'A nuanced and sophisticated analysis... Exhilarating' Sunday Telegraph
Nine hundred years ago, one of the most controversial episodes in Christian history was initiated. The Pope stated that, in spite of the apparently pacifist message of the New Testament, God actually wanted European knights to wage a fierce and bloody war against Islam and recapture Jerusalem. Thus was the First Crusade born.
Focusing on the characters that drove this extraordinary campaign, this fascinating period of history is recreated through awe-inspiring and often barbaric tales of bold adventure while at the same time providing significant insights into early medieval society, morality and mentality. The First Crusade marked a watershed in relations between Islam and the West, a conflict that set these two world religions on a course towards deep-seated animosity and enduring enmity. The chilling reverberations of this earth-shattering clash still echo in the world today.
'[Asbridge] balances persuasive analysis with a flair for conveying with dramatic power the crusaders' plight' Financial Times