What are the dangers and
rewards of going on a Crusade?
You are a squire in England. The knight you serve has decided to join a Christian Crusade (a
holy war) to capture the city of Jerusalem from the Muslims. He has given you the choice of
joining or staying home to look after his family and manor. On an earlier Crusade, the knight
and his friends looted towns and manors, taking jewels and precious objects. But some of the
knights were also held for ransom, robbed, and murdered. You are torn between the desire for
adventure and possible riches that you might find on the Crusade, and fear of the hazards that
await you on such a dangerous journey.
What reasons might an individual have to join a Crusade?
What might be the advantages and disadvantages of staying
home to defend the knight’s family and estate?
As a class, discuss these questions. In your discussion, remember
what you’ve learned about the power of religious beliefs to move
people to action. As you read about the Crusades in this chapter,
see how events turned out for the Crusaders.
Richard the Lion-Hearted
leads a group of Crusaders on
the Third Crusade to regain
Jerusalem from the Muslims.
Servants and women
sometimes accompanied the
Crusaders as they made their
way toward the Holy Land.