Christian Society and the Crusades, 1198-1229

By Edward Peters | Go to book overview

III. The Fifth Crusade, 1217-1222

1. Signs and Portents: From the Chronicle of Roger of Wendover

The Crusade invoked by the Fourth Lateran Council began to move in 1217. These brief selections offer a flavor of men's apprehensiveness and eagerness to answer Pope Innocent's summons.

Of Signs in the Heavens by which the Province of CologneWas Incited to Assist in the Crusade, 1217

In the month of May in this year, on the sixth day before Whitsuntide, the province of Cologne was awakened to its duty to the Saviour; for at the town of Bebon in Friesland there appeared in the sky the form of the cross in three places, one towards the north of a white colour, another towards the south of the same form and colour, and the third in the middle of a dark colour, with the form of the crucifix, and the figure of a man suspended on it, with uplifted and extended arms, with nails driven through the feet and hands, and with the head bent down; this one was in the middle between the two others, on which latter did not appear the image of a human body; at another time and place too, namely, at a town of Friesland called Fuserhuse, there appeared near the sun a cross of a blue colour, and more people saw this than those who had seen the former crosses: a third cross appeared at the town of Doctham, where saint Bonifacius was crowned with martyrdom; at this place on the feast of the said martyr, many thousand men having col-

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Christian Society and the Crusades, 1198-1229
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Editor's Note vii
  • Introduction ix
  • I - The Fourth Crusade, 1202-1207 1
  • II - Crusade and Council, 1208-1215 25
  • III - The Fifth Crusade, 1217-1222 48
  • IV - The Emperor's Crusade, 1227-1229 146
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