In 1187, Sultan Saladin of Egypt captured Jerusalem and, as a result, revived the relatively dormant enthusiasm for crusading. As was the case during the Second Crusade, a large fleet of crusaders from the lower ranks of the nobility and the merchant casts of the Anglo-Norman domains, the Rhineland, Flanders, Friesland and elsewhere in northern Europe heeded the call for a Crusade proclaimed by Pope Gregory VIII and organised by his successor Pope Clement III. This article explains why so many low-ranking crusaders decided to travel by sea to the Holy Land during the Third Crusade and the consequences for Portugal. Also, it considers why, after half a century of relative inactivity of the northern European crusaders in Iberia, these new contingents understood the importance of the wars there, within the revived crusading ideology of the period.
The article can be downloaded here.
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