The Oxford Illustrated History of the Crusades

The Oxford Illustrated History of the Crusades

by Jonathan Riley-Smith
     
 

This richly illustrated book presents a readable, authoritative, and comprehensive history of the Crusades, from the preaching of the First Crusade in 1095 to the legacy of crusading ideals and imagery today. Written by a team of leading Crusade scholars, it covers crusading in many different theatres of war. The ideas of apologists, propagandists, and poets, and the… See more details below

Overview

This richly illustrated book presents a readable, authoritative, and comprehensive history of the Crusades, from the preaching of the First Crusade in 1095 to the legacy of crusading ideals and imagery today. Written by a team of leading Crusade scholars, it covers crusading in many different theatres of war. The ideas of apologists, propagandists, and poets, and the perceptions and motives of the crusaders themselves are described, as are the reactions of the Muslims to Christian holy war. The book highlights the remarkable art and architecture associated with the Crusades, and offers fascinating insights into the history of the knightly orders, such as the Knights Templar and the Knights of St John. The volume includes detailed reference material: maps, chronology, a guide to further reading, and a full index. It will be welcomed by anyone interested in the ideals and history of the Crusades.

Editorial Reviews

Gilbert Taylor
In 1095 Pope Urban II granted absolutions to whomever would reclaim the Holy Land for Christendom. With that assurance began two centuries of Crusades, and the story, in contemporary chronicles, artwork, and castellated ruins, is well treated in this interpretation of the movement to take up the cross. The subject has stirred from historiographical dormancy, says editor Riley-Smith, who ably introduces the definitional questions--What is a Crusade? Who became a Crusader?--and then turns the chapters over to a dozen specialists. They analyze in detail the complex religious, economic, and military aspects, emphasizing the immediate instigation of one Crusade or another--often a Muslim counter-Crusade like Saladin's recapture of Jerusalem in 1187--while reiterating the profound piety and concern for salvation on which the whole process rested. It seems an odd combination of compassion and conquest, aptly expressed in knightly orders such as Hospitallers or the Teutonic Order, so elusive to the modern sensibility. These historians, though, dissolve that psychological barrier, interpreting what impelled the pilgrims, the Muslim reaction, and the political course of holy conflict up through the fall of the last Crusader polity--Malta--in 1798.
From the Publisher

"In 1095 Pope Urban II granted absolutions to whomever would reclaim the Holy Land for Christendom. With that assurance began two centuries of Crusades, and the story, in contemporary chronicles, artwork, and castellated ruins, is well treated in this interpretation of the movement to take up the cross."Booklist

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780198204350
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
07/01/1997
Series:
Oxford Illustrated Histories Series
Edition description:
ILLUSTRATE
Pages:
472
Product dimensions:
10.00(w) x 7.81(h) x 1.34(d)

Meet the Author

About the Editor:
Jonathan Riley-Smith is Dixie Professor of Ecclesiastical History at the University of Cambridge and is one of the world's leading authorities on the Crusades. His previous publications include The The Atlas of the Crusades and The Crusades: A Short History.

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