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Was there such a thing as “crusading violence”? Traditionally the crusading movement has been sharply distinguished from other forms of Christian violence motivated, or at least justified, by religion. However, we have increasingly come to recognize the difficulties of drawing clear-cut boundaries between crusading and other aspects of western European culture in the Middle Ages. This chapter assesses the ways in which crusader violence was like and unlike other forms of medieval Christian violence.


This is the accepted manuscript version of a chapter to be published in volume 2 of The Cambridge World History of Violence, edited by Richard W. Kaeuper, Deborah Tor and Harriet Zurndorfer.

This version is free to view and download for personal use only. Not for re-distribution, re-sale or use in derivative works. Copyright 2018, Cambridge University Press.