'O day so ardently desired! O time of times the most memorable! O deed before all other deeds!'
The fall of Jerusalem in the summer of 1099 to an exhausted and starving army of western European soldiers was one of the most extraordinary events of the Middle Ages. It was both the climax of a great wave of visionary Christian fervour and the beginning of what proved to be a futile and abortive attempt to implant a new European kingdom of heaven in an overwhelmingly Muslim world. This remarkable collection brings together a wide variety of contemporary accounts of the First Crusade, including Pope Urban II's initial call to arms of 1095, as well as the first-hand writings of priests, knights, a Jewish pilgrim, a destitute noblewoman, an Iraqi poet and the historian Anna Comnena. Together they provide a vivid and nuanced picture of the First Crusade and the people who were swept up in it.
Christopher Tyerman's introduction to this volume details the religious and historical background to the First Crusade, its legacy and the sources for our knowledge of it. This edition also includes a chronology, maps and further reading.
Edited with an introduction and notes by CHRISTOPHER TYERMAN
Of all the modern histories of the crusades it is the shrewdest, the most reliable and the most complete [Praise for God's War] - The Spectator
Christopher Tyerman is a Fellow and Tutor in History at Hertford College, Oxford and Lecturer in Medieval History at New College Oxford. He has written extensively on the crusades, most recently God's War: A New History of the Crusades (2006) and The Debate on the Crusades (2011).