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A 12th-century French map of Jerusalem showing the main religious sites and crusaders chasing out the infidel.

Outremer, the crusader kingdom, and its capital Jerusalem entered a golden age during the 1130s. Simon Sebag Montefiore portrays its extraordinary cast of kings, queens, conquerors and criminals.

William of Tyre discovers Baldwin's first symptoms of leprosy (MS of L'Estoire d'Eracles (French translation of William of Tyre's Historia), painted in France, 1250s.

Peter Edbury profiles medieval Christendom's militant apologist.

The Battle of Hattin, from a 15th-century manuscript.

Frankish disunity and impetuosity produced a disaster that lost Christendom the holy city of Jerusalem.

Marius Ostrowski explains why the Church was so dominant in the Middle ages, but also sees traces of a growing secularism.

 Cathars being expelled from Carcassonne in 1209.

Richard Cavendish marks the anniversary of a great fortress being sacked, on August 15th, 1209.

Jonathan Phillips sees one of the most notorious events in European history as a typical ‘clash of cultures’.

Christopher Tyerman explains why he believes the crusades were important in shaping the ideology and fiscal and political structures of the secular state.

Louis IX on a ship departing from Aigues-Mortes, for the Seventh Crusade.

Simon Lloyd assess the achievements and legacy of France's idealised royal crusader.

Philippe and Richard II

Nigel Saul discusses attempts to revive the crusading zeal in late medieval Europe and explains why they failed to rekindle the fervour of the earlier movement.

What did medieval contemporaries think of military orders such as the Knights Hospitaller and Teutonic Knights? Helen Nicholson investigates.