Jewish Crusaders

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Walle Ras, May 17, 2019.

  1. Walle Ras Member

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    This is my first attempt at a timeline so any advice is appreciated.

    Prologue
    The appeal of the Byzantine Emperor lay opened upon the desk of Pope Urban II. In it the Emperor appealed for help liberating the holy land for Christendom. Taking the holy land would be easy, but keeping it not so much. The banner of Islam continued to spread throughout the world. Spain remained under Muslim control and the Pope was not sure that he could retain control of the holy sites in Judea. Judea, that was it. The Jewish problem had always plagued him. The slayers of Jesus walking around free. All the Jews in Christendom would be forced to go on the crusade and would act as a buffer between the good Christian states and the Seljuk Turks that ravaged pilgrims. The Pope quickly wrote up a decree and declared the first crusade for the holy land. Inserted in that decree is that all Jews will be forced to fight on this crusade. All property must either be sold or will be seized by the church. Within six months not a Jew was left in Europe.
     
  2. Bassarion Korax Well-Known Member

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    I think you're fundamentally misunderstanding the nature of the Jewish Question, here.
     
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  3. TheNerd_ Noobie History Entusiast

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    A bit ASB, but it's okay. Will this result in a less broken kingdom of Jerusalem?
     
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  4. SeaCambrian Well-Known Member

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    Why would Jews fight for the Crusaders after having their property taken? Why would the Crusaders provide weapons to people they just stole from?

    That said, the idea of Jews fighting in the Crusades is implausible, yet not impossible. Catholic and Muslim states in the Middle Ages both imposed poll taxes on Jews, in the latter case, seen as a fee for protection provided by the Muslim ruler to non-Muslims. Jizya specifically was also understood as a fee for the exemption from military service for non-Muslims. If the same connotation arose in Europe among Christian states, and the poll taxes on Jews were seen as a fee on non-Catholics as exemption from military service, then you might see a small number of Jewish soldiers. This could be seen in a similar vein as Cumans and Transylvanian Saxons in Hungary.
     
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  5. Jan Olbracht Well-Known Member

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    Many rulers in Europe benefited from presence of Jews and would not let them go (Jews were running mints of several European monarchs for example). In "New" Europe even Church's hierarchy often supported Jewish immigration, assuming, that for newly Christianised pagans presence of Jews would be proof, that Bible says truth ("you see, these guys from the Bible are real, so is the rest of the Book").
    So that scenario is not going to happen.
     
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  6. SeaCambrian Well-Known Member

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    That's interesting, any source for this?
     
  7. Jan Olbracht Well-Known Member

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    I've read about this on history forum few years ago, and I was surprised too.
     
  8. Mike Stearns Member

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    A thought that occurs to me is that you might be able to induce Medieval Jews to be supportive of the Crusades if you promise to let then rebuild the Temple after the Crusaders take Jerusalem.
     
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  9. Walle Ras Member

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    The current plan is that the deal is they get states and the abilitiy to hold titles in those states, but the true reason is that they are meat sheild's for the crusader states.
     
  10. Walle Ras Member

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    That's why Spain and England never kicked out all the Jews.
     
  11. Walle Ras Member

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    Broken later in history atleast.
     
  12. Walle Ras Member

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    Bold of you to assume weapons were provided.
     
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  13. Jan Olbracht Well-Known Member

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    Spain and England is not whole Europe, and expulsion of Jews from these countries happened later, in case of Spain-centuries later. At the time England was expelling Jews Central European monarchs were inviting them.
     
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  14. Walle Ras Member

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    I'm saying that there is some precedence for kicking all of us out. Enough that this isn't entirely ASB.
     
  15. alexmilman Well-Known Member

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    Logistics of this idea would make it impossible and, as formulated, it does not make too much of a practical sense, anyway: how women, children and elderly would be forced to fight? Who would be their military leaders? How would they cooperate with Christian crusaders and how existence of a huge train of the non-combatants (providing all Jews from a Catholic Europe managed to get to a single assembly area) would impact the crusading effort?

    Would it be permitted for them to live off the land on their march through Europe, or would the local authorities obliged to provide them with the necessities? How would they fight without weapons?

    And, of course, taking into an account that by the time of the 1st crusade a big chunk of Europe was not giving a damn about the Pope, the part about “not a single Jew” does not make any sense. For example, how would Urban II expel the Jews from Al Andalus, Byzantine empire, Bulgaria, Lithuania, Kiev?
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2019
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  16. Dolan Lookin fer Gooby

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    It is possible, but not when forced by the Pope. Abd definitely won't be called as a Crusade.

    Have Jews being much more acceptable as Mercenaries since Dark Age. They actually banned from owning weapons aside from knives in many places by the Catholic Church, so lifting this ban would be a good start.

    Have the Jews having some sort of very early Zionism due to all the other discrimination still going on.

    As the result, after Jerusalem falls to Islam. Have some influential Jewish Mercenary Captains, after scoring particularly huge number of wealth, decides to carve their own Kingdom by sailing/marching to The Holy Land and taking them by force.

    ITTL Kingdom of Jerusalem would be the fifth iteration of An Israelite Kingdom (First United Israel, Israel-Judah Split, Maccabeid Kingdom, Hashmonean Kingdom, and then whoever get the title of King).
     
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  17. Mort the Reaper Well-Known Member

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    Or maybe somehow prevent the ban from happening in the first place.
     
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  18. Dolan Lookin fer Gooby

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    The discrimination against Jews in Europe has many roots, both religious and political origin. But the most likely cause, that started the wide, systematic discrimination against Jews is the Jewish Revolt against Heraclius and subsequent Sassanian conquest of Roman Egypt and Syria (which weakened the Region enough to be soon conquered by Islam). After the rebellion and subsequent Islamic conquest, the Eastern Roman Empire started to ban Jews from owning any kind of weapons, except two knives per family (presumably for cooking and or slaughtering livestock purposes). The discrimination than spreading from there.
     
  19. Byzantion Well-Known Member

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    A Chazar conquest of Jerusalem could be interesting.
     
  20. Roger II Well-Known Member

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    ...Didn't the crusaders notoriously slaughter Jews in quite a few towns they went through?