THE CRUSADES, 1095-1274 HIST4029

  • Academic Session: 2015-16
  • School: School of Humanities
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

What made men and women take the Cross to travel thousands of miles by sea or across inhospitable terrain to fight God's war against the infidel? How did they prepare for this venture, financially, materially and spiritually? What was the impact of their departure upon the West, for their families, neighbours and co-religionists? These and many other questions are addressed in this module, which places particular emphasis on how Crusades emerged from (and profoundly changed) western thinking on peace and violence, from the time of the First Crusade down to the Second Council of Lyons. We explore the origins of crusades, how crusade was preached, financed and organised, and how crusading itself evolved over the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. This course will be of particular interest to those interested in crusading as a mass movement of religious enthusiasm in the medieval west.


Twice weekly

Requirements of Entry

normal entry requirements to Honours

Excluded Courses





Essay: 20% (2000 words approximately), Seminar work: 10% (seminar paper 6% and seminar contribution 4%), Examination: 70% (120 minutes duration)

Main Assessment In: April/May

Course Aims

The aims common to all the Department's Honours modules are as follows:
1. the development of the intellectual interests and analytical skills acquired by students during their first two years.
2. awareness of previously unfamiliar methodological approaches, chronological periods and geographical areas by offering a wide and flexible choice of options.
3. to offer the opportunity to develop skills in historical computing, as well as basic IT awareness.
4. familiarity with complex historical debates and interpretations, skill in interpreting primary sources where appropriate, and to inform these discussions with new ideas derived from lecturers' current research.
5. the development of transferable skills by fostering individual initiative, personal choice, group discussion and, where appropriate, problem-solving teamwork.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

Having completed this particular module, student should be able to:


(i) demonstrate an ability to understand the development of Crusade and the crusading movement in Western society from the Second Crusade to the Second Council of Lyons;


(ii) demonstrate how to evaluate historians' opinions and form your own through your reading of selected primary sources in translation and the secondary literature relating to the subject;

(iii) demonstrate how to lead and participate in seminar discussions devoted to selected primary and secondary sources, and to assess orally and on paper specified historical problems