First English edition of the Nuremberg chronicle: being the Liber chronicarum of Dr. Hartmann Schedel…
An Expedition for the Relief of Jerusalem Made in the time of Pope Urban the Second in the Year 1094.

In the time of Pope Urban, after the Council of Clermont was held, the Christian princes in Gaul were so impressed by the eloquent sermon of said pope, admonishing them to recover the city of Jerusalem which had been held by the Saracens for a long time, that all cried out, as with a single voice, God wills it! God wills it! While the pope with his bishops and prelates was considering the choice of a leader for the army, thousands of persons caused themselves to be marked with the cross, and took up arms. In a few months three hundred thousand persons had joined the crusade, and were on their way to Constantinople. The first leader of the host was Peter, called the Hermit.

Peter the Hermit, a priest of Amiens, is said to have been present at Urban’s famous sermon at Clermont in 1095. He was one of the preachers of the crusade in France after that sermon, and his own experience may have helped to fire his eloquence. He was an emotional revivalist preacher, and thousands of peasants took up the cross at his bidding. The crusade of the paupers, which forms the first act of the First Crusade, was his work; and he himself led one of the five sections of the paupers to Constantinople, starting from Cologne in April and arriving at Constantinople by the end of July 1096. Here he joined the only other section which had succeeded in reaching Constantinople – that of Walter the Penniless; and he crossed the Asiatic shore in the beginning of August. In spite of his warnings, the paupers began hostilities against the church; and Peter returned to Constantinople.

In Peter’s absence, the army was cut to pieces by the Turks, and he was left in Constantinople without any followers during the winter of 1096-1097, waiting for the coming of the princes. He joined their ranks in May 1097, and marched with them through Asia Minor to Jerusalem. But he played a very subordinate part in the history of the First Crusade. He appears, in the beginning of 1098, as attempting to escape from the privations of the siege of Antioch – showing himself a “fallen star.” In the middle of the year he was sent by the princes to invite Kerbogha to settle all differences by a dual. In 1099 he appears as treasurer of the Alms at the siege of Acra, and as leader of the supplicatory processions in Jerusalem which preceded the battle of Ascalon. At the end of the year he went to Laodicea, and sailed west. It is said that he died in 1151, as prior of a church of the Holy Sepulchre that he founded in France.

With many people he proceeded through Germany and Hungary. He was joined by three mighty counts, namely, Godfrey (Gothefridus)

Godfrey of Bouillon (c. 1060-1100) was a leader in the First Crusade. He was the second son of Eustace II, count of Lower Lorraine. Lorraine had been penetrated by Cluniac influences, and Godfrey would seem to have been a man of noble piety. Accordingly, though he had himself served as an imperialist, and though the Germans in general had little sympathy with the crusaders, Godfrey, nevertheless, when the call came to follow Christ, almost literally sold all that he had and followed it.

Along with his brothers Eustace and Baldwin (the future Baldwin of Jerusalem), Godfrey led a German contingent some 40,000 strong through Hungary to Constantinople, arriving there in November 1095, the first of the crusading princes to the get there. On him, therefore, fell the duty of deciding what the relations of the princes to the eastern emperor Alexius were to be. Eventually he did homage to Alexius in January 1097, and his example was followed by the other princes. From this time until the beginning of 1099, Godfrey appears as one of the minor princes, while men like Bohemund, Raymond, Baldwin and Tancred were determining the course of events.

In 1099 Godfrey came to the front once more. The majority of the crusaders were weary of the political factions which divided some of their leaders, and Godfrey became the natural representative of this feeling. He was thus able to force the reluctant Raymond to march southward to Jerusalem; and he took a prominent part in the siege, his division being the first to enter when the city was captured. It was natural that Godfrey should be elected ruler of Jerusalem (July 22nd, 1099); but the new dignity proved more onerous than honorable, and during his short reign of a year he had to combat the Arabs of Egypt, and the opposition of Raymond, and the patriarch Dagobert. He repelled the Egyptian attack at Ascalon but failed to acquire the town after the battle. Godfrey died in July 1100. Because he had been the first ruler in Jerusalem he was idolized in later saga. He was depicted as the leader of the crusades, the king of Jerusalem, the legislator who laid down the assizes of Jerusalem; but he was none of these things. Bohemund was the most energetic leader of the crusades; Baldwin was the first king; the assizes developed gradually. In reality he would seem to have been a quiet, pious, hard-fighting knight who was chosen to rule in Jerusalem because he had no dangerous qualities and no obvious defects.

, Eustace (Eustachius)[Eustace was the name of four counts of Boulogne, France. The one here referred to was probably Eustace III, who went on crusade in 1096, and died about 1125.], and Baldwin (Baldvinus)

Baldwin I (1058-1118), first king of Jerusalem (1100-18), was the brother of Godfrey of Bouillon. He was originally a clerk in the orders and held several prebends; but in 1096 he jointed the First Crusade, accompanying his brother Godfrey as far as Heraclea in Asia Minor. When Tancred, nephew of Bohemund, who had also taken up the Cross in 1096, left the main body of the crusaders at Heraclea, and marched into Cilicia, Baldwin followed, partly in jealousy, partly from the same political motives which animated Tancred. Incidentally it must be noted that Tancred had refused to take an oath to Alexius, the emperor at Constantinople, and had escaped across the Bosphorus in the disguise of a peasant; but after the capture of Nicaea, he followed the example of the other princes, and became the man of Alexius; and so at Heraclea in the center of Asia Minor, he left the main body of the crusaders, and struck into Cilicia, closely followed by Baldwin of Lorraine, as stated. Tancred had made himself master of Tarsus, but Baldwin wrested it from his grip in 1097. After rejoining the main army at Marash, Baldwin received an invitation from an Armenian named Pakrad, and moved eastward toward the Euphrates, where he occupied Tell-bashir. He proceeded to Edessa, succeeded its ruler, who had been assassinated, and governed it for two years (1098-1100). He married an Armenian wife and became the intermediary between the crusaders and the Armenians. At the end of 1099, he visited Jerusalem to succeed his brother and became the first king of Jerusalem, being crowned by the patriarch himself on Christmas Day 1100.

As Baldwin had secured the supremacy in Jerusalem, so he extended into a compact kingdom the straggling territories to which he had succeeded. Arsuf and Caesarea were captured in 1101; Acre in 1104; Beirut and Sidon in 1110, while in the meantime Baldwin repelled in successive years the attacks of the Egyptians, and in the latter years of his reign, pushed southward at the expense of Egypt, penetrating as far as the Red Sea. In the north he had to compose the dissensions of the Christian princes in Tripoli, Antioch, and Edessa, and to help them maintain their ground against the Muslim princes of northwest Syria. In this way Baldwin was able to make himself the practical suzerain of the three Christian principalities of the north, though the suzerainty was always somewhat nominal. Baldwin died in 1118, after an expedition to Egypt, during which he captured Farama, and, as old Fuller says, caught many fish, and his death in eating them.

Baldwin was one of the adventurers of the First Crusade, and as such he stands alongside Bohemund, Tancred, and Raymond. On the whole he was the most successful of his class. By his defense of the lay power against a nascent theocracy, and by his alliance with the Italian towns, he was the real founder of the Latin kingdom of Jerusalem.

, and they marched with the same host. But the mighty princes and the nobility, the bishop or Padua as chief of the crusade; also Hugh (Hugo) the Great, the brother of the French King Philip, and counts Raymond (Raymundus), Robert and Stephen (Stephanus), together with many other distinguished counts and nobles, marched through Italy in three divisions. And there was also on the way an army of twelve thousand select young Italian warriors under Bohemund (Boemundus)[Bohemund is the name of a series of princes of Antioch, afterwards counts of Tripoli. Bohemund I (c. 1058-1111) prince of Otranto, and afterwards of Antioch, was the eldest son of Robert Guiscard, and served under his father in the great attack on the Eastern Roman empire (1080-85), and commanded the Normans during Guiscard’s absence, penetrating into Thessaly, but being repulsed by Alexius Comnenus. This early hostility to Alexius had a great influence upon his future career, and helped to determine the history of the First Crusade. When in 1096 the crusaders began to pass through Italy to Constantinople, Bohemund joined them. He gathered a Norman army and penetrated to Constantinople, where he did homage to the emperor. From Constantinople to Antioch he was the real leader of the First Crusade. He took a great part in the siege of Antioch (1097-98), beating off the Muslim attempts at relief from the east, and connecting the besiegers on the west with the port of St. Simeon and the Italian ships which lay there. The capture of Antioch was due to his connection with Firuz, one of the commanders in the city; but he would not bring matters to an issue until the possession of the city was assured him, under the terror of the approach of Kerbogha with a great army of relief, and with a reservation in favor of Alexius, if Alexius should fulfill his promise to aid the Crusaders. But Bohemund was not secure in his possession of Antioch, even after its surrender and the defeat of Kerbogha; he had to make good his claims against Raymond of Toulouse, whom he had alienated, and who was now the ally of Alexius. He obtained full possession in 1099. It might seem in 1100 that Bohemund was destined to found a great principality in Antioch, for he had a fine territory, a good strategic position and a strong Roman empire, which claimed his territories and was supported in its claim by Raymond of Toulouse, and the strong Muslim principalities in Syria; and between these two forces he failed. In 1100 he was captured by Danishmend of Sivas, and he languished in prison till 1103. His nephew Tancred took his place; meanwhile Raymond established himself with the aid of Alexius in Tripoli, and was able to check the expansion of Antioch to the south. Bohemund was ransomed in 1103 by the generosity of an Armenian prince, but again suffered defeat. Despairing of his own resources he returned to Europe for reinforcement. He married Constance, daughter of Philip I of France, and collected a large army; but instead of defending Antioch, he attacked Alexius, who, aided by the Venetians, defeated him and compelled him to submit to a humiliating peace by which be became the vassal of Alexius. He was buried at Canossa in Apuleia, in 1111.]. When said Peter arrived at Constantinople with his people, and had encamped in the environs, he was unable to restrain his men from attacking Constantinople, or from stealing sacred objects. On that account Alexius, the emperor of Constantinople, was moved to compel Peter and his people to promptly retire from there. So Peter proceeded first to Nicomedia, and there besieged the well protected city of Nicaea

Nicaea, or Nicea (modern Isnik), one of the most celebrated cities of Asia Minor, in Bithynia, on Lake Ascania, was built by Antigonus about 316 BCE on an old deserted site. Soon afterward Lysimachus changed its name from Antigonia to Nicaea, calling it after his wife. Under the Roman Empire Nicaea and Nicomedia disputed the title of Metropolis of Bithynia. Strabo describes the ancient Nicaea as regularly built, in the form of a square, with a gate in the middle of each side. From the monument in the center of the city all the four gates were visible at the extremities of great cross streets. After Constantinople became the capital of the empire, Nicaea grew in importance, and after the conquest of Constantinople by the crusaders, it became the temporary seat of the Byzantine emperor; the double line of walls with the Roman gates is still well preserved. The possession of the city was long disputed between the Greeks and the Turks. It remained an important city for some time after its final incorporation into the Ottoman Empire; but subsequently became an insignificant village.

Nicaea is very famous in ecclesiastical history as the seat of the great Ecumenical Council, which Constantine convoked in 325 CE, chiefly for the decision of the Arian controversy, and which drew up the Nicene Creed; that is to say, the first part of the well known creed, so called, the latter part of which was added by the Council of Constantinople, in the year 381. The Council of Nicaea also settled the time of keeping Easter, and a second Council held here in 787 decided in favor of the worship of images. In the very year of the great Council, Nicaea was severely damaged by an earthquake; but it was restored by the emperor Valens in 368. Under the later emperors of the East, Nicaea long served as the bulwark of Constantinople against the Arabs and the Turks. It was taken by the Seljuks in 1078, and became the capital of the Sultan Suleiman. It was retaken by the First Crusaders in 1097. After the taking of Constantinople by the Venetians and the Franks, and the foundation of the Latin empire there in 1204, the Greeks made Nicaea the capital of a separate kingdom. In 1330 the city was finally taken by Orchan, son of the founder of the Ottoman empire, Othman.

, which the Turks, in anticipation of the Christians, had fortified and provided with a large number of men and with every necessity to withstand a siege. But since the besiegers failed to secure accretions to their forces, and the knights fell away one by one, and the Christians were disappointed in their expectations, they were compelled to give up the siege; and in their retreat they suffered such a defeat that Reinald (Raynaldus), the German leader, denied the Christian faith, and together with his warriors, surrendered to the infidels, while Peter returned to Constantinople. But Bohemund, through threats and promises, prevailed upon Emperor Alexius to permit him to proceed through the empire; and so the Christians again came to the city of Nicaea; but it was difficult to capture, for access was