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Crusades The Crusades began in 1088 when Urban II preached the First Crusade at the Council of Clermont The reason for such a mass following of people to leave their homes and travel to the Holy Land to fight is unknown There are numerous plausible causes which will be discussed in this paper The reason the Pope preached the Crusades originally was the supposed threat of Muslim rule In truth the Muslims and Christians in the Holy Land had lived peacefully for years but the Pope was also a politician Many believe that his motive was to gain political power by gaining control of all of the Muslim territories This feat was accomplished by the and of 1099 and four new states were set up after the first crusade had ended It is fairly easy to see why the Pope would want to incite the crusades but why would normal people leave all they had to carry out this Holy War Many people believed because this is what the Pope told them that all of their sins would be forgiven if they carried out this momentous task They were practically guaranteed a place in heaven Other crusaders went in search of gold and riches that they would take after plundering the Jewish and Muslim villages Many younger sons of aristocrats went in search of land because their older brother had inherited the familys land An additional reason for men and women to go fight may have been pride Keeping up with the Joness is not a new concept Many people may have felt pressured to join the crusades along with their neighbors and after committing to go one could not turn back with the penalty of excommunication The crusades also created business for maritime cities This may not have been an incentive for the church to begin the crusades but it may have encouraged the continuance of them All of these
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