Intro Truths
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Moslems and Crusaders—Study Aids

Saints and Heroes #6
Moslems and Crusaders
covers events leading up to the Reformation, including the Avignon Papacy, the Western Schism, Renaissance Italy, the Spanish Inquisition, and the Protestant Revolt in Germany, Switzerland, and Britain.
[600 to 1600 A.D.]

Information Pages

These pages summarize much of the material needed to study for the Moslems and Crusaders review questions. Most are derived from a variety of histories, saint dictionaries, and other public domain sources. For this unit we found it useful to group topics that occurred over many centuries into a single unit in order to emphasize the common theme of Islam vs. Christian conflict.

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East-West Conflicts and Schism
Early Conquests of Islam
Christian Reconquest of Spain
Seljuk Turks and Crusaders
Ottomon Turks in Europe
Religious Orders Opposed to Islam
Facts About Islam

Printable Homework Questions

Recommended Reading

The following books each have chapters that cover the history of Islam, before, during, and after the time period considered by the Moslems and Crusaders unit (636 to 1500 A.D.). Recommended reading assignments on topics of interest are indicated.


Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam and the Crusades by Robert Spencer
The bestselling Politically Incorrect Guide series provides an unvarnished, unapologetic overview of controversial topics every American should understand. The Politically Incorrect Guide to Jihad pulls apart the dark world of radical Islam, exposing the inner-workings and motivations of the most violent menace of the 21st century.

Reading Recommendation: part II: The Crusades, Chaps 10-14, pp 119-180

God's Battalions: The Case for the Crusades by Rodney Stark
This book puts to rest the misguided notion that the Crusades were an unprovoked attack on Muslims by Christians. In fact, the Islamic world had been violently expanding into Christian territories for centuries and if the Crusades had not been launched, all of Europe would have been at risk. Furthermore, this book is invaluable for dispelling the belief that the West was wholly backwards prior to its contact with the Islamic world during the Crusades. The knowledge of the Islamic world was cultivated largely by Christians living in their territories who did not convert to Islam after being conquered. Also, Western Europe had made considerable advancements in science and technology since the fall of the Roman Empire. Had that not been the case, the Crusaders surely would not have been able to conquer Jerusalem on their very first attempt.

Islam at the Gates by Diane Moczar
Historian Diane Moczar pulls back the curtain on one of the most important acts in the drama of Muslim aggression against the West: the 500-year-long siege of Europe by the Ottoman Turks. Tracing the rise of the Turkish people from wandering Asian tribe to mighty pan-continental empire, Islam at the Gates chronicles the heroes and villains, the battles and atrocities, the tragic errors and timely miracles, that marked the Ottomans incursions from Europe s borders to the very heart of Christendom; and then, by the grace of God, their eventual repulsion and final defeat.

Reading Recommendation: Prologue, pp 3-22

Online Videos of Interest

The best overall Youtobe channel to cover the 'Moslems and Crusaders' unit is 'Real Crusades history' at The channel includes dozens of videos, including many short 5 minute informational vidoes on specific topics, such as

The videos listed above, and dozens more on the website cover the period most people associate with the crusades: that is, the series of religious wars between 1095 and 1295 that aimed at recovering the Holy lands from Islamic rule. But the 'Real Crusades History' youtube channel takes a much broader view of the crusades that corresponds perfectly with the 'Islam and Byzantine Empire' unit. That, is, it looks broadly at the series of wars encompasing over seven hundred years, that involved Islam invasions of Christian territories, and Christian reconquest. In addition the Holy Lands, there are many informational videos on many related topics of great interest to students of Islam/Christian conflicts. Among them are:

These are only a few of the dozens of short videos on Islam related topics. All are wonderfully narrated and illustrated with maps, portraits of heroes, and spectacular battle illustrations. They are entertaining as well as informative, and can be enjoyed by the whole family. Overoll one of the absolute best history sites on the internet.

Real Crusdes History is far and above the best islam site on the internet, but it is intended mainly for students with some background in medieval history. For younger students who have no appreciable background in Islamic history, the following video gives a brief but helpful introduction to the growth of Islam, and its conflicts with Christianity from the time of Mohammed to Iraq. It goes into little depth but provides a useful overview for novices.