Godfrey of Bouillon and his crusaders attacking the walls of Jerusalem in the battle that made him the first
western ruler in the region.
Wars in the Name of God
“Deus le vult (God wills it),” shouted the crowd on Tuesday, November 27, 1095, from the field outside Clermont. Pope Urban II had summoned the faithful to a council at this French city to present a plan to end Muslim control over Jerusalem and the parts of the Middle East Christians called the Holy Land. He called it a crusade, taking the name from the Latin crux (cross) used as its symbol. Four years later, the defenders of Jerusalem surrendered, but later crusades would continue for more than two hundred years.
Originally military in design, the crusades were a response to other factors, as well. They coincided with a return to sovereign control over anarchy and a revived economy evident in larger harvests, increased