• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

To what extent was the violence in Western society the MAIN reason for the deve1opment of the idea of Holy War?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

To what extent was the violence in Western society the MAIN reason for the deve1opment of the idea of Holy War? Violence in Western society was definitely a prominent factor in the culmination of the concept of Holy War. However, it is subjective to say that it was the most prominent. The growing influence and power of the Catholic Church was possibly the most pivotal factor in its development, as-over time-it was able to channel and unify the belligerents of Western Europe against a common, somewhat faceless, enemy. The role of the Church in the development of Holy War stretches far back before the ninth century, particularly in the writings of the celebrated scholar St. Augustine of Hippo (d. 430). Augustine's writings-which set out to articulate and understand when Christians were allowed to resort to acts of violence-came at a time when "Christian morality and doctrine were refined according to the needs and mental attitudes of the time," particularly considering the "vacuum created by the disappearance of Roman imperial authority." ...read more.

Middle

By toning violence with a much more moral and defensive inflection-a war in the service of the weak-and by adding the religious oaths of fealty to the feudal act of homage, churchmen did their utmost to Christianize feudal society in general and to set limits on feudal violence in particular. The ultimate goal of the Truce and Peace of God was the creation of peace leagues, led by secular lords who would join together to maintain the peace and "punish those who contravened their oaths by engaging in violent acts outside the set terms." Through the Peace of God movement the Church was starting to gain authority for deciding what constituted a "just war," and is a chief example from the Church of its growing attempts to set the parameters for violence to better suit Christian ideals and purposes. The imagery and language of the Church also changed in relation to the rise of Christian militarism. ...read more.

Conclusion

Evoking the imagery of martyrdom, the idea of suffering for one's religion to the point of death, Pope Alexander II granted to the Christian knights in Spain a remission of the penance required for their sins. This concept of absolution for soldiers portrays a pivotal shift in papal policy, namely by the introduction of clemency for soldiers fighting in a war deemed holy or just. In conclusion, violence in Western society was undoubtedly a contributory factor in the development of Holy War, but it was the cunning of the Catholic Church that created the final result. From successfully exploiting the contradictions found within the Old Testament, to glorifying warfare with the promise of the eternal reward, the Church tailored the concept of war in alignment with Christian tenets and ideals; an ideology that would come to form the bedrock of the Crusades. Kurt Shead MTG: C ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Other Historical Periods section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Other Historical Periods essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    To what extent was warfare between Britain and France the main contributory factor in ...

    3 star(s)

    Along with this many former Spanish territories were handed over to nations of the Grand Alliance such as Gibraltar and Minorca to the British, and Spanish Netherlands, Naples, Milan, and Sardinia to Austria. The impact this conflict had on the French was huge, French hegemony had been prevented; truly ending their dominance of Europe.

  2. HISTORY: MEDIEVAL WOMEN

    their possessions; a married woman was seen as the husbands property; the husband had power over all his wife's assets; a husband was at liberty to beat his wife; a wife was not allowed to divorce her husband; a woman could not inherit land if they had any surviving brothers;

  1. The First English Civil War

    North of the Tees, Newcastle, a great territorial magnate, was raising troops and supplies for the King, while Queen Henrietta Maria was busy in Holland, arranging for the importation of war material and money. In Yorkshire, opinion was divided, the royal cause being strongest in York and the North Riding,

  2. How far would agree that the strength of the British government was the main ...

    An informal understand ('The Lichfield House Compact') was reached in March 1835. In the following month, Peel was forced to resign and Melbourne once again became PM with Russell as Home Secretary. In these circumstances, O'Connell hoped for a change in the Whig attitude to Ireland.

  1. Louis XIV's fondness of war resulted his downfall

    others due to his inability to read situations but to also opt out of them. Louis' decided against dethroning his grandson from Madrid, and this is sufficient cause for him to carry on his fighting. This resulted in better terms at the end of the war.

  2. To what extent had the Russian economy been successfully modernised by 1914?

    but by increasing control over peasants whilst giving them an appearance of freedom and by crippling them with debt. The legal status of the peasant may have changed but they were still under control; their master merely changed. This was because the land was often given to commune, rather than

  1. To What Extent Was The South African War (1899 - 1902) A Capitalist War

    relatively tenuous hold on the global market to being the single largest producer of gold in the world by 1898 (accounting for 27% of global gold production) 3, even outstripping diamonds (which had been discovered in 1870 in Kimberly) as South Africa's most profitable export.

  2. To what extent could the Crusades be described as failure within the years 1095-1195?

    Simultaneously in XI century the number of pilgrimages to the Holy Land had increased. " Infidel Turk "was portrayed as a barbarian, whose presence in the Holy Land is intolerable to God and man. In addition, the Seljuks created immediate threat to the Christian Byzantine Empire.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work