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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 35

Ch. I THE LEGAL AND POLITICAL THEORY OF THE CRUSADE 35 
pay an exorbitant tribute. The two laws resembled each other in limiting
strictly any public celebration of the religion of the other, and the erection
of places of worship. On the other hand, Christians under Islamic rule were
not subjected to compulsory preaching of the dominant religion, as happened
in the reverse case. Jihãd might be declared against Moslem heretics
and rebels, so that if, as the popes claimed, Moslems "judaized" in declaring
pork unclean, the popes themselves "islamicized" in declaring a crusade against
heretics (such as the Albigensians) or against those who rebelled against
their authority (the most distinguished of whom was the emperor Frederick
II). Differences of detail are fewer than points of resemblance, and in any
case do not obscure the close similarity of general outline.61 
 Besides the uncanny resemblances in many details, there is an overall consonance
between Moslem and Christian ideas of holy war. The idea of jihdd as spiritual
struggle is much to the fore of the minds of modern Moslem theologians, and
in the modern world Christians speak loosely of any good endeavor of any
magnitude as a "crusade". The concept of jihdd has not loosened quite to
the same extent in Islam, but it is certainly used to define what Christians
still call a "just war". It is as a theology of just war that the two ideas
come closest. Even the requirement of using right means (modus debitus) which
developed rather later in Christendom, and the idea of double effect which
permits the incidental death of the innocent, are parallel to Islamic rules.
We have seen that the crusade from its inception was considered the just
war par excellence, the war which would end all other kinds of war, though
in fact in time it led on to an infinite number of "just wars" and crusades
for this and that alleged good end. Here we return to the starting point.
Both jihãd and crusade were designed to lead to that state of perfect
peace where the world is under the rule of true religion, and the conversion
of a barely tolerated remnant is imminent. 
 It is extremely unlikely that there was an actual Islamic influence on the
Christian canons. There is no vestige or echo of specific knowledge of the
Islamic law of jihãd in any medieval writing; still less are there
specific references to it, translations, questions, or discussions. In writing
theology and even history there is no reticence about the use of Moslem sources,
and this silence makes it certain that there was no explicit influence of
Moslem jurisprudence. References do occur 
 61. Cf. Encyclopedia of Isldm, vol. I (Leyden, 1908), rev. ed., vol. II
(Leyden, 1965), s.v. "djiMd"; Majid Khadduri, War and Peace in the Law of
Islam (Baltimore, 1955). 


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