What were the Crusades? | Live Science

The Crusades were a series of religious wars initiated in 1095 by the Roman Catholic Church. They continued, in various forms, for centuries. The most well-known Crusades took place between 1095 and 1291 in the Near East, where European Christian armies attempted to recover the city of Jerusalem from Islamic rule. 

There were other Crusades against Muslims in Iberia and against pagans and fellow Christians in Europe whom the Catholic Church deemed heretical. After the First Crusade (1095-1099) was launched by Pope Urban II, the large areas of the Holy Land were occupied by European Crusader States, as well as military orders such as the Knights Templar. By the end of the 18th century the Crusades had all but ended, leaving Europe and the Near East forever changed. 

When were the Crusades?

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