IBDP Internal Assessments and Extended Essays on Pre-Modern History

What Developments in Roman Politics Lead to the Disaster at Cannae?
Evaluation of Sources (700 Words)

The Histories (Polybius):

The Greek Historian Polybius (200-118 BCE) is generally considered to be the most reliable source regarding the Second Punic War (218-201 BCE). Hailing from Arcadia, he was taken hostage and extradited to Rome in 168 BCE, where he became friends with Scipio Aemillianus, adopted grandson of Scipio Africanus, victor of the Battle that decided the Second Punic War.[1] This relationship granted him access to Roman state archives, treaties between Carthage and Rome and personal papers of correspondence between key figures in the historical development of Rome.[2] Additionally, Polybius’ view that “[p]ersonal inquiry… is exceedingly valuable and the most important part of history”[3] led him to engage with primary sources like henchmen of Scipio Africanus[4] and Lucius Cincius Alimentus: a Roman annalist who was Praetor in Sicily 209 BC and had obtained information about Hannibal when he was captured by the Carthaginians.[5] Another strength of Polybius is his critical evaluation of sources, seen in his treatment of the work of Fabius Pictor, a Roman senator who was sent to consult the oracle of Delphi after Rome’s devastating loss at Cannae.[6] He uses Pictor, but deems his account of the first Punic Wars too partial towards Rome, demonstrating an interest in recounting facts rather than spinning narratives, a criticism that could be leveled at the second source for this IA, Livy. As Polybius writes shortly after the battle, held a public office before, was well connected and knew of military matters he is a source of prime quality for Cannae.

Nevertheless, there are incongruities in his work. As a contemporary of the time he chronicles he is not free from bias, presenting his patrons as magnanimous heroes and, ultimately, thought Rome to be a superior civilization to Carthage deserving of victory.[7] Polybius also commits factual errors- describing armies that march 460 km in a week and his death toll at Cannae exceeds the number of people that could have possibly participated in the battle.[8] In fact, some opine that Polybius exaggerated the peril of Cannae for the Romans, to make their subsequent recuperation and conquest of the Mediterranean appear even more remarkable. After all, in Polybius’ own words, the primary purpose of his work is to unpack “by what means and under what systems of polity the Romans in less than fifty-three years have succeeded in subjecting nearly the whole inhabited world to their sole government.”[9] Clearly, the Romans’ feats were incredible to him and a miraculous recovery after the nadir at Cannae makes for an inspiring story. Regardless, he remains an excellent source and gives the impression that he genuinely believed that “his function [was] above all to record with fidelity what was actually said or done, however commonplace it may be.”[10]

Ab Urbe Condita (Livy):

Born in modern day Padua, Livy is virtually an exact contemporary of Augustus.[11] A remarkable exception amongst Roman historians, he never served in the military or as a public official. Polybius would be scornful of Livy’s history, because of his aversion to fieldwork, but Livy attained fame with ‘Ab Urbe Condita,’ a 142-tome attempt at chronicling a 7-century history of the Roman people.
Livy is, indubitably, not in the same rank as Polybius. Modern scholars have criticized him extensively [12]: he did not travel, his geography was inaccurate, he treated sources uncritically, was not sufficiently analytical, focused excessively on rhetoric and stylistic narratives[13], his Greek was lacking and his technical knowledge of political and military affairs inadequate. P.G. Walsh provides an example of Livy’s shortcomings.[14] In comparison to Polybius’ descriptions of specific events, Walsh identifies no less than 6 mistranslations committed by Livy: Three in book 23 (the book describing the immediate aftermath of Cannae) and three in book 28. These mistakes, coupled with an allusion made by Pliny the elder to a preface in one of Livy’s lost books, where Livy remarks that he had gained enough fame to stop writing yet felt the urge to continue, lead Walsh to conclude that Livy treated his sources carelessly and that Livy sought “his anodyne not in scrupulous accuracy, but in artistic transcription”. Furthermore, Livy is biased towards the senate, praising patrician consuls, whilst denouncing plebian ones. For the loss at Trasimene, for example, he blamed exclusively Flaminius’ impatience.[15]

Investigation (1164 Words)

To understand what political factors resulted in the Roman Empire’s devastating loss at Cannae it is necessary to set the battle in context. Adrian Goldsworthy, one of the foremost historians of the Punic Wars, ascertains that twelve major land engagements occurred between 218 and 202 (more than half fought on Italian soil).[16] However, during the entire conflict the Romans only lost conflicts on their own land, the Italian peninsula due to the shrewd and cunning actions of a sole man: Hannibal Barca, bane of Rome’s existence during the Second Punic War and one of the most formidable generals of history.

The appendix shows a map of Hannibal’s incursion into Italy, after his notorious march across the Alps in the winter 218-217:[17] Hannibal had victories at both Ticinus and Trebia and after Trasimene, where the Romans lost around 15, 000 soldiers;[18] the Roman senate found itself faced with a threat that had rapidly gained momentum over the last 7 months. Livy describes the city in a state of melancholy as women waited at the gates for their loved ones, many slowly realizing they would never return.[19] To combat the threat Hannibal posed, the senate appointed a dictator, Quintus Fabius Maximus, who came from a prestigious family, had been consul twice before and a dictator once, albeit in a civil capacity.[20]

The main conflict, politically, was to determine whether Rome should follow the Fabian strategy or confront Hannibal on the battlefield. Fabius’ magister equitum was Marcus Minucius from which there would considerable friction between the two, as they considered different approaches to the crisis to be the correct one. O’Connell argues that “Maximus understood one thing-Hannibal’s never-ending need to feed his army,”[21] and in fact the Fabian strategy was one of attrition. Fabius planned to implement a ‘scorched earth’ policy, urging farmers in the way of the Carthaginians to seek refuge in fortified towns after destroying their crops and livestock (Hannibal’s mercenaries would have had neither the equipment nor the patience for a siege). The problem with Fabian’s strategy of skirmishes and harassment of Hannibal’s foragers was that it went against the very core of the Roman’s principles as a people with supreme confidence in their military, accustomed to seek battle and not shy away from it.[22] Livy quotes Minucius as saying: “Are we come here to see our allies butchered, and their property burned, as a spectacle to be enjoyed?”[23] Hannibal, sensitive to the wedge being driven between Minucius and Fabius, once even destroyed everything around what he was told was an estate of the dictator, but left Fabius’ property itself untouched. This sly trick undermined Fabius’ authority in Rome and Fabius was recalled to Rome, probably to explain the lack of progress in the war.[24] In Fabius’ absence, Minucius blatantly disregarded the dictator’s strategy and won a minor victory in Gerunium, Apulia in the early autumn of 217, which lead the Romans to grant him power equal to that of Fabius[25]. However, shortly thereafter Hannibal lured Minuncius into a trap, which would have ended in disaster were it not for Fabius, who must have known something was awry, as had marched out and then deployed his troops to provide a rallying point for the fleeing troops of Minuncius. According to both Livy and Polybius the incident restored Fabius’ credibility and when his term as a dictator ended consuls M. Atilius Regulus and Geminus continued his strategy.[26]

However, the “political” element of the research question becomes relevant with the next consular elections, which signified the end of the Fabian strategy as less patient men rose to power such as L. Aemilius Paullus (patrician) and Gaius Terrentius Varro (plebeian). Major controversy surrounding Cannae is which was actually in command on August 2nd. Both Livy and Plutarch hold Varro in very low esteem, casting him as a hotheaded demagogue, elected by a foolish populace and Paullus as wise and a check to his impulsive counterpart. Both historians stage private conversations between Fabius and Paullus, where the latter agrees with former’s strategy and castigates Varro for his volatile character.[27] Polybius does not criticize Varro to the same extent, but is still clearly of the mind that Paullus was the better consul and Varro not apt for the position.[28] This is difficult to accept however given that the committee that elected the consuls was timocratic in nature making it extremely difficult to become a consul without at least some semblance of support from the senate.[29] Furthermore, Varro was assigned several important commissions and military commands immediately after Cannae- odd if he really was as incompetent during the battle as ancient sources claim.[30] At the same time, the reliability of Polybius’ views on the consuls diminishes if one bears in mind that his patron was Paullus’ grandson.[31] Lazenby adds that there is a possibility that Varro even served under Paullus during his first consulship, campaigning in Illyria, and that both consuls were probably in agreement on how to fight Hannibal.[32] In fact, whilst older historians like Kromayer generally accepted that Varro was commandant on that day, modern historians have veered away from this explanation and contended that Varro was scapegoated.[33] Varro was first of his family to become consul and lacked  descendants of particular importance whilst the Aeimilii were among the most powerful families in Rome, with the means to save Paullus’ reputation and smear Varro’s through propaganda.[34]

Retrospectively, it is easy to say that the Fabian strategy was the better choice: Another year of reducing the Carthaginians to foraging scroungers might have defeated their army.[35] One could blame the militarism that was so endemic to Rome’s society for the disaster. After all, the enthusiasm of the Romans was such that up to a third of the senate joined the ranks of the army for Cannae.[36] However, the battle was not completely unjustified, as it is likely that all it would have taken was one decisive Roman victory to win the war, as the Punic army was simply too far from any secure outpost to sustain a heavy loss. [37] Moreover, the Romans were dominating the seas with their navy and experiencing considerable military success in Iberia, Carthage’s source of wealth.[38] Their success was such that Carthage opted to send reinforcements there instead of to Hannibal. Perhaps the Romans thought that they had Hannibal where they wanted him at that it was time to deal the finishing blow and rid the Italian peninsula of this parasite. Perhaps Rome thought it needed a victory to prevent allies from entering agreements with Carthage. Nevertheless, underestimating Hannibal’s tactical genius, the result can be regarded as a failure on political fronts. The disaster could have been averted and Rome could have kept its 16 legions. Instead they got a bloodbath that wouldn’t be matched until more than two millennia later. The Romans were fortunate that Hannibal’s strategic intellect did not compare to his operational one. To paraphrase his commander of cavalry, Maharbal: Hannibal knew how win a victory but not how to use one.[39]

3. Reflection (333 Words)

“[It is] as much about how we know as what we know, an engagement with all the processes of selection … that … produce the ‘facts’ … out of the messy, confusing and contradictory evidence that survives.”[40]

In all history there is an element of uncertainty, but it is compounded when one studies the ancient and this quote elucidates how crucial source evaluation is to this particular area of history. It is unclear whether sources are authentic and whether addendums were made to them in periods such as the middle ages. The sheer scarcity of extant work is a problem as well. Of Livy’s ‘Ab Urbe Condita’ only 25% remains and of Polybius’ ‘The Histories’ only books 1 to 5 are completely extant, whilst there are remnants of books 6-34.[41][42] Overall, we have around 30% of his work. Moreover, the few soures available to us must be scrutinized extensively and sometimes turn out to be nearly worthless. Appian’s account of Cannae is the first after that of Polybius and Livy, but is largely dismissed by modern historians. Lazenby points out that there are no similarities between Appian and Polybius’ model of the battle.[43] Appian also writes of implausible scenarios, such as an individual duels between Hannibal and Scipio Africanus during the battle of Zama.[44]

Investigating Rome also made it clear that it is very difficult for a historian to contextualize events. I wanted to focus on Cannae, but how to give a full picture without exploring Rome’s military, culture and political structure in excruciating detail? A historian must sift through considerable material only to pick out the couple of gold nuggets that will shape his argument. To investigate Livy for example, I ended up looking at his scholarly treatment by German historians of the 19th century, even though he was just a source for my investigation and not the subject of it. When so many have already unpacked that which one is trying to dissect, diversity is offered along with much distraction.


FOOTNOTES: [1] Prevas, John. "Chapter 3: The Ancient Sources." Hannibal Crosses the Alps: The Invasion of Italy and the Punic Wars. Cambridge, MA: Da Capo, 2001. 72. Print. [2] O'Connell, Robert L. The Ghosts of Cannae: Hannibal and the Darkest Hour of the Roman Republic. New York: Random House, 2010. 6. Print. [3] Polybius, The Histories (12.27) [4] O’Connell, P 6 [5] Walbank, F. W. "Pragmatike Historia." Polybius. Berkeley: U of California, 1972. 80. Print.          [6] Baronowski, Donald Walter. "Historians and Roman Imperialism." Polybius and Roman Imperialism. London: Bristol Classical, 2011. 43-44. Print. [7] Dillon, Matthew, and Lynda Garland. "Rome's Mediterranean Empire." Ancient Rome: Social and Historical Documents from the Early Republic to the Death of Augustus. New York: Routledge, 2005. N. pag. Print. [8] Lazenby, J. F. Hannibal's War: A Military History of the Second Punic War. Warminster, Eng.: Aris and Phillips, 1978. Print. [9] Polybius, The Histories (1.1) [10]Polybius, The Histories 2.56 [11] Mineo, Bernard. "Historical Context of the Ab Urbe Condita." A Companion to Livy. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, 2015. 25. Print. [12] Chaplin, Jane D., and Christina Kraus Shuttleworth. "Introduction." Introduction. Livy. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2010. N. pag. Print. [13] Mellor, Ronald. "Livy." The Roman Historians. London: Routledge, 1999. 51. Print. [14] Walsh, P. G. "The Negligent Historian: 'Howlers' in Livy." Greece & Rome 5.1 (1958): 83-88. Web. [15] Daly, Gregory. "The Road to Cannae." Cannae: The Experience of Battle in the Second Punic War. London: Routledge, 2004. 25. Print. [16] Goldsworthy, Adrian Keith. The Punic Wars. London: Cassell, 2000. 311. Print. [17] Western Mediterranean Hannibal. Digital image. Dickinson College Commentaries. Dickinson College Commentaries Department of Classical Studies, n.d. Web. 15 Oct. 2016. . [18]  Goldsworthy, Adrian Keith. The Punic Wars. London: Cassell, 2000. 311. Print.         (Goldsworthy attributes the figure to Fabius Pictor) [19] Livy, Ab Urbe Condita (22.7) [20] MacDonald, Eve. "Hannibal the Conqueror." Hannibal: A Hellenistic Life. London: Yale UP, 2015. 115. Print. [21] O’Connell, P 122 [22] Lancel, Serge. Hannibal. Oxford, UK: Blackwell, 1998. 101. Print. [23] Livy, Ab Urbe Condita (22.14) [24] Livy, Ab Urbe Condita (22.23) [25] Polybius, The Histories (3.103) [26] Polybius, The Histories (3.105); Livy, Ab Urbe Condita (22.29) [27] Livy, Ab Urbe Condita (22.39) ; Plutarch, Fabius Maximus 14 [28] O’Connell, P 134 [29] Daly, P 119 [30] O’Connell, P 134 [31] Daly, P 121 [32] Lazenby, P 74 [33] Dolfen, J. "Controversies." Darkness over Cannae. Wordpress, 20 Sept. 2014. Web. 20 Jan. 2017. . [34] Goldsworthy, P 199 [35] Shean, John F. “Hannibal’s Mules: The Logistical Limitations of Hannibal’s Army and the Battle of Cannae, 216 B.C.”Historia, 45:2, 1996, p. 183 Print. [36] Goldsworthy P, 67 [37] Goldsworthy P, 74 [38] Parker, James. "Comparing Strategies of the 2d Punic War: Rome’s Strategic Victory Over the Tactical/Operational Genius, Hannibal Barca." USAWC STRATEGY RESEARCH PROJECT (2001): n. pag. 2001. Web. 16 Jan. 2017. . [39]O’Connell, P 85 [40] Beard, Mary. "The Question of Triumph." Introduction. The Roman Triumph. Cambridge, MA: Belknap of Harvard UP, 2007. 5. Print. [41]"Livy." Encyclopedia of World Biography. Encyclopedia.com, 2014. Web. 16 Mar. 2017. . [42] Sacks, Kenneth. "Preconditions: The Polybian Text." Polybius on the Writing of History. Berkeley: U of California, 1981. 11-12. Print. [43] Lazenby P 261 [44] Daly, P 25

Where was the battle of Teutoburg Forest located?

Examination session: May 2013
Word count: 1986
Section A: Plan of  Investigation

This investigation will seek to determine where the battle of Teutoburg forest took place. This will be accomplished by using a variety of different sources, from Roman historians writing at the time of the battle, to the 19th century work of Mommsen who first identified the site, supported by the account of Tony Clunn which relates to his search for and apparent confirmation of this site a century after. Paterculus' Roman History is of particular interest given the proximity of his writing to the events described. Moreover, the expertise and judgement of renowned professional archaeologists will be considered both through their work and from personal interviews.

Word count: 106

Section B: Summary of Evidence

The Roman province of Germania was established in 8 A.D. under the military leadership of Consul Tiberius Julius Caesar, who would later become Emperor. In 7 A.D. Publicus Quincitlius Varus was appointed Pro-consul over Germania east of the Rhine. Beforehand he had been the Pro-Consul of Africa and Syria, where he had imposed high taxes and acted brutally in case of any resistance against Roman rule. Velleius Paterculus, a Roman historian, stated that Varus was not an experienced Field - General and that he had left Syria highly unpopular among the population; Varus treated the Germanic tribes as he had the population of Syria, believing , the Germanic tribes were not humans but uncivilised barbarians that had to be calmed down by Roman law. His high taxes and interference with Germanic rules and traditions made him and the Roman occupation very unpopular amongst most Germanic tribes.
    This culminated in an ambush in 9 A.D. where Varus and his army, the three legions XVII, XVIII, XIX, six cohorts of auxiliary troops and three squadrons of cavalry (overall 20,000 men) were completely annihilated on their way back to their winter quarters. Arminius, the son of the Cherusci chieftain Segimer, who had been knighted by Tiberius in 4 A.D., organised the ambush against Varus. Germania would never be conquered by the Roman Empire again.
    The first prominent historian to mention the Kalkriese depression as a possible location for the battle was Theodor Mommsen in 1885 at the gap between the Kalkriese Mountain and the Great Moor, just southeast of the German town Osnabrück in Lower Saxony. Mommsen used Tacitus, as did Clunn, and claimed that the battle site should be "(..)Northern of the river Lippe, eastern of the River Ems (..)". From the Latin word Saltus he concluded that the place must have been a mountainous area and the information given by Tacitus about the moors lead him to claim Kalkriese as battle site. This was supported over a century later by Tony Clunn, who, in 1988, found evidence such as lead slingshot (from catapult slings) in three separate locations and 105 Roman Denarii on the 5th and 12th of July 1987. These catapult slings were apparently those used by auxiliary troops who were mostly recruited by the Romans in the Mediterranean region. Dr. Wolfgang Schlüter, resident archaeologist for Osnabrücker land uses this fact as evidence for the presence of Roman troops in the area and that those findings could not result from any kind of Roman-German trading.
    Accounts by Cassius Dio, Tacitus and Paterculus describe the battle itself and the battleground, recording that the battle took place in an area known as the Saltus Teutoburgiensis. According to J. Lendering "there were large marshes and the rivers Ems and Lippe originated in the neighbourhood of the battlefield". Mommsen also used these ancient authors to back up his hypothesis of the battlefield location.
    The archaeological findings of Clunn and the use of historical sources lead to the excavation of a field called the Oberesch where more coins and military equipment were found that indicated the defeat of an army consisting of different types of soldiers from the time of Augustus. In an area of 50 km2 there were more than 1000 coins from the time of Augustus and 6000 military items found. Additionally the site was "remarkably well suited for an ambush", because of its topography: To the south there is Kalkriese hill that is hard to pass by travellers despite only being 150 metres high but due to its natural shape, and to the north there is a large moor. In between there is only an accessible zone of 220 metres. 

Word count: 614

Section C: Evaluation of sources

Clunn bases his book The Quest of the Lost Legions both on the ancient sources that describe the battlefield and archaeological findings. Published in 2005, it includes the latest knowledge about the battle at Teutoburg forest through incorporating the work of professionals such as Dr. Wolfang Schlüter and Dr. Joachim Harnecker thus supporting his hypothesis both internationally and by the German government. Furthermore artefacts, coins and military equipment have been excavated, much by the author himself in such huge numbers that it is impossible to discard his theory.
Ostensibly, the purpose of the book is found in its title- the discovery of the battle site. However, much is fiction, Clunn is a military officer and only a Hobby archaeologist.
The book is limited as a source for the location of the battle site, because of the lack of actual maps and his employment of fictional descriptions to create an easy, understandable account of the historical plot for the reader. A further problem is the fact that he focuses on his own work rather than on the professional archaeological teams doing most of the work, which is only mentioned to emphasize their support of his findings. This creates the possible charges of bias in reporting what he wants to believe by selecting his evidence. Moreover his description of the site is nearly as vague as those of the Romans, which could apply to nearly any number of areas.
Velleius Paterculus wrote his Roman history dedicated to Marcus Vinicius two decades after the battle when the events were still fresh and he had access to witnesses. Paterculus lived east of the Rhine and thus was in a position to interview veterans, and personally knew Varus and Arminius. The purpose of his account is to inform but mainly to praise comrades-in-arms Marcus Vinicius and Tiberius, adding the threat of bias to his account.  Paterculus is particularly valuable as he is the only ancient historian who records that three units of cavalry were destroyed. Interestingly, Paterculus blamed not the soldiers but general Varus. This contradicts his usual preoccupied approach towards Tiberius, which is a very important detail because Paterculus will have relied only on the accounts of people he trusted if he decided to attack Tiberius indirectly. One big limitation is that he was a close friend of Emperor Tiberius and therefore preoccupied by his admiration to him. Since Paterculus benefited under Tiberius reign, he changed some elements in his account to please Tiberius. At times his documentation of the battle and the battle site is grossly falsified by his attempt to draw a good picture of Tiberius. Perhaps the biggest limitation is the time when he wrote the work as “no expectation existed in Augustan Rome that the geographical information contained in a work of literature should be precise,” thus possibly affecting our use of his description of the battlesite.

 Word count: 478

Section D: Analysis

Clunn's discovery of a thousand coins arguably justified Mommsen's thesis a century earlier, having been found in such quantity that it indicates that they were hidden; in the view of Dr. Moosauer,  given their value they would have been scavenged immediately by others. Up until 1990 however, no bronze coins were found which were the main denomination used to pay soldiers and thus would have been the most common in a legion, and thus provided a crucial argument against Kalkreise being considered the site. From 1990 until 1999 however, 354 bronze coins were found, 93 % of which dated before 9AD as all are stamped with "VAR"- the initials of Varus, or "CVAL"- the initials of a cavalry prefect under Varus.  By August 2000, 1408 coins were found consisting of silver, copper and gold with different stamps and of different types that circulated in the first century A.D. which Schlüter argues proves a major Roman presence at Kalkriese. The different coin types, with special regard to the bronze coins, and their spread were used to determine the area of the battlefield- 50 km2 -and its course, indicating that the Romans were not defeated in a single ambush but in an engagement lasting a couple of days.

Schlüter and Moosauer believe the 6000 military and non-military items found at Kalkriese and the Osnabrueck area support Clunn's thesis.  Amongst the broken daggers, lances and military tools excavated, a cavalry mask found, was very important because it supports Paterculus who mentions the destruction of three units of cavalry. Furthermore the catapult slings found strongly suggest the presence of Roman auxiliary troops at Kalkriese as Schlüter mentions. Moosauer argued that these archaeological excavations prove that there was a battle site at Kalkriese depression with its climax at the Oberesch field consisting of all branches of the Roman army, legionnaires, cavalry and the baggage train  .
There are, however, different interpretations of the findings possible as the leader of the archaeological excavation team at Kalkriese, S. Ross, has highlighted. Since the excavations have not been finished, not all evidence has been analysed in terms of its age by C-14 tests and it is not clear if the some of the findings were scavenged from battle sites and taken to Germanic settlements, it is not possible to pinpoint the exact area of the battle.

Nevertheless one issue arises that prevents a clear answer, which are the geographical terms used by ancient authors to describe the battlefield. Tacitus describes the battlefield with the term Teutoburgiensi Saltu. Saltu can be translated as 'forest' but also as 'mountain pass'. It can also mean ‘untilled mountain land’, ‘woodland pasture,’ ‘ravine’, ‘glen’, and ‘mountain valley’ which in turn could describe much of northern Germany. Dio explains vaguely that the site was somewhere in "the territory of the Cherusci and towards the river Visurgis." The river Visurgis is today called Weser and Kalkriese is not very close to the Weser, lying halfway between the rivers Weser and Ems. Moreover excavations have shown that it wasn't a single ambush that ended the battle but numerous fights, shown by the spreading of the findings around Kalkriese and the Osnabrueck area, which explains Dio's account who writes about a four day battle. However Lendering argued that the topography of Kalkriese is similiar to the geographical descriptions of the ancient authors using the example of Paterculus mentioning narrows in his account. The Oberesch field, which is enclosed by Kalkriese Mountain in the south and the moor in the north, fits that description. Additionally a fortified wall was discovered dating back to 9 A.D., that enclosed the Oberesch field, leaving only an accessible zone of 220 metres.

word count: 612

Section E Conclusion:

The 6000 archaeological findings consisting of coins, military and non-military items and the spreading of these speak in favour of the Kalkriese depression as site of the Varus battle. From the spreading of the evidence it can be concluded that the battle lasted several days at the Kalkriese depression, although the exact number of days has not been distinguished yet.
The Oberesch field can be regarded as the climax of the battle because of the high concentration of findings.
Since the ancient sources mention no other defeat of a Roman army under Augustus in Germania, the chances of an unrecorded battle between Romans and Germans of such a scale are so little that it can be assumed that Clunn's thesis is correct. Additionally the topography of Kalkriese fits the description of these ancient authors. Moreover Kalkriese has been accepted by most leading experts in the areas of Archaeology and History as battle site.
 The final conclusion is therefore that the battle took place at the Kalkriese depression with a major battle site at the Oberesch field.

word count: 176

Works cited:

Books cited:
Clunn, Tony. The Quest for the Lost Roman Legions: Discovering the Varus Battlefield. First Edition ed. New York: Savas Beatie, 2005. Xi-Xl. Print. First Printing.
Mommsen, Theodor. Die Örtlichkeit Der Varusschlacht. Weidmann, 1885. Print
Paterculus, C. Velleius. "Chapters 117-121."The Roman History. Vol. Book II. N.p.: Loeb Classical Library, 924. N. pag. Print.
Wells, Peter S. The Battle That Stopped Rome: Emperor Augustus, Arminius, and the Slaughter of the Legions in the Teutoburg Forest. New York: W.W. Norton, 2003.
Brock, Thomas, and Arne Homann. "Kalkriese Und Die Varusschlacht." Archäologie in Deutschland (2011): 37-46. Print.
Moosbauer, Günther, and Susanne Wilbers- Rost. "Kalkriese- Ort Der Varusschlacht?"  Archäologie in Deutschland (2007): 23-29. Print.
Dylan, Noyle. Rome’s Bloody Nose. The Pannonian Revolt, Teutoburg Forest and the Formation of Roman Frontiers. Oregon: Western Oregon University, 15 June 2007.
Websites cited:
Ausgrabungskampagne 2012 in Kalkriese. VARUSSCHLACHT Im Osnabrücker Land     GmbH - Museum Und Park Kalkriese, 2007. Web. 04 Feb. 2013.
"Archäologen Zeigen in Kalkriese Die Besten Varusschlacht-Funde Des Jahres." Lokales. Osnabrücker Zeitung, 11 Feb. 2013. Web. 02 Mar. 2013.
Barry, Kevin. "Clades Variana (The Varus Disaster)." Barry & Darling Your Home For     Ancient Coins and Artifacts. Barry & Darling, 1996. Web. 02 Mar. 2013
     Fernandes, Irina. "Two Thousandth Anniversary of the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest."     Research and Sciences. Goethe-Institut E.V., Apr. 2009. Web. 02 Mar. 2013.
Lendering, Jona. "The Battle in the Teutoburg Forest (1,2,3,4,5,6,7)." Livius. Livius,
    2003. Web. 04 Feb. 2013.
Mittag, Wolf. "Römische Herrschaft über Germanien." Germanen-und-roemer.de. Wolf
    Mittag, 2003. Web. 04 Feb. 2013.
Rottmann, Joseph. "Grabung Aktuell Sommer 2012." Die Bühne Der Schlacht
Moosauer, Manfred, Dr. "The Varus Battle." Personal interview. 20 Feb. 2013.

History IBDP Internal Assessment

Who Desecrated the Hermai?

Plan of Investigation

I will first research the background of the incident, and the setting. I will then analyse the Greek Historian Thucydides, who lived during this time and is therefore a relative reliable primary source. I will then analyze The Reign of the Phallus: Sexual Politics in Ancient Athens by Eva C. Keuls, as this gives another opinion on who was responsible for the incident and supports the idea that women were responsible. I will furthermore look at the book Ancient Greece as it gives relative factual and accurate information and I will read some of Plato’s symposium. I will then, by analysing what is given draw a conclusion on who is to blame for the incident.


Destruction of the Hermai
The setting of this incident is during the Peloponnesian War. Recently before, in 421 BCE, the Athenians and Spartans had signed a peace treaty since both sides were exhausted. The leading figure on the Athenian side during the negotiations was Nicias, and the following treat which was named after him, made him very popular back in Athens.

The Athenians, after a plea from the Sicilian city of Segesta, planned an expedition to Sicily. At first, a debate consumed the government. On one side, Alcibiades emerged as the proponent of the expedition, claiming that it would bring riches to Athens and it would expand the empire. Furthermore, he claimed, it would not be that difficult as soldiers could be recruited from the Athenian allies in the region. However, one of the generals, Nicias opposed to the entire expedition, as he believed that it was not worth it. Once he noticed that opposing the expedition would make him unpopular, he decided to dissuade the Athenians, by trying to make the expedition look a lot more difficult. This would require a much larger force, leaving Athens a lot more open, and if it failed, would irreparably cripple the Athenian fleet. Yet by stating that a massive fleet and large army would be needed it seemed to fire the Athenians up even more, so the fleet and army of hoplites was built. The command was split up between Alcibiades, who was arguing for the expedition the entire time, Nicias and Lamachus, a career soldier with a lot of experience. This, the Athenians thought, would create a balance between the command, and ensure maximum success. However, the night before, throughout the entire city of Athens the Hermai were mutilated. The Hermai were stone markers, with a bust of the messenger god Hermes and an erect phallus, which is a sign for good luck and fertility. The Hermai were especially directed at travelers as a good luck symbol, granting safe passage to them, and were therefore quite common especially in larger cities. Therefore hundreds of these Hermai were set up all over the city of Athens, at cross roads, boundaries and gymnasia. On the night before the Sicilian expedition hundreds of these Hermai were mutilated, where the phallus was knocked off (argued over by historians), which, judging by the amount of mutilated Hermai, was considered to be a massive act of vandalism. Furthermore, the ancient Greeks took this very seriously as they were extremely superstitious and religious, it was considered to be a religious scandal and it was considered to be a bad omen for the Sicilian expedition, as these symbols of good luck for travellers were destroyed right before a massive expedition. It was unclear who did this, but one of the generals of the Sicilian expedition, Alcibiades was to be blamed for this act of vandalism, as he was seen by political enemies to have vandalized them. Alcibiades volunteered to be put on trial, under penalty of death, to prove his innocence, yet was denied. He was to be arrested later on during the voyage, yet he fled.


Source 1: Ancient Greece, Social and Historical Documents from Archaic Times to the Death of Alexander the Great. Matthew Dillon and Lynda Garland.

This source gives a good account of what the historian Thucydides, who lived during that time, thought of the account, and further more it gives a lot of information about how the people reacted and how serious it was for the government at that time. It also shows how the act was seen as an attempt to overthrow the government, which furthermore confirms the intense reaction by the government. It gives a factual approach to the issue, assuming that it was done by Alcibiades the night before the departure of the fleet to Sicily.

Source 2: Plato’s symposium, Thomas L Cooksey

This source shows how people came to accuse Alcibiades for the incident. It shows how his ambitious and lawless way of being both in his public and private life was seen as a threat, and he was therefore a perfect candidate of someone who would damage these statues. Furthermore, it argues that the part of the statue damaged, was not the phallus, but rather the beard, as it was seen as a more masculine, dominant trait, which would be seen first. It also quotes Thucydides, on the account. Here, both sides are taken to the issue, yet Alcibiades fault in this incident is underlined with his character traits, recorded by Thucydides.


Looking at the incident and what had preceded it and the result of it, it is questionable whether Alcibiades actually was involved in the incident, and who did it, if it wasn’t him.

Analyzing the background, Athens had long lasting connections to Sicily, even before the Peloponnesian War. Once some of the cities, such as Segesta, pleaded for help against the other Sicilian cities. Here, the primary proponent was Alcibiades, while Nicias was arguing against the expedition. Although Nicias was more respected, Nicias thought that if he scared the Athenians with the size of the expedition force needed, that they would vote against the expedition. Yet against what he believed would happen, he excited the Athenians even more, so a major expedition force was gathered, with Nicias, Alcibiades and Lamachus in command. Looking at these accounts, it seems extremely unrealistic that Alcibiades, the major proponent of the expedition from the beginning on would sabotage pillars throughout the city of Athens, knowing that it might be reason enough for the superstitious Athenians at the time to recall the expedition and sentence him to death. However, the night before the expedition massive drinking parties rippled throughout the city. Those poses two sides of the argument, as when people are drunk to the extent as it was described by Thucydides, they sometimes don’t know what the had done and what they are doing or seeing. The first side is that, although Alcibiades was the major proponent, under the influence of alcohol confusing his mind, he might have mutilated these statues and committed this act of blasphemy. Yet he would have had to be in a large group to do this large amount of damage all over the city. It can also be seen, as it was thought by some Athenians that this was an attempt to overthrow the government by the rich upper class. As Alcibiades was part of this class, and because he now stepped into the spotlight of politics where he gained several enemies, it was clear that people would start blaming him for this massive act vandalism. As much as the fact that he was under the influence of alcohol the night before reduce Alcibiades credibility of his innocence, it also reduces the credibility of the supposed witnesses, as these were most likely under the same effect.

Once the incident happened Alcibiades was publically accused of the incident by both political enemies and by supposed witnesses. As it was the day of the departure, although Alcibiades said he would stand trial immediately, under penalty of death, this request was denied. The fact that he would stand trial immediately to prove his innocence suggests that he had nothing to do with it, yet as the expedition had already been prolonged, it was decided that this was not to be the case, so he left together with the expedition to Sicily. Once he left, it is said that his political opponents back on his homeland managed to convince the government of his guilt, so he was sentenced to death and was to be recalled from the expedition.

Yet as of what we know of the incident and what happened afterwards, it seems unlikely that it was actually Alcibiades who is to be blamed.

Looking at a third view, some authors believe that the women were responsible for the desecration of the Hermai. This seems to be a more plausible approach to the incident, as it was the women who mostly objected the expedition, as it was endangering their men and reduced the security of their homes. Furthermore, as women never had many rights it might have been an attempt to show their power.


The Causes of the First Crusade

Was religious zeal the most important reason why Christians went on Crusade in 1095?

This extended essay will be investigating the question “Was religious zeal the most
Important reason why Christians went on Crusade in 1095?”.

The paper uses a variety of sources ranging from books, academic journals, encyclopedias and websites. It will be using a range historians that are known as respected experts on the Crusades and religious conflicts such as Jonathan Phillips, Jonathan Riley Smith, and Karen Armstrong. Some of the books that will be referred to on this topic will be “Jerusalem Besieged: From Ancient Canaan to Modern Israel”, “A History of Jerusalem: One City, Three Faiths”, and “The First Crusade, 1097-1197”.

This essay first explains the importance of Jerusalem to the three religions that were mainly affected by the crusades, it then goes onto look at Pope Urban II’s life. It then explores how three categories played into the reason for embarking on crusade: economic, political, and religious. After that, it will assess which of the three were most important as a reason for embarking on the crusades.

The conclusion is that religion was the most important reason for Pope Urban II’s call for Crusade and for the Franks’ response to the call although politics also played a large role in this decision for both parties.

Although the Crusades occurred several centuries ago they remain a source of tension in modern times thanks to propagandist messages publicized by extremist Islamic groups, being an on-going source of interest in Western media, and George W. Bush’s famous statement made in response to the 9/11 incident, “this crusade, this war or terrorism, is going to take time”, which sent shockwaves through the Islamic world who were stunned at the casual use of the term for the wars that caused so much suffering for both the Muslims and Christians[1]. The Crusades are renown for the religious fervour that stoked such vicious battles between Christians and Muslims as they fought for the occupation of Jerusalem. However few know that the actual catalyst for this bitter conflict was a speech made at Clermont in 1095 by Pope Urban II where in the name of God he called upon all Christians to free the city of Jerusalem from the Muslims[2].

Up until the moment of Urban’s speech Jerusalem had experienced a sustained period of relative peace extending some 450 years[3]. It was a period, with some minor exceptions, in which Muslim rule had allowed for Christian pilgrims safe passage to pursue their own religious beliefs[4].   His call to arms was to ignite a fierce conflict that would last two hundred years, and inflame emotions that find resonance amongst many today. Why did Urban act as he did? What motivated him to cause such chaos in a land that was thousands of miles from his realm of political influence? And did he have any true understanding of the forces that he was about to unleash?

The reasons behind my chosen extended essay research question is because I want to try and find out why both sides fought with such determination and fury for the possession of this one city, and to investigate the motivations of Pope Urban II in inciting this period of momentous clash of cultures as well as perhaps shedding light as to why it can be argued that history is repeating itself today.

The research question for my extended essay is “Was religious zeal the most important reason why Christians embarked the Crusade of 1095?”

Within the body of this essay I utilise primary sources written by Fulcher of Chartres (written 1100-6) and Balderic of Dol, contemporaries of Urban who recorded the contents of his speech at Clermont in 1095. I also report upon the research of historians and commentators such as Jonathan Riley-Smitheee, Karen Armstrong and Jonathan Phillips who assert that Urban’s motivations were religious in his call to war for Jerusalem, while also utilising the research of Carl Erdmann who argues that it was out of a more callous sense of social and political expediency that he made this momentous appeal to all Christians.

Words: 470

Chapter 1: Jerusalem in 675 - 1095
Having visited Jerusalem I have observed how important and treasured this city is by each of the three monotheistic faiths. There are several different locations in the world that hold religious importance such as Mecca and the Vatican, though none has such a rich history of violence. According to Eric H. Cline, Jerusalem has been “demolished completely twice, besieged 23 times, attacked an additional 52 times and captured and recaptured 44 times”[5] due to it being the home of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre (the site believed to be where Jesus was crucified and buried), the Dome of the Rock (the third holiest site to Sunni Muslims), and the Western Wall among other important religious sites. It has attracted thousands of pilgrims from all three religions, with it being the most important site of pilgrimage for Christians since the 4th century[6]. With so many visitors annually, it became the perfect location for a centre of trade and commerce as well as communication[7]. These aspects prove how important Jerusalem is religiously even in a world that is more secular than it was in the past. This can give us a glimpse as to how much more it was important to people in the 11th century and thus give us insight as to what an important role religion played in society in that era.

 While there were many periods of peace between Christians and Muslims during the Islamic rule there were instances where both faiths clashed with the Church of the Holy Sepulchre being destroyed several time more[8]. The heavy tolls that Christian pilgrims had to pay and was what finally pushed the tension into a call for battle with people like Peter the Hermit rallying soldiers for the cause[9]. These disturbances and instances of bad treatment could be a motive for why the Franks went to war, The tension between the two religious groups further prove religious zeal being the main cause for the crusades.

In 1095, Pope Urban II first made the people of Europe aware of the treatment of Christians in Jerusalem at the Council at Clermont where he addressed some 319 abbots, clerks and priests[10]. The religious fervour that possessed Europe’s society is what enraged so many to respond to Pope Urban’s call for crusade.

What exactly motivated Pope Urban II for his call to Crusade? Was it Emperor Alexei’s plea for help against Turkish invasion or was he truly concerned that the Muslims were not fit to be the rulers of Jesus’ believed resting place? In order to understand him more, one must use his speech as a source to derive the motivations behind his call to crusade.

The language used in Fulcher of Chartres’ account of Pope Urban II’s speech is very emotionally charged. Urban refers to the Franks’ duties to God and to their brethren in the east as well as reminding them of their very sinful natures as incentives to drive them to respond to his call for Crusade. He then goes on to rile the audience using language that alienates the Muslims from the audience by referring to them as a “vile race”, a “despised and base race”, and a group that “worships devils”[11].  Urban repeatedly refers to their duty to purify and liberate the captured Christian lands and especially to seize the home of Jesus’ final resting place thus making it quite clear that Urban’s motives for his call for Crusade were primarily driven for religious purposes. However, when looking at the beginning of the speech, Urban makes several references to the importance of the people’s support in ensuring that the Church remains free from any other power and that it should have free reign in matters relating to religion, “ You must especially let all matters that pertain to the church be controlled by the law of the church” and “Keep the church and the clergy a in all its grades entirely free from the secular power”, hence implying that he was attempting to keep power in a time where the Church’s rulings were starting to become insignificant to the nobility and the monarchy[12].

Both past and contemporary scholars have read the speech with the idea of Urban having multiple motives for his call to crusade. Urban’s speech was aimed at multiple large audiences: those present in Clermont in 1095 and those who would hear it from other preachers who were keen to pass on the call.

Chapter 2: Pope Urban II
Pope Urban II, born in France in the year 1040, was originally christened Odo of Lagery[13].  He studied at Reims and became a monk at the monastery of Cluny then was later raised to the position of prior in 1073[14]. He later travelled to Rome and came under Pope Gregory VII’s favour due to his skills in assisting the pope in his efforts in what would come to be known as the Great Reform[15] thus perhaps implying that Urban II had an interest in being involved in controversial activities.

The Reform Movement focused on the reform of the church especially concentrating on ridding the church of the practice of lay investiture, which is the policy where feudal lords and the monarch could appoint bishops, abbots, and priests[16].  Pope Gregory VII argued that lay investiture was not in accordance with traditional practice and that this practice being permitted was to blame for the low morals of the clergy. His efforts to reform the malpractices of the Catholic Church verifies the argument that Urban was very religiously driven and pious, none of his efforts in the Reform movement would have been politically beneficial thus one could argue that in relation to the Crusades, he was also religiously driven as he had been in all aspects of his life. Another example that makes his devoutness apparent is the fact that he never had any children nor did he take any concubines as was common in the clergy in his time.

In 1078, the pope made Odo bishop of Ostia and later legate of Germany from 1084-85. In 1088 he was elected Pope and took on the name Urban, however he was not permitted to enter Rome due to the efforts of the Antipope Clement III (until his expulsion in 1093)[17]. Meanwhile, he worked around his boundaries by summoning great councils to advertise and gain popularity for his continuing efforts of reforming the church. His actions proved his determination in carrying out his religious duties even with the Antipope’s continuing efforts to prevent him from doing so. Taking all this into consideration, it would seem that again, he was not politically driven or power hungry.

Pope Urban II hosted a council at Clermont, France between November 18 and November 28 addressing roughly 319 abbots, priests and bishops who would go on to spread his call for war[18].  He preached about a variety of issues that the church was facing such as going back to traditional practice of focusing on helping the poor, as well as the excommunication of Philip I due to his marriage to Bertrade of Montfort and his abandonment of his first wife. On the 27th of November he finally addressed the idea of going on Crusade to reclaim Jerusalem from the infidel Muslims as well as responding to Emperor Alexius Comnenus cry for help against the approaching invasion of the Seljuk Turks[19]. According to many of the written accounts of Urban’s speech, he mentions the need to aid the East against the approaching Muslim conquerors, thus suggesting that he agreed because of the threat that the expanding Muslim armies posed against the West. He went on to repeat this message and call for Crusade all over France with the help of many who attended the original speech. Soon, thousands were to respond to his call and journey across the globe to their final destination of Jerusalem. The war finally began four years later 1099.
Urban II would go on to die 14 days after the capture of Jerusalem while never learning of the achievement of his goal of recapturing Jerusalem from the Muslims[20].

Chapter 3: Speech and Events Leading up to Moment of War
There have been several different written accounts of Pope Urban II’s speech made at the Council of Clermont in 1095 by contemporaries of the event such as Fulcher of Chartres, Robert the Monk, and Guibert de Nogent. However each of them were written years after the actual speech had been made[21], which could undermine the validity of today’s written accounts of his speech, thus making it more difficult to discern which motives were most important to Pope Urban II. Those who had recorded the contents of his speech would emphasize the motives they thought were most important for going on Crusade.  Each of the accounts differ in exactly what was said however they do all agree on several factors such as the need to reclaim Jerusalem from Muslim occupation, “Enter upon the road to the Holy Sepulchre; wrest that land from the wicked race, and subject it to yourselves[22]”, and that all sins would be absolved if they confessed and embarked on Crusade, “Accordingly undertake this journey for the remission of your sins, with the assurance of the imperishable glory of the kingdom of heaven[23].”

Some 100,000 people answered Pope Urban II’s call to march to Jerusalem however many did not reach their destination[24]. Many were attacked on the way. One example of this were the Turkish attacks on the soldiers led by Peter the Hermit and the knight Walter Sans-Avoir in 1096 while others died of starvation and exhaustion[25]. It took almost four years for the first of the soldiers to reach Jerusalem arriving on June 1099[26]. One would think with all the hardship that the soldiers suffered, they would turn back if their reasons for fighting were purely for economic or political benefit. Their determination suggests that they had a strong reason that drove their ambitions, the reason being the importance of reclaiming Jerusalem for the Christians and to free themselves of all the sins they had committed.

Many Jews suffered at the hands of the Crusaders as they travelled towards Jerusalem. In an attitude of religious pride and excitement to begin the purge of infidels and non-Christians in their homeland the pilgrims started to attack Jews[27]. One instance can be demonstrated when German and French peasant Crusaders persecuted Jews living in the three towns of Speyer, Worms, and Mains where at least 812 Jews were massacred[28].  This persecution of the Jews perhaps could give insight as to how possessed the pilgrims were by their religious zeal; though it was not morally acceptable, it demonstrates just how swept away they were by their mission and thus imply that their reasons for going on Crusade were indeed for religious purposes, to defend Christianity.

Chapter 4: Causes of the Crusades
The possible motives for Pope Urban II’s call for Crusade can be divided into three categories: political, economical, and religious. By looking at historians’ works this paper will attempt to discern which of the three causes was most valid and important for his call for Crusade.

From the perspective of those who come from a very secular society, it can be difficult for contemporary students to understand how such a brutal and bloody conflict could be caused solely for religious purposes. It would be more logical, according to current motives for war, for the Crusades to have been commenced to gain more political influence or to gain resources that would be beneficial economically.

A more cynical approach to this investigation would be to argue that Pope Urban II launched the crusades solely to extend his influence to the East. The Greek Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church had been divided for a while making the Pope’s rulings invalid in the Eastern region. In addition to the loss of power in the East, the monarchy of Europe were beginning to seize more power and ignore the Pope’s right to rule over certain aspects of European society as well. When the Byzantinian Emperor Alexius I Comnenus wrote to Pope Urban II appealing for help against the Seljuk Turks[29], it provided the perfect opportunity to make amends for the hostility between the Eastern and Western Church[30]. According to Fulcher’s records of the Speech at Clermont, Pope Urban II addressed the audience with “For you must hasten to carry aid to our brethren dwelling in the East” in addition to declaring the Muslims’ bad treatment of Christians in the East as provocation for the crowd such as how they had destroyed churches. In Robert the Monk’s account of the speech Urban claimed that Christians living in the East were being tied to stakes and being used for archery target practice[31]. By aiding Emperor Alexius Comnenus, it would mend the rift between the Greek Orthodox Church and the Catholic Church thus allowing Pope Urban II to gain more influence over a larger geographical area. Moreover, the Crusades would act as a distraction for the bloodthirsty knights in the West who were constantly at war and causing instability in their home countries[32].

Further evidence for this argument is that Pope Urban II had made the same offer of freeing Jerusalem of the infidels to the territories of Spain, which were occupied by Muslims as well at the time, as shown through his personal letters to Tarragona[33]. In making this offer, Pope Urban II would be able to gain some authority over the Spanish territories. Moreover, James Douglas suggests that Pope Urban II exploited the feudal system to attain more soldiers for his plight.

The occupation of the East would offer the Western powers many benefits. Michael Prior, a famous lecturer in St. Mary’s College, explained that the East would provide more land for the ever-expanding population in the West[34] and thus provide the decaying society of the West with new opportunities to restart their lives and gain an honest living in the East, as well as the fact that thousands of people went on pilgrimages to Jerusalem making it the perfect site for business. Whoever controlled Jerusalem would have access to the benefits of being a trade centre. However this argument that the Crusades were launched to bring in economic benefits for the Catholic Church is often discarded by the majority of modern historians.  According to Jonathan Phillips, the price of chainmail, horses, and supplies to sustain the soldiers who volunteered to go on Crusade would cost four years annual income for knights[35]. To provide for the demands of the volunteers for the Crusade, many priests were forced to melt down valuables for gold and silver. As such, the Catholic was losing more than gaining economically and thus making the argument of Urban’s motives for the Crusade to be economical redundant. Additionally. Most Crusaders returned home having lost all their possessions thus ensuring that the Catholic Church would not receive anything material-wise[36].

 Famous historians on the Crusades such as Jonathan Riley-Smith argue that the main motivations behind Pope Urban II’s calling for the Crusade were religious. According to Guibert of Nogents’s written account of Pope Urban II’s speech at Clermont, he seemed to be very distraught by the Christian pilgrims’ treatment at Jerusalem, “The cruelty of these wicked men… is unspeakable”. Jerusalem is home to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, the presumed site of where Jesus was crucified. It would seem that Urban was deeply disturbed by the fact that the West was not controlling Jerusalem and leaving the protection of it to the Muslims. He repeatedly mentions the need to make the road safer for pilgrims to Jerusalem as well as to reclaim Jerusalem, these points support the argument that religion did play a major role in the decision making process of Pope Urban II in his call for Crusade. The quest of liberating Jerusalem purely due to devotion to the Christian faith would come to be known as an act of love.

The weakest of the three motives for Pope Urban II’s call for crusade would be for economic reasons. As discussed in the above sections, while there was the perception of receiving financial benefits to going on crusade such as gaining booty from their battles as well as the fact that Jerusalem could be beneficial economically to anyone who controlled it due to it’s strategic location, funding the crusaders’ voyage to Jerusalem cost more than many could afford. Even the church had to contribute to the financing of this trip by melting down their gold and silver. Many did not return with riches that would make up for the cost of the voyage, in fact many came back poorer than when they left.  Furthermore, the booty that the crusaders did receive had to be spent on rebuilding the city and paying for war expenses.

Written accounts of Pope Urban II’s speech reveal both politics and religion to be the main motives for his call to crusade. The question is, which was the most important reason to drive Pope Urban II on his call for Crusade? When looking at the immediate event preceding the call for Crusade, one could argue that Pope Urban II was somewhat politically driven. He responded to Emperor Alexius Comnenus I’s call for aid, which would allow Pope Urban II to regain influence of the Greek Orthodox Church, whose relationship had been strained in the reign preceding his own. Furthermore, the Crusades would allow Pope Urban II to regain influence over the nobility in a time when the Catholic Church’s power over domestic issues was beginning to diminish. However, looking at the importance of faith and religion in the society of the time, it would make perfect sense as to religion being the main driving purpose behind why Christians went on Crusade. Many feared that they would be punished in the afterlife and thus were more than willing to partake in the crusades if it meant that they sins would be forgiven. Furthermore, Pope Urban II had dedicated his whole life to rectifying the malpractices of the church, even when he himself was being persecuted and exiled because of it.

 Consequently, in relation to the question of this extended essay of whether religious zeal was the most important reason as to why Christians went on Crusade in 1095, I believe that while politics did play a major role in Pope Urban II’s motives for his call to Crusade and as to why the Franks agreed to respond to his call, religion was probably the most important motive for going on Crusade due to their fervent beliefs and fear of being punished in the after life as well as the fact that the home of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre should again come under Christianity’s care and domain.

Works Cited:

Mitchell, Joseph R., and Helen Buss. Mitchell. "Could the Crusades Be Considered a Christian Holy War?" Taking Sides - Clashing Views in World History: The Ancient World to the Pre-Modern Era. 3rd ed. Vol. 1. Dubuque, IA: McGraw-Hill Contemporary Learning Series, 2007. 155. Print.
C. Krey, August. The First Crusade: The Accounts of Eyewitnesses and Participants. Merchantville: Princeton University Press, 1921. 33-36. Print.
H. Cline, Eric. Jerusalem Besieged: From Ancient Canaan to Modern Israel. University of Michigan Press, 2005. Print.
Bongars, Gesta Dei per Francos, 1, pp. 382 f., trans in Oliver J. Thatcher, and Edgar Holmes McNeal, eds., A Source Book for Medieval History, (New York: Scribners, 1905), 513
Edgington, Susan. The First Crusade: The Capture of Jerusalem in AD 1099. 1st. New York: The Rosen Publishing Group, 2004. 6. Print.
Asbridge, Thomas. The First Crusade: A New History. Oxford University Press, 2004. Print.
P. Phillips, Jonathan. The First Crusade, 1097-1197. London: Pearson Education, 2002. 18. Print.
Armstrong, Karen. "Crusade." A History of Jerusalem: One City, Three Faiths. London: Harper Perennial, 2005. 271-94. Print.
Bull, Marcus. "Pilgrimage Origins of the First Crusade."History Today. 47.3 (1997): 10. Web. 13 Jul. 2013.
Prior, Michael. "Holy Places, Unholy Domination: The Scramble for Jerusalem." Islamic Studies. 30.3 (2001): 514. Print. 
Douglas, James. "Christians and the First Crusade." History Review. 53 (2005): 34-38. Print.
Willett, Herbert. "Jerusalem." Biblical World. 25.5 (1905): 332. Print.
Charanis, Peter. "Aims of the Medieval Crusades and How They Were Viewed by Byzantium." Church History. 21.2 (1952): 126. Web. 21 Jul. 2013. .
Frankopan, Peter. “The View From The East.” History Today 62.9 (2012): 34-45. World History Collection. Web. 20 July 2013.
Munro, Dana C. "The Speech of Pope Urban II. At Clermont, 1095." American Historical Review. 11.2 (1906): 231. Web. 21 Jul. 2013.
C. Munro, Dana, and Dana C. Munro. Urban and the Crusaders. 1. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania, 1895. 5-8. Print.
McGill, Sara Ann. “The First Crusade.” First Crusade (2009): 1. MAS Ultra –School Edition. Web. 24 July 2013.

Agrait, Nicolas. "The First Crusade. A short narrative from contemporary sources." De Re Militari: The Society for Medieval Military History. N.p., 22 Apr 2013. Web. 18 Jul 2013.
Beuster, Diane. "The speech of Pope Urban II 1095 at Clermont in the versions of the Gesta Francorum and Baldric of Dol." . GRIN Verlag, n.d. Web. 19 Jul 2013.
McGill, Sara Ann. “Crusade Timeline.” Cruade Timeline (2009): 1. MAS Ultra – School Edition. Web. 24 July 2013.

“Urban II” (n.d.): Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia. Web. 20 July 2013
"Urban II." Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia. New York: 2013.
“Investiture Controversy” (n.d.): Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia. Web. 2013.

[1] Mitchell, Joseph R., and Helen Buss. Mitchell. "Could the Crusades Be Considered a Christian Holy War?" Taking Sides - Clashing Views in World History: The Ancient World to the Pre-Modern Era. 3rd ed. Vol. 1. Dubuque, IA: McGraw-Hill Contemporary Learning Series, 2007. 155. Print.
[2] C. Krey, August. The First Crusade: The Accounts of Eyewitnesses and Participants. Merchantville: Princeton University Press, 1921. 33-36. Print.
[3] Bull, Marcus. "Pilgrimage Origins of the First Crusade."History Today. 47.3 (1997): 10. Web. 13 Jul. 2013.
[4] Runciman, Steven. A History of the Crusades:The First Crusade and the Foundation of the Kingdom of Jerusalem. 1. 1. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1951. 3-4. Print.
[5] H. Cline, Eric. Jerusalem Besieged: From Ancient Canaan to Modern Israel. University of Michigan Press, 2005. Print.
[6] Prior, Michael. "Holy Places, Unholy Domination: The Scramble for Jerusalem." Islamic Studies. 30.3 (2001): 514. Print. 
[7] Douglas, James. "Christians and the First Crusade." History Review. 53 (2005): 34-38. Print.
[8] Willett, Herbert. "Jerusalem." Biblical World. 25.5 (1905): 332. Print.
[9] Willett, Herbert. "Jerusalem." Biblical World. 25.5 (1905): 333. Print.
[10] Agrait, Nicolas. "The First Crusade. A short narrative from contemporary sources." De Re Militari: The Society for Medieval Military History. N.p., 22 Apr 2013. Web. 18 Jul 2013. .
[11] Bongars, Gesta Dei per Francos, 1, pp. 382 f., trans in Oliver J. Thatcher, and Edgar Holmes McNeal, eds., A Source Book for Medieval History, (New York: Scribners, 1905), 513-
[12] Edgington, Susan. The First Crusade: The Capture of Jerusalem in AD 1099. 1st. New York: The Rosen Publishing Group, 2004. 6. Print.
[13] Beuster, Diane. "The speech of Pope Urban II 1095 at Clermont in the versions of the Gesta Francorum and Baldric of Dol." . GRIN Verlag, n.d. Web. 19 Jul 2013.
[14] “Urban II” (n.d.): Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia. Web. 20 July 2013
[15] "Urban II." Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia. New York: 2013.
[16] “Investiture Controversy” (n.d.): Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia. Web. 2013.
[17] "Urban II." Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia. New York: 2013.
[18] Bongars, Gesta Dei per Francos, 1, pp. 382 f., trans in Oliver J. Thatcher, and Edgar Holmes McNeal, eds., A Source Book for Medieval History, (New York: Scribners, 1905), 513
[19] Charanis, Peter. "Aims of the Medieval Crusades and How They Were Viewed by Byzantium." Church History. 21.2 (1952): 126. Web. 21 Jul. 2013. .
[20] Frankopan, Peter. “The View From The East.” History Today 62.9 (2012): 34-45. World History Collection. Web. 20 July 2013.
[21] Munro, Dana C. "The Speech of Pope Urban II. At Clermont, 1095." American Historical Review. 11.2 (1906): 231. Web. 21 Jul. 2013.
[22] C. Munro, Dana, and Dana C. Munro. Urban and the Crusaders. 1. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania, 1895. 5-8. Print.
[23] C. Munro, Dana, and Dana C. Munro. Urban and the Crusaders. 1. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania, 1895. 5-8. Print.
[24] Frankopan, Peter. “The View From The East.” History Today 62.9 (2012): 38. Advanced Placement Source. Web. 24 July 2013.  
[25] McGill, Sara Ann. “Crusade Timeline.” Cruade Timeline (2009): 1. MAS Ultra – School Edition. Web. 24 July 2013.
[26] McGill, Sara Ann. “The First Crusade.” First Crusade (2009): 1. MAS Ultra –School Edition. Web. 24 July 2013.
[27] Asbridge, Thomas. The First Crusade: A New History. Oxford University Press, 2004. Print.
[28] Bradbury, Jim. The Routledge Companion to Medieval Warfare. New York: Routledge, 2004. 182. Print.
[29] Tyerman, Christopher. Chronicles of the First Crusade. London: Penguin UK, 2011. Print.
[30] Douglas, James. "Christians and the First Crusade." History Review. 53 (2005): 34-38. Print.
[31] Bull, Marcus. "The Pilgrimage Origins of the First Crusade." History Today. 47.3 (1997): 10. Print.
[32] Edgington, Susan. The First Crusade: The Capture of Jerusalem in AD 1099. 1st. New York: The Rosen Publishing Group, 2004. 6. Print.
[33] Douglas, James. "Christians and the First Crusade." History Review. 53 (2005): 34-38. Print.
[34] Prior Michael. "Holy Places, Unholy Domination: The Scramble for Jerusalem." Islamic Studies. 30.3 (2001): 514. Print. 
[35] P. Phillips, Jonathan. The First Crusade, 1097-1197. London: Pearson Education, 2002. 18. Print.
[36] Armstrong, Karen. "Crusade." A History of Jerusalem: One City, Three Faiths. London: Harper Perennial, 2005. 271-94. Print.
To what extent was religious duty a more popular reason than absolution or acquisition of wealth for bearing the Cross in the First Crusade?

Part A: Plan of Investigation

The intention of this investigation is to assess the reasons for which people chose to respond to Pope Urban II’s call to arms at Clermont on November 27th and embark on the First Crusade in 1096, and the years following.  This is a topic which has been readily studied for decades, and has produced a variety of theses, antitheses and syntheses, my objective is to review several of these arguments and produce a conclusion regarding whether or not the peoples’ sense of religious duty was truly a more influential reason for crusading in 1096, than the possibility of wealth acquisition. Prominent theories include the promise of penance and absolution of sins, religious duty, and the acquisition of new lands in the West. Much of the historiography surrounding the Crusades, including that of Jonathan Riley-Smith, points to religious duty as the reasoning adopted by the majority of crusaders.  The bulk of these theories can divided into two basic schools of thought, realism[1], humans are inherently selfish and would only embark on the dangerous crusade in self interest, and idealism[2], where humans are inherently good and would therefore risk their lives crusading out of religious duty.

Part B: Evidence

In 1090 there was a brutal massacre of Christians in Jerusalem by Fatimid Hakim[3]. In 1009 the Church of the Holy Sepulchure was nearly obliterated[4], and Christians were banned from visiting and praying there for eleven years thereafter[5]. In 1071 the Byzantine Empire lost a large sum of its territory known as Asia Minor, to the Turks, this significantly decreased the size of their empire[6]. During the eleventh century Gregory IV established the militia sancti Petri, a military devoted entirely to the Church. At this time there was no separation of Church and State, the Church and therefore the Pope was the supreme power. In the latter half of the decade preceding Urban II’s call to arms there had been a severe famine[7], affecting the livelihood of many peasants.  In what is now Spain, there had been fighting between the Spanish Christians[8]*2, and those they considered infidels for the majority of the century.  In March 1095 Emperor Alexius I requested aid from Pope Urban II in fighting the Seljuk Turks. Several months after Pope Urban II responds to Alexius saying he is willing to help and issues call to arms[9].

The bible states explicitly that Christians should “love thy neighbor”.[10] In 1095 Pope Urban II delivered a call to arms at Clermont, in response to Emperor Alexius’ request for aid in battle against the Seljuk Turks.[11] Urban II declared that anyone who took the cross would be absolved of all previous sins.[12]

Eustace II Count of Boulogne had three sons[13], of which Godfrey of Bullion was the second, and Baldwin was the third. Godfrey was made to receive a magnanimous inheritance from his father, whereas Baldwin, being the third son was not, he was due to spend his life working humbly within the Church though no tangible evidence has been found tying him to the Church, or with having any extraordinary affiliations with the Church[14]. Baldwin would have gained much land from going on crusade. Godfrey dies an untimely death in July of 1100; his inheritance and status is passed, subsequently, to Baldwin[15]. Baldwin is crowned king of Bullion; he becomes the first King of Bullion. [16]

Robert the monk incentivized[17] the people in his speech[18], “but if you are hindered by love of children, parents and wives, remember what the Lord says in the Gospel, "He that loveth father or mother more than me, is not worthy of me."[19] "Every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands for my name's sake shall receive an hundredfold and shall inherit everlasting life” and “on whom therefore is the labor of avenging these wrongs and of recovering this territory incumbent, if not upon you? You, upon whom above other nations God has conferred remarkable glory in arms, great courage, bodily activity, and strength to humble the hairy scalp of those who resist you.” And “that a race from the kingdom of the Persians, an accursed race, a race utterly alienated from God, a generation forsooth which has not directed its heart and has not entrusted its spirit to God, has invaded the lands of those Christians and has depopulated them by the sword, pillage and fire;”[20]
These are three very different approaches of persuasion yet they mention three of the prevalent reasons for crusading, and he is clearly attempting to appeal to a wide range of potential crusaders.

In the latter half of 1095, Pope Urban II gave a speech to the people, urging them to join his cause[21], appealing to their sense of religious duty in this quotation from Thomas Asbridge’s book, “The Roots of Conflict Between Christianity and Islam”,  “He called upon the warriors of the Latin West to avenge a range of ghastly ‘crimes’ committed against Christendom by the followers of Islam, urging them to bring aid to their eastern brethren and to conquer again the most sacred site on earth, the city of Jerusalem.”[22] Historian Steven Runciman, one of the most acclaimed historians of the Crusades regarded the First Crusade "as a barbarian invasion of a superior civilization, not that of the Muslims but of the Byzantines."[23]

Part C: Evaluation of Sources

Source One:  What Were the Crusades by Jonathan Riley-Smith

Jonathan Riley Smith, Professor of Ecclesiastical History at Cambridge University published his book “The Crusades, Christianity and Islam” in 2008, introducing an unique argument to the melting pot of theories regarding the motivation for people joining the First Crusade in 1096 and thereafter. The purpose of Riley- Smith’s book is to propose that the people were drawn into a “penitential warfare” out of love, stemming from the Christian concept of “love thy neighbour”, and persuade readers to believe religious duty and “love for thy” neighbour” were more influential reasons for going on Crusade than acquisition of wealth.  His arguments were “provocative”, using comparisons with the flammable recent event, the bombing of twin towers on 9.11., setting his book aside from drier accounts of the First Crusade. The valuable aspect of this book is that it offers a modern comparison with 9.11., and makes strong links between the ancient history of the Crusades, and contemporary events also rooted in conflict between Christianity and Islam; by making relevant comparisons, Riley-Smith’s evaluation is more thorough than a post-revisionist account which only looks at prior publications. Riley-Smith’s vague generalizations towards both the Islamic and Christian perspectives lower his credibility, thus acting as a limiting factor to the value of his publication as a source, as his conclusions can only be as accurate as the specificity and detail of his research and his understanding of the material.

Source Two: Speech by Pope Urban II at Clermont 1095*2

The speech given at Clermont in 1095 by Pope Urban II was the formal beginning of the Crusades, its purpose was to call forth people of various backgrounds and circumstances to venture on crusade in aid of Emperor Alexius, as a response to his earlier call to arms. The value of this source lies in that it is essentially, there are no external interpretations given by historians, momentarily setting aside the translation, and thus readers can determine for themselves the meaning, and importance of the source. Alternatively, the fact that many, if not all Crusade historians have studied and written about this speech suggests that by the consequence of its popularity it is a valuable source. Urban II’s speech was meant to persuade the people, particularly the peasant class to join the Crusade. This source is limited, however, in its accuracy as the speech was given nine centuries ago, and was only formally written down between 1100 and 1106. Reasonably, until the time of the documents publication, the contents of Urban II’s speech had been passed by word of mouth, and therefore subjected heavily to unintentional distortion.  Moreover, and perhaps most importantly, in terms of the speech’s limitations as a source, it has been translated into many languages since its delivery in 1095; the fact of the matter is, it was delivered in ancient Latin, and as consequence it would have had to be translated for historians to read it. Translations between languages can never be entirely accurate, ergo, the initial limitations of Pope Urban II’s speech at Clermont is it hasn’t been studied in its original language. Though it is unlikely this copy of the speech written by Fulcher of Chartes is an exact replication of Urban II’s speech, it is still a valuable insight into the types of words used to persuade people to embark on the perilous journey of the First Crusade.

Part D: Analysis

     Theories of the reasons which drove people from varying backgrounds to participate in the First Crusade can be divided, essentially, into two people of two schools of though, realism and idealism. Those believing in the idyllic “love thy neighbor” concept preached to them by the Church, were compelled, Riley-Smith argues, to undertake the brutal First Crusade to save their Christian brothers in the East. Erdmann offers a similar argument, but it follows a more realistic interpretation of human nature, that it was an act of revenge against Jerusalem and the Christians who were suffering under Alexius; their anger stemming from the fighting over The Church of the Holy Sepulchure a decade prior. The difference between the two historians’ beliefs is that Riley-Smith is arguing people are intrinsically good and willing to risk their lives in the pursuit of being good Christians, whereas Erdmann considers that crusaders used the excuse of “loving thy neighbor” to satisfy their own vengeful motives.
     The strongest counterclaim to Riley- Smith’s argument is in the imminent danger crusaders would have faced on their journey; people would have been, if Riley-Smith was correct, selflessly risking their lives, and the lives of their families for their fellow Christians across the world, an idea which goes against the most basic principles of human nature. Following a similar structure is the argument which claims the most prominent reason to crusade was the pursuit of total absolution. The grounds for this arguments lie within the fact that, due to the lack of separate of Church and State, people were deeply religious, and in the West, where Pope Urban II drew his crusaders from where devout Catholics. The sheer number of crusaders is enough to support the claims naming penance the reason.
     It is known people were religious, and thus were easily persuaded into risking their lives for absolution; essentially absolution was the best thing a person could obtain. The realistic counter argument to the previous argument is one which applies primarily to the knights who participated in the First Crusade, supported by historians Penny Cole and Hans Mayer; crusading offered a welcomed opportunity for knights to participate in the secular community. Killing, regarded as a sin under usual circumstances was allowed, and even rewarded during the Crusade, allowing the knightly class an opportunity to continue their gruesome occupation and simultaneously gain absolution for their previous less than savory acts. Respectively, both knights and peasants crusaded in the pursuit of absolution, but they are separated in that the peasants, Riley-Smith claims, crusaded in order to have their Christian souls saved, whereas the knights sought to be absolved of their murders.  The knights were, not unlike revenge-seeking crusaders, parading with the façade of Christian intent when their true motives were self-serving.
     The final group of people who were incentivized to bear the cross in 1095 were those who sought land acquisition and wealth in the east. In the conquering of new lands there is always the opportunity to increase ones one wealth by taking that of the conquered peoples. The inherently selfish nature of human is reason enough to substantiate the claims that crusading was a selfish act, however, the case study provided by Godfrey of Bullion, as the second son of Count Eustace II of Boulogne provides ample evidence for these claims.  Historians who believe the opportunity to gain wealth was a stronger driving force than religious pursuits to go on crusade belong to a more realistic school of thought; it does not, however, mean their reasoning was more widely followed than those arguments of their more idyllically minded counterparts.   


The academic discourse surrounding the motivations of the crusaders in 1095 is one of the longest standing historical debates, which is to say, there can never be any one answer. Realistically, all 35,000 (see David Nicolle, historian as source) members of the first crusade ventured out with the same reasoning in mind. Each historian puts forth reasonable arguments and at least one crusader must have used that line of reasoning thus verifying, to an extent their argument. When attempting to determine something as abstruse as the intention of one person’s line of reasoning towards embarking on something as dangerous as the First Crusade, there can never be definitive answers.  The people of the 11th Century decided to become, or not become, crusaders for whatever reasons applied directly to them, wealth, absolution, acceptance and so on. Riley-Smith’s arguments for a “crusade of love” is refreshingly optimistic considering the horror which was the First Crusade; like all theories, however, Riley-Smith’s stemmed from the fundamental principle of human nature being intrinsically good, or bad.

*2 Pope Urban II’s Speech at Clermont 1095
This account of Urban II's speech was written toward twenty-five years after Urban's visit to France and does not claim to give more than a general idea of the pope's arguments
In the year of our Lord's Incarnation one thousand and ninety-five, a great council was celebrated within the bounds of Gaul, in Auvergne, in the city which is called Clermont. Over this Pope Urban II presided, with the Roman bishops and cardinals. This council was a famous one on account of the concourse of both French and German bishops, and of princes as well. Having arranged the matters relating to the Church, the lord pope went forth into a certain spacious plain, for no building was large enough to hold all the people. The pope-then, with sweet and persuasive eloquence, addressed those present in words something like the following, saying:
"Oh, race of Franks, race from across the mountains, race beloved and chosen by God, - as is clear from many of your works,- set apart from all other nations by the situation of your country as well as by your Catholic faith and the honor which you render to the holy Church: to you our discourse is addressed, and for you our exhortations are intended. We wish you to know what a grievous cause has led us to your country, for it is the imminent peril threatening you and all the faithful which has brought us hither.
From the confines of Jerusalem and from the city of Constantinople a grievous report has gone forth and has -repeatedly been brought to our ears; namely, that a race from the kingdom of the Persians, an accursed race, a race wholly alienated from God, `a generation that set not their heart aright and whose spirit was not steadfast with God,' violently invaded the lands of those Christians and has depopulated them by pillage and fire. They have led away ap art of the captives into their own country, and a part have they have killed by cruel tortures. They have either destroyed the churches of God or appropriated them for the rites of their own religion. They destroy the altars, after having defiled them with their uncleanness....The kingdom of the Greeks is now dismembered by them and has been deprived of territory so vast in extent that it could be traversed in two months' time.
"On whom, therefore, is the labor of avenging these wrongs and of recovering this territory incumbent, if not upon you, you upon whom, above all other nations, God has conferred remarkable glory in arms, great courage, bodily activity, and strength to humble the heads of those who resist you ? Let the deeds of your ancestors encourage you and incite your minds to manly achievements:-the greatness of King Charlemagne, and of his son Louis, and of your other monarchs, who have destroyed the kingdoms of the Turks and have extended the sway of Church over lands previously possessed by the pagan. Let the holy sepulcher of our Lord and Saviour, which is possessed by unclean nations, especially arouse you, and the holy places which are now treated, with ignominy and irreverently polluted with the filth of the unclean. Oh, most valiant soldiers and descendants of invincible ancestors, do not degenerate; our progenitors., but recall the valor of your progenitors.
"But if you are hindered by love of children, parents, or of wife, remember what the Lord says in the Gospel, `He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me', 'Every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life.' Let none of your possessions retain you, nor solicitude for you, family affairs. For this land which you inhabit, shut in on all sides by the seas and surrounded by the mountain peaks, is too narrow for your large population; nor does it abound in wealth; and it furnishes scarcely food enough for its cultivators. Hence it is that you murder and devour one another, that you wage war, and that very many among you perish in intestine strife.'
[Another of those present at the Council of Clermont, Fulcher of Chartres, thus reports this part of Urban's speech: "Let those who have formerly been accustomed to contend wickedly in private warfare against the faithful fight against the infidel, and bring to a victorious end the war which ought already to have been begun. Let those who have hitherto been robbers now become soldiers. Let those who have formerly contended against their brothers and relatives now fight against the barbarians as they ought. Let those who have formerly been mercenaries at low wages now gain eternal rewards. Let those who have been exhausting themselves to the detriment both of body and soul now strive for a twofold reward" See a complete translation of Fulcher's report of Urban's speech in Translations and Reprints, Vol. 1. No. 2.]
"Let hatred therefore depart from among you, let your quarrels end, let wars cease, and let all dissensions and controversies slumber. Enter upon the road to the Holy Sepulcher-, wrest that land from the wicked race, and subject it to yourselves. That land which, as the Scripture says, `floweth with milk and honey' was given by God into the power of the children of Israel. Jerusalem is the center of the earth ; the land is fruitful above all others, like another paradise of delights. This spot the Redeemer of mankind has made illustrious by his advent, has beautified by his sojourn, has consecrated by his passion, has redeemed by his death, has glorified by his burial.
"This royal city, however, situated at the center of the earth, is now held captive by the enemies of Christ and is subjected, by those who do not know God, to the worship the heathen. She seeks, therefore, and desires to be liberated and ceases not to implore you to come to her aid. From you especially she asks succor, because as we have already said, God has conferred upon you above all other nations great glory in arms. Accordingly, undertake this journey eagerly for the remission of your sins, with the assurance of the reward of imperishable glory in the kingdon of heaven.."
When Pope Urban had urbanely said thes and very similar things, he so centered in one purpose the desires all who were present that all cried out, " It is the will of God! I It is the. will of God 1 " When the venerable Roman pontiff heard that, with eyes uplifted to heaven, he gave thanks to God and, commanding silence with his hand, said:
"Most beloved brethren, today is manifest in you what the Lord says in the Gospel, `Where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them'; for unless God had been present in your spirits, all of you would not have uttered the same cry; since, although the cry issued from numerous mouths, yet the origin of the cry as one. Therefore I say to you that God, who implanted is in your breasts, has drawn it forth from you. Let that then be your war cry in combats, because it is given to you by God. When an armed attack is made upon the enemy, this one cry be raised by all the soldiers of God: 'It is the will of God! It is the will of God!' [Deus vult! Deus Vult!]
"And ee neither command nor advise that the old or those incapable of bearing arms, undertake this journey. Nor ought women to set out at all without their husbands, or brother, or legal guardians. For such are more of a hindrance than aid, more of a burden than an advantage. Let the rich aid the needy and according to their wealth let them take with them experienced soldiers. The priests and other clerks, whether secular or regulars are not to go without the consent of their bishop; for this journey would profit them nothing if they went without permission. Also, it is not fitting that laymen should enter upon the pilgrimage without the blessing of their priests.
"Whoever, therefore, shall determine upon this holy pilgrimage, and shall make his vow to God to that effect, and shall offer himself to him for sacrifice, as a living victim, holy and acceptable to God, shall wear the sign of the cross of the Lord on his forehead or on his breast. When, indeed, he shall return from his journey, having fulfilled his vow, let him place the cross on his back between his shoulders. Thus shall ye, indeed, by this twofold action, fulfill the precept of the Lord, as lie commands in the Gospel, 'he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me."'

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[21] Munro, Dana Carleton. "The Speech of Pope Urban II. At Clermont, 1095." The American Historical Review 11.2 (1906): 231. Web.
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