University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
The History Collection

Page View

Zacour, N. P.; Hazard, H. W. (ed.) / The impact of the Crusades on Europe
(1989)

I: The Legal and Political Theory of the Crusade,   pp. 3-38 PDF (14.2 MB)


Page 8

r 
 8 A HISTORY OF THE CRUSADES VI 
 plundering of monks and clerics and nuns and their servants, and of pilgrims
and merchants; his account condemns kidnappers, burners of houses, and all
who consent to their crimes, but claims that private wars and lawlessness
will be brought to an end by unity in fighting the Turkish and Arab invaders
of the east: "May those who used to fight against their brothers and their
families now justly (rite) war against the barbarians." In practice this
would not end savagery, but as well turn it against the external enemy. "Let
hatreds cease among you" meant "hate the enemy"; the theme was prominent
in what came to be accepted as Urban's argument, as tendered, for example,
by William of Malmesbury and, in due course, by William of Tyre, and the
best clerical tradition in the crusading state.'4 In Monte Cassino the monks
held that Urban enabled the lords to do penance by crusading, without having
to admit publicly that they were doing so. The idea of the crusade as a penance
naturally follows from its being a good work, literally a pilgrimage. We
can illustrate the originality of this complex of attitudes by the fact that,
once the idea of the crusade was enunciated, it was extended to older areas
of conflict. The privileges (and often the opportunities for legal penance)
were extended to the war in Spain, though not uninterruptedly or as fully
as in the war in the east. As of 1100, we can define the just war as a defense,
a restoration of rights, a resistance to aggression and cruelty, a substitute
for wicked internecine warfare, a penance for rapine and lawlessness, and
finally, a Christian way of life. 
 Urban brought existing ideas together; they were not yet precisely defined,
but all the ideas of the crusade that developed later were present in some
form or other. 
B. Indulgences and the Holy IVar 
 The systematization of canon law relating to the different aspects of holy
war, including indulgences, is best studied in its final form in the decretal
collections. We may glance in passing at Bernard of Clair 
14. Fuicheri Carnotensis historia Hierosolymitana, ed. Heinrich Hagenmeyer
(Heidelberg, 
1913), I, 1 (pp. 119—123); William of Malmesbury, De gestis regum,
ed. William Stubbs (Rolls Series, 90), II, 393 if.; William of Tyre, Historia
rerum in partibus transmarinis gestarum, I, 15 (RHC, 0cc., I, 39—42);
cf. ibid., I, 7 (pp. 21—25). 


Go up to Top of Page