The Crusades: History and Main Points

Many of the crusaders arrived in the Holy Land on foot, as keeping a horse was outside the reach of many knights. The soldiers that the crusaders confronted, however, were mainly cavalry trained in the legacy of Turkic horsemen. While the early triumphs of the crusaders who set up the Latin states called Outremer were based on the element of surprise and lack of agreement, over time, the opposing Muslim forces and the environment in the eastern Mediterranean required major changes that in turn affected warfare in Europe as well. Later on, they started to use carthorses which was a large, strong horse suitable for heavy work.  By the time of the First Crusade in the 1090s, the cavalry charge was being employed widely by European armies.

Horse Armour

Horse armour gradually developed by the 14th century. During the times of the crusades, horses wore only a caparison which was an attractive covering spread over a horse's saddle or harness., a coat of cloth similar to a knight's surcoat. It would bear the coat of arms of the knight and may have been padded or quilted to give the horse extra protection. By the mid-13th century, mail was regularly worn by the horse under the caparison


A crusader soldier of the First Crusade typically wore heavier Armor consisting of a coat with metal scales...In the First Crusade, all you needed was a Chain Hauberk and a Spangenhelm then you were armoured and ready to go to battle.


The crusaders used coifs which where a head to neck chain coverings the face and neck it only shows your eyes nose and mouth. Some of their headgear contained of Chapel-de-fer war-hats which looked like a fire fighters hat with a neck and chin covering, they were a type of wide brimmed metal hat. It was more suited to the climate than the conical shaped helmets conical means having the shape of a cone. with nose guards that were common throughout much of the crusades. However, the helmets were useful for battle; the conical shape was the most useful defence for the head since it would leave a sideways surface for the downward stroke of an attack. Other headgear included close fitting round helmets, 'kettle hats' or broad brimmed flat iron hats, and arming caps which could be worn under the helmet or individually. By the late-13th century the Great Helm had been developed. This helm included a face guard and neck guard which gave it a tube – shaped form with a flat top.

Arms and Legs

Mail leggings, called chausses which could extend to the knee or cover the entire leg. . Poleyns a kind of protective kneecap laced on from behind, also served this purpose.


The shields of the crusaders were generally three – sided in shape. The kite-shaped shield was in use for much of the Crusades, though some people preferred a flat top. The guige is a long strap, typically made of leather, used to hang a shield on the shoulder or neck when not in use.


Overall, the first crusade began when a request from the Byzantine Emperor Alexios I Komnenon to Pope Urban II requested for military assistance to prevent the invading Turks from taking additional Christian lands. In response Pope Urban II called for a crusade in 1095 CE, he sent for 25000 to 30000 soldiers from France, Normandy, and Sicily they were forced to promise to give the Emperor of Constantinople all rights to conquered land in exchange for boats. announcing that killing of enemies of Christianity was not a sin and was in fact a holy deed how crazy is that. On the 15th July 1099 they successfully entered Jerusalem by this time they had lost over 150,000 people including knights, children, women, and men. Later in 1099 CE the first crusade ended, and 700,000 people had died “but as we all know any death is a loss to everyone, especially the family and friends of the crusaders”.

07 July 2022
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