This dissertation will investigate the causes and consequences of Pope Urban II’s call to crusade at Clermont in 1095. It will use five major contemporary accounts of Urban’s sermon to support the thesis that religious ideology was integral to both the inception and the aftermath of his enterprise. The methodological approach taken in this project will foreground the eyewitness accounts of Fulcher of Chartres and the anonymously composed Gesta Francorum, alongside three histories of his speech which were written by the French Benedictine historians Robert the Monk, Baldric of Dol and Guilbert of Nogent. These sources have been attached within the appendix, as they form the core points of reference on which the main thesis of this study revolves around. In accompaniment to these primary texts, I will also be using secondary literature from some of the field’s most renowned present-day historians, namely Tyerman, Riley-Smith, Asbridge and Phillips to further substantiate my arguments. My debate will span a total of two chapters, with the first examining the causes of Urban’s call to crusade and how this was primarily influenced by religiosity. The second chapter will then examine the consequences of the pope’s speech, exploring how the very same spiritually-infused ideology which first inspired Urban’s call to crusade at Clermont not only resulted in the successful liberation of Jerusalem in 1099, but also shaped the course of Christian Outremer in the decades which followed. Ultimately, this dissertation will be concluded by drawing together the findings I have made in these two chapters, demonstrating how religion above all else was the driving influence of Pope Urban II’s crusade.
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