500 AD The Byzantine Empire controlled most of the land bordering the Mediterranean Sea.
600s The Arab Muslims conquered Palestine. This included many sacred areas of the Christians.
1000s The Seljuk Turks invaded and conquered Asia Minor, Palestine, and Syria
1071 The Seljuk Turks conquered the Byzantines in the Battle of Manzikert. The Turks were also Muslims, however they did not allow Christians to visit their holy sites.
1095 Alexius Comnenus, the Byzantine Emperor, asked Pope Urban II for help in fighting the Turks. Urban wnated to defend the Christina holy sites against the Muslims, so he agreed to help.
Fall 1095 Urban held a meeting with the Church leaders in Clermont, France. He called for a crusade. He promised the crusaders spiritual and material rewards
April 1096 Peter the Hermit and knight called walter the Penniless lad a group to start out the expedition. They were known as the Peasants' Crusades. Because they stole most of their food, many of them were killed while still in Europe. The rest were killed when they reached Asia Minor.
26 June 1096 Peter the Hermit's crusaders forced their way across Sava, Hungary.
12 July 1096 Crusaders under Peter the Hermit reach Sofia in Hungary.
1 August 1096 The crusaders under Peter the Hermit reached Constantinople. Anna Comnena, a 13 year-old Christian in Constantinople, watched as the crusaders marched into the city.
1097 The well-trained knights sent by Urban defeated the Muslims near Nicaea.
30 June 1097 The Crusaders defeated the Turks at Dorylaeum.
20 October 1097 1st Crusaders arrived in Antioch.
3 June 1098 Christian Crusaders of the First Crusade seized Antioch, Turkey.
5 June 1099 Knights and their families on the First Crusade witnessed an eclipse of the moon and interpreted it as a sign from God that they would recapture Jerusalem.
12 June 1099 Crusade leaders visited the Mount of Olives where they met a hermit who urged them to assault Jerusalem.
8 July 1099 In Jerusalem 15,000 starving Christian soldiers marched around barefoot while the Muslim defenders mocked them from the battlements.
13 July 1099 The Crusaders launched their final assault on Muslims in Jerusalem.
15 July 1099 Jerusalem fell to the crusaders who slaughtered the Jewish and Muslim inhabitants.
1119 The Christians set up the Holy Land. Many knights remained there to defend the land.
1144 The Christian forces in Jerusalem had grown week. The Turks conquered the city of Edessa. Bernard Clairvaux, a French religious leader, inspired more crusaders to go and regain the land. This started the second crusade.
1147 The Second Crusade ended after the crusaders failed to conqueror Damascus.
1183 The Muslims continued to attack the Christians in Jerusalem. Saladin, the sultan of Egypt and Syria, united the Muslims in the area.
1187 Saladin defeated the Christian army in the Battle of the Horns of Hattin. He entered Jerusalem. The Christians only maintained a few coastal cities. Frederick I (Barbarossa), a German emperor, King Richard I (the Lion-Hearted) of England, and King Phillip (Augustus) of France brought armies to regain the Holy Land.
1190 Frederick drowned on the way.
16 March 1190 The Crusades began with the massacre of Jews in York, England. The Jewish population of York fled to Clifford's Tower overlooking the rivers Ouse and Foss during an anti-Jewish riot. A crazed friar set fire to the tower and rather than be captured, the inhabitants committed mass suicide,
1191 Richard and Philip captured the port cities of Acre and Jaffa but because they argued with each other, after the success Philpi returned home. He plotted against Richard. Richard tried to recapture Jerusalem, but he failed. In the end he made a treaty with Saladin, which allowed Christians to enter Jerusalem freely.
1202 The Fourth Crusade started.
12 April 1203 Crusaders seized Constantinople.
17 July 1212 Moslems were crushed in the Spanish crusade.
1212 The Children's Crusade took place. Thousands of boys and girls between 10 and 18 joined together. They believed that God would deliver Jerusalem to them. On their march, most of them died due to harsh weather conditions. Those that did return came home in shame.
25 August 1212 Children's crusaders under Nicolas (10) reached Genoa.
1217-1221 Christians captured the town of Damietta in Egypt. Their other efforts failed, so they gave up the city in a truce. This was known as the fifth crusade.
1228-1229 The sixth crusade was led by Frederick II the emperor of the Holy Roman Empire. He made a treaty with the Muslim sultan and regained control of Jerusalem.
17 October 1244 The Muslims attacked Jerusalem and seized it.
1248-1254 King Louis IX of France led the seventh Crusade. He attacked Egyptian cities. Louis was captured by the Muslims, but he was set free in return for the cities he had captured. He spent four years trying to strengthen the forces in the Holy land.
1268 Muslims took control of Antioch.
1270 Louis led the Eighth Crusade. His army landed in Tunis in northern Africa. Louis became ill soon after and died.
30 October 1270 The Treaty of Barbary ended the seventh crusade.
1291 Muslims took control of Acre. It was the last Christian center in Palestine.
25 September 1396 The last great Christian crusade, led jointly by John the Fearless of Nevers and King Sigismund of Hungary, ended in disaster at the hands of Sultan Bajazet I's Ottoman army at Nicopolis.
4 August 1578 A crusade against the Moors of Morocco was routed at the Battle of Alcazar-el-Kebir. King Sebastian of Portugal and 8,000 of his soldiers were killed. Sebastian was killed along with the King of Fez and the Moorish Pretender in the Battle of Alcazar.