time were devout Catholics, who believed that the pope had the power to absolve sins and ensure their passage to heaven which would have been one of the most important reasons for fighting in the crusades. The pope probably wrote this to boost moral and ensure that nobody deserted the Christian army during the battle. Because if the reward for fighting in the crusades was heaven, it can be almost certain that the punishment was going to hell. This would have been characteristic of Catholicism at the time, which was known for threatening damnation as a punishment for doing something that went against its will. In doc. 2, one sees an assertion from Pope John VIII in 878 that all those who fought in the holy wars would be forgiven for their sins. This statement would have attracted many soldiers at that time period because of the religious fervor which was so common in the medieval ages. It was common for people to attend church several times a week and if the church would absolve their sins, it would be a way of attracting not only devout Catholics, but also people who perhaps had not followed the catholic
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