The St Brice’s Day Massacre takes place on the orders of King Ethelred the Unready during
which many Danes in England are killed.
Death of German Emperor Otto the Third. He is succeeded by Henry the Second.
War between Henry the Second of Germany and Boleslav Chobry of Poland.
Brian Boroimhe or ‘Boru’ becomes high king of Ireland securing his place as a symbol of
Irish independence and power.
Death of al-Mansur
Svein Forkbeard, king of Denmark attacks England in revenge for the murder of his sister,
Gunhild in the St Brice’s Day Massacre.
Henry the Second of Germany enters an alliance with the Wends.
Islamic forces sack Pisa.
Samandids are succeeded by the Qarakhanids (Ilig-Khans) in Central Asia.
Count Richard the Second lays claim to the title ‘Duke of Normandy’.
Sunni Mahmud of Ghazna invades Multan and incorporates it into his state by 1010.
Henry the Second of Germany founds the see of Bamberg.
The massacre of the Berber residents of Cordoba.
Caliph Al-Hakim orders the destruction of churches and synagogues in Jerusalem.
Martyrdom of St Bruno of Querfurt.
Berber forces lay Cordoba under siege.
Jews are persecuted and massacred in France for the first time.
Appearance of first Ta’ifa party ruler during break up of al-Andalus.
Danish siege of London.
Caliph al-Hakim destroys the Church of the Holy Sepulcher.
The fall and sack of Cordoba
English monarch. King Sweyn Fork-Beard of Denmark captures London and is
acknowledged as king of the English after battling Ethelred and eventually sending him into
exile in Normandy. Sweyn is king of England for only five weeks before his death.
Exiled Ethelred is recalled from Normandy to England after King Sweyn Forkbeard’s death.
King Brian Boru defeats a Danish-Norwegian force at Clontarf, near Dublin, ending the
Viking conquest of parts of Ireland.
Emperor Basil secures Byzantine rule over the Balkans
Germanic King Henry the second is crowned Emperor of the German Empire in Rome
Alfred’s successors were unsuccessful in appeasing the Vikings with annual tributes
“Danegeld”. The Danes soon resumed their raids into Britain and in 1016 Canute defeated the
Saxons led by Ethelred the Second, the Unready.
Death of King Ethelred. English monarch, King Edmund Ironside rules from April to
November before being defeated by Canute. King Canute then becomes king of Denmark
from 1018 and subjugates Norway and some of Sweden by 1028.
Turkish horsemen attack Armenia.
English monarch. Canute (Knut) of Denmark becomes King of England, Denmark (1019)
and Norway (1029) with London as his capital. Once, he ordered the tide to halt. The tide, of
course, did not.
Malcom King of Scots, takes control of Lothian from the earldom of Northumbria.
Sicily is invaded by the Normans.
Turkish raiders first reported in Armenia.
In Egypt, a group of Ismailis, a main branch of the Shi’ites, declare that the caliph al-Hakim
is an incarnation of Allah. (The Druze of Lebanon are their descendants) sparking off four
years of controversy and protest.
Under the Macedonian dynasty the Byzantine Empire reaches the height of prosperity; the
Bulgars proved a formidable danger, but after a long struggle were finally crushed by Basil the
Second, ‘the Bulgar-Slayer’.
A band of Norman mercenaries take service with the Byzantines in Southern Italy.
Mahmud of Ghazna breaks the power of Hindu states in northern India.
Gregorian Reform: Pope Gregory the Seventh (1020 to 1085) institutes a strict rule of
chastity for priests putting an abrupt end to the tradition of clerical marriage which dated back
to the beginnings of Christianity and reinforcing the biblical notion that human sexuality was
not just sinful but demonic.
Amid religious disputes the caliph al-Hakim vanishes one night in Cairo; he is presumed to
be murdered by some and to others to have been taken up into heaven.
Twelve clerics are burned to death for heresy at Orleans in France. This is the first known
instance of the practice.
The death of Henry the Second marks the extinction of the Liudolfing dynasty. Conrad the
Second is elected as king of Germany.
Boleslav Chobry becomes king of Poland.
A mass pilgrimage, sponsored by Duke Richard the Third of Normandy, arrives in
Canute arrives in Rome for German King Conrad the Second’s coronation as emperor.
The public frustration of Ademar’s attempt to prove that St Martial had been one of Christ’s
King Canute (Knut) conquers Norway.
The Battle of Stiklestad and the death of Olaf, King of Norway.
Olaf’s half -brother, Harald Hardrara, seeks sanctuary with Yaroslav, the King of the Rus.
Olaf’s body is exhumed and found to be incorrupt. He starts to be hailed as a saint.
The last Umayyad ruler is deposed, ending the caliphate in Spain. Disintegration of the
caliphate of Cordoba into Taifa principalities. Several Moorish kingdoms are established to
replace the caliphate.
Conrad the Second of Germany secures the kingdom of Burgundy after the death without
heir of King Rudolf the Third.
Peter Damian becomes a hermit.
Ademar - and a great crowd of other pilgrims - arrive in Jerusalem.
The kingdom of Burgundy in South Eastern France is joined with the German Empire.
Duncan becomes king of Scotland.
The Varangian Guards, Russian warriors hired as bodyguards to the Byzantine emperors,
are mentioned for the first time.
The arrival in Jerusalem of Duke Robert of Normandy is followed soon afterwards by his
death in Nicaea. He is succeeded as duke by his infant son, William.
Death of King Canute.
Harald Hardrara travels to Constantinople.
Foundation of monastery at Vallombrosa.
Sancho the Third who expanded his rule in northern Spain and created the kingdoms of
Castile and Aragon as well as holding Navarre, dies.
‘Constitutio de feudis.’
The Christian kingdoms of Leon and Navarre ally against Muslims in the south of Spain.
Ibn Sina (Avicenna) dies.
Seljuk Toghril Beg takes Nishapur; proclaims himself champion of Sunnis.
German King Henry the Third succeeds his father, Conrad the Second, as king of the
Macbeth overthrows and kills Duncan, king of Scots. Such usurpation was a normal feature
of Celtic succession struggles.
Suleiman Ibn Hud al-Judhami takes Saragossa; start of Hudid dynasty of central Spain.
Seljuk Turks invade Persia after defeating the Ghaznavids, the Turkish rulers of parts of
The French Jewish scholar Rabbi Shlomo Yitzhaqi (Rashi) is born.
Italian, Guido d’Arezzo devises musical notation using five-line staves.
King Hardicanute of Denmark.
The House of Wessex restored. The Saxon King Ethelred, his wife Emma, and their son
Edward fled into exile to Normandy across the channel where Ethelred dies.
Danish King Canute’s son and successor Hardicanute dies in 1042. Canute marries
Ethelred’s widow Emma making Edward his step-son and successor to the throne on England.
Edward secures Saxon support by his marriage to Edith, daughter of the powerful Saxon
noble Earl Godwin of Wessex and sister of Harold.
Edward the Confessor is crowned as King of England. King Edward’s piety gives rise to his
nickname “the confessor”. Edward was more interested in matters of religion the government
and moved his court from crowded London up river to the abbey church of St. Peter. The
abbey was called Westminster (Saxon: West Monastery) to distinguish it from the monastery
near St. Paul’s Cathedral in the east.
Westminster Abbey was consecrated on December 28, 1065 but King Edward was too ill to
attend but the following year he would take up eternal residence in his beloved abbey.
King Edward was without issue and favored his second cousin William of Normandy as
German King Henry the Third marries Agnes of Aquitaine.
Harald Hardrara flees Constantinople.
Harald Hardrara marries Elizabeth, Yaroslav’s daughter.
King Henry the Third disposes of three rival popes and replaces them with a German
appointee of his own.
Minority of King Henry the Fourth of Germany. Considerable loss of crown lands.
Ja’fariya Palace is built in Saragossa for the rulers of the Ta’ifa kingdom in Spain.
Harald Hardrara becomes undisputed King of Norway.
Arrival of Robert Hauteville - soon to be nicknamed ‘Guiscard’ - in southern Italy.
Duke William of Normandy wins his first battle.
Bruno of Toul is crowned in Rome as Pope Leo the Ninth, touring the Rhineland and
staging a council at Reims.
Hugh of Semur succeeds Odilo as Abbot of Cluny.
The Persian poet, Omar Khayyam is born.
Church of the Holy Sepulcher is rebuilt.
Pope Leo the Ninth condemns simony, trafficking in relics and sacred objects, at the
Councils of Rheims and Mainz.
“Ave Maria” appears in the breviaries of pious Catholics.
Ave Maria, gratia plena,
Benedicta tu in mulieribus,
et benedictus fructus ventris tui,
Sancta Maria, Mater Dei,
ora pro nobis peccatoribus,
et in hora
Hail Mary, Mother of God
“Death through Eve, life through Mary.” - Vatican 2
Hail Mary, full of grace:
the Lord is with thee;
Blessed art thou
amongst women, and
blessed is the fruit of thy womb,
Holy Mary, Mother of God,
pray for us sinners,
and at the hour
of our death.
Ghurids succeed the Ghaznavids and retake Mansura from the Hindu Rajput Sumeras.
King Edward the Confessor meets William Duke of Normandy and designates him as heir
to the throne of England laying the foundation for the Norman invasion of 1066.
Pope Leo the Ninth offers remission of sins to his troops fighting the Normans in Sicily and
on the mainland. Norman warrior Robert Guiscard defeats the papal army and Pope Leo is
taken prisoner by the Normans at the Battle of Civitate.
Robert Guiscard later supports the papacy and rules over the southern part of Italy.
The Iconoclastic Controversy ends with the explosion of a supernova, creating the Crab
A dispute between Roman Pope Leo the Ninth and Patriarch of Constantinople, Michael
Cerularius, leader of the Greek Orthodox Church. Cardinal Humbert’s embassy to
Constantinople results in a schism dividing the east and west branches of the Church of Christ.
The Church of Byzantium (Orthodox: correct way) from the Church of Rome (one Universal
Church of the faithful, without which there is absolutely no possibility of salvation). They
mutually excommunicate each other creating the Great Schism. The decrees were not formally
rescinded until 1965.
Death of Pope Leo the Ninth.
The Almoravid dynasty is established in North Africa by Berbers.
The Seljuk Turks, a militarily powerful united Islamic group invades south into the Middle
East from Afghanistan. Seljuk Turk Toghril Beg defeats the Shi’ites and entering Baghdad is
made sultan by the caliph. The mingling of Turkish, Arab and Persian cultures will dominate
Islamic countries for centuries.
Gruffydd ap Llewelyn, ruler of Gwynedd and Powys in northern Wales, completes his
conquest of southern Wales, becoming the most famed Welsh prince.
Beatrice and Matilda of Tuscany are exiled by German King Henry the Third to the
Death of King Henry the Third of Germany. Succeeded by his son, Henry the Fourth.
It was the papacy of Pope Gregory the Seventh which initiated the controversy when Henry
the Fourth became King of the Germans in 1056 at age six.
As long as kings elected popes the Church would be held sway to the wills of men instead
of being accountable only to God.
With the death of Basil the second, the Byzantine Emperor declines because of internal
factions. The Byzantine Macedonian dynasty ended with the death of Empress Theodora. The
Comnenus dynasty takes control of the empire.
The Gregorian Reform addresses the sin of simony.
Peter Damian becomes a cardinal. Street battles break out in Milan between supporters of
the archbishop and insurrectionists known as ‘the Patarenes’.
Beatrice and Matilda return to Tuscany.
MacDuff and Malcolm Canmore kill Macbeth, King of Scots.
Malcolm Canmore then kills Macbeth’s stepson to become king of Scotland.
A band of restless, landless Norman adventurers make their way south to Italy. The most
daring of these Viking freebooters was Robert Guiscard, the sixth of twelve sons of Tancred of
Hauteville. Guiscard means ‘fox like’ or ‘wily’.
Robert Guiscard makes an alliance with Pope Nicholas the Second who agreed to
recognize Robert as Duke of Apulia and Calabria and the future Duke of Sicily, if he could
seize and hold these lands for himself, for which he would pay the papacy an annual rent of
twelve pence per plow land.
The College of Cardinals was created in 1059 as a body of electors made up entirely of
Church officials. Leading to the Investiture Controversy and eventually the Investiture.
Election Decree; the cardinals lay claim to the right to appoint a pope.
Peter Damian arrives in Milan in an attempt to make peace between the archbishop and the
The Ghaznavids make peace with the Seljuk Turks and concentrate on culture and India.
Pope Nicholas the Second.
Norman knights of the Hauteville family under the leadership of the great Count Roger
undertake the conquest of Sicily from the Arabs.
Brother Roger Guiscard conquers Sicily 1061 to 1071 and Malta 1091driving out the Arab
A Norman Duchy is established on both sides of the straits of Messina.
Yusuf Ibn Tashufin establishes the Murabitun dynasty and Marrakesh, Morocco.
Henry the Fourth of Germany is kidnaped by the Archbishop of Cologne.
Alp Arslan makes significant gains for the Seljuk Turks, particularly in Armenia. The Seljuk
advances threaten the Byzantine Empire.
Death of Ibn Hazm.
Henry the Fourth comes of age. His mother, Agnes, leaves for Rome.
With the death of Ramiro of Aragon in Spain the fight against the Moors in Spain gains
Pope Alexander had returned in triumph to Rome with the financial assistance of the
Norman King William of Sicily. With the king’s death early in 1166 the succession of a minor
under regency made Alexander’s position in Rome precarious at best.
“He will give him seven feet of English ground, or as much more as he may be taller than
other men”. King Harold to King Harald Hardrada
Hailey’s comet was observed in early 1066, around the time of King Edward the
Confessor’s death. An omen of unfortunate events ... for the Saxons. It is recorded on the
Harold, son of Earl Godwin of Wessex, had sworn an oath to support William of
Normandy’s claim to the throne of England but claimed the dying king had changed his mind
and appointed himself as successor. Harold is crowned King of the English the day after
Edward the Confessor’s death but his reign would be brief, from January to October.
Anglo-Saxon King Harold’s victory over his traitorous brother Tosig and supporters under
Norwegian King Harald Hardrada at the Battle of Stamford Bridge was short lived. His army
weakened and wounded was no match for the fresh troops of William, Duke of Normandy who
crossed the channel and invaded the southern shores of the British Isles.
Marching with fifty thousand fresh troops the Normans clashed with the Saxons at Senlac
Hill, six miles north of Hastings in a pivotal battle. The confrontation bore Harold’s defeat on
October 14, 1066 when after vigorous and valiant fighting, an arrow pierced the eye of the
English king. Emboldened, Williams forces rushed forward to slaughter the Saxons.
Contender to the throne from October to December. Not crowned.
A new era of Norman overlords was ushered in. Henceforth the English language loses
The illegitimate son of the Duke of Normandy and a tanner’s daughter. Called ‘William the
Bastard” until 1066 when thereafter he was just called “The Conqueror.”
With all due respect, over the tomb of Edward the Confessor, William is crowned on
Christmas Day 1066 at Westminster Abbey. The Archbishop of York placed the crown on
William’s head, asking the assembled Saxon nobles if they would recognize the king as their
true liege lord. The shout of acclamation so alarmed the Norman guards who mistook the cry
as one of rejection and rushed headlong into the congregation with drawn swords. The melee
spread to the crowd outside and by the end of it all the streets of London were strewn with the
bodies of the dead and dying, illuminated by the glare of burning buildings
The Conqueror spends the remaining twenty one years of his rule crushing Saxon
resistance with an iron hand, confiscating Saxon lands and giving it to his Norman supporters
and introducing the feudal system to England.
To accurately tax his new subjects he had an exhaustive survey made of the resources
and wealth of his new kingdom. Completed in 1086, the comprehensive inventory was called
the Domesday Book.
After his death in 1087, it was said “a man could travel unmolested throughout the country
with his bosom full of gold.”
Work begins on the Tower of London. The keep of the Tower of London, or White Tower
was built by Bishop Gundulf on the site of Roman fortifications.
William leaves for Normandy assigning his half brother, Odo of Bayeux to administer affairs
The Norman Conquest continues as Odo subdues the north of England with the “Harrying
of the North” the region is laid waste.
The humble beginnings of Warwick Castle began as a motte and bailey earthwork. A hill
was formed from the earth scooped out of a ditch which also sufficed as a moat. On top of the
hill a log palisade was constructed surrounding a watch tower which also served as living
quarters for a small garrison. For national security a string of these ‘castles’ were built by order
of King William ‘the Conqueror’ to be less than a days march from each other.
The 231 foot long Bayeux Tapestry is really an embroidery stitched by the famed English
needle workers of Canterbury. It depicts the conquest over Earl Harold of Wessex by William
of Normandy in 1066.
It was commissioned by William the Conqueror’s half-brother, Odo of Bayeax, for display in
the Bayeux Cathedral in Normandy.
The lamenting closing line reads: ‘The sun set on the field - and on Anglo-Saxon England.’
William the Conqueror constructs a motte and bailey castle at the site of Windsor.
A public penance is imposed on all who lost the fight at Hastings.
Hereward the Wake begins a Saxon revolt in the Fens of eastern England.
Lanfranc, an Italian lawyer, Becomes Williams formidable Archbishop of Canterbury.
Lanfranc rebuilds Canterbury Cathedral and establishes the primacy of the see of Canterbury
over York, but does not enforce clerical celibacy.
Spanish Christians drive Muslims from Spain in the Recoinquista.
Order of the Hospital of Saint John the Baptist of Jerusalem.
In 1023, merchants from Amalfi and Salerno in Italy were given permission by the Caliph Ali
az-Zahir of Egypt to rebuild the hospital in Jerusalem. The Hospital was built on the site of the
monastery of Saint John the Baptist close to the Holy Sepulcher and the infirmary was served
by Benedictine monks who ministered to sick or injured pilgrims regardless of race or creed.
Order of knights who were themselves inflicted with leprosy.
Seljuk Turks capture Jerusalem. The Turks are not as tolerant to Christians as their
previous Muslim rulers had been.
Seljuk Turks crush Rum (Romans) in Anatolia (Turkey). Turks threatened by the Byzantine
Emperor Romanus the Fourth get help from Sultan Alp Arslan.
Seljuk Turks defeat Byzantine Emperor Romanus forces at Manzikert (Malazgirt) in
Armenia. They overrun Asia Minor and soon control the entire Muslim East except for Egypt.
They establish a capital at Nicaea in Anatolia.
The fall of Nicaea (Iznik) and Iconium (Konya) to the Turks precipitates a plea from the
Eastern Orthodox Church in Byzantium to call for succor from the Roman Catholic Church. The
Rum would never rise again.
First Saxon revolt against German King Henry the Fourth.
Norman adventurer Robert Guiscard ousts the Byzantines from Calabria.
After ten years, Normans under Robert Guiscard finally defeats Byzantine forces in Bari,
and oust them from their last outpost on the Italian mainland.
Robert along with his brother Roger focused their attention on Arab held Sicily. The
brothers swiftly crossed the straits of Messina and laid siege to Palermo.
William the Conqueror, king of the English, invades Scotland receiving the submission of
Hereward the Wake. Malcolm the third, King of Scots, is forced to pay homage to King William.
Rival bishops are appointed in Milan.
Alfonso the Sixth becomes King of Leon.
Archdeacon Hildebrand is elected Pope taking the name Gregory.
Pope Gregory the Seventh calls for milites Christi ‘soldiers of Christ’ and plans for a military
campaign against Constantinople to enforce the authority of Rome over the Eastern Orthodox
Church, a campaign that he himself would lead, has been described as ‘the precursor of the
fully-fledged crusading movement’ some twenty years later. But his pontificate was dominated
by other issues, notably the great contest with German Emperor Henry the Fourth over the
rival claims of Empire and papacy to supreme authority in Western Christendom.
The conflict between German Emperor Henry the Fourth and the Papacy was the reason
Henry did not participate in the expedition against the Seljuk Turks conquering Anatolia.
Seljuk Turks take Syria and Palestine from the Byzantine Empire.
Pope Gregory the seventh from the Roman Church proposes a campaign to assist
Byzantium reclaim Jerusalem and liberate the Holy Sepulcher from Muslim hands, but with the
Germans and the English denying the Pope’s supremacy there was no hope of launching a
military campaign to the Holy Land and in fact the Roman Church’s future was held in the
The Investiture Controversy, a rivalry between reforming popes and rulers over the rights to
appoint bishops. Gregory charges the Germans not to obey disobedient bishops.
German King Henry the Fourth imposes his own candidate on the archbishopric of Milan.
King Henry suppresses the revolt in Saxony defeating the rebels at the battle of Unstrut.
Seljuk Turks take Jerusalem.
Norman adventurer Robert Guiscard captures Salerno.
King Henry the Fourth and the German bishops withdraw their recognition from Pope
Gregory the Seventh. At a conference in Worms, two-thirds of the German bishops renounce
their loyalty to Gregory. Gregory excommunicates Henry and urges his subjects to rebel.
Under threat of deposition Henry makes peace with Pope Gregory but the rebellious
princes elect Rudolf of Rheinfelden, at Tribur, as king in his place; civil war ensues.
Rebellion breaks out again in Saxony.
Early in his papacy, Gregory infuriated the King Henry the Fourth by changing the rules by
which the pope could invest Bishops without the Emperor’s approval. Henry renounced
Gregory as pope. Pope Gregory retaliated by excommunicating Henry and withdrawing his
support for Henry’s right to the German throne.
At twenty years old the Roman Emperor Henry of Germany defies the Pope. Pope Gregory
invokes the Papal Interdict of Excommunication against both the Roman Emperor Henry and
Byzantine Emperor Alexius in Constantinople.
On January 25 at Canossa, wearing no shoes and clothed in penitent garb and hair shirt
the penitent German King Henry seeks an audience with Pope Gregory. The pope refused to
see him and for three days left the emperor standing barefoot freezing in the snow. Kneeling
before the pope, begging forgiveness, Henry is welcomed back into the church temporarily
resolving the Investiture Controversy.
King Henry attacks the Pope. The Pope flees Rome.
An assembly of princes at Forcheim elects Duke Rodulf of Swabia as king.
Civil war in the Reich.
Death of Agnes.
The triumvirate office of Roman Emperors came to an end when the Vandals sacked Rome
in 455 AD leaving the Eastern Roman empire to operate as the Byzantine Empire under Greek
Orthodox (the straight path of righteous opinion) which no longer held tribute to Rome or to
Christ’s vicar, the primacy of the Roman Church, keeper of the keys to the Kingdom of
Heaven, wearer of the shoes of the fisherman, the one, the only, Papa. Clunic monk
Hildebrand ascends the Throne of St. Peter as Pope Gregory the Seventh and restricts the title
of “Papa” forbidding the moniker to be used elsewhere.
His decree to residential priests to forego their wives and be celibate proved unpopular.
Seljuk Turks conquer Jerusalem. This, along with the Christian defeat at Manzikert in 1071,
causes anxiety in the Byzantine Emperor Michael the Seventh. The region is now unstable for
pilgrims who previously could pass freely and safely to the holy sites in Jerusalem. Citing
atrocities and desecrations, the Orthodox church requests an armed force from Pope Gregory
in Rome. These acts precipitate the ‘First Crusade’.
Almoravids sack Ghana’s capital; Kumbi city, and impose Islam.
The keep of the Tower of London was built by Bishop Gundulf on the site of Roman
fortifications. Building the ninety foot Tower by the Thames where Roman Emperor Claudius
had built fortifications a thousand years before. The original wooden structure was soon
replaced with one built of cream-coloured stone imported from the continent. The White Tower.
Pope Gregory the Seventh formally bans the investiture of bishops by emperors and kings.
King Henry the Fourth again withdraws his obedience from Pope Gregory who
excommunicates Henry for a second time. Henry nominates an anti-pope.
In a letter, William the Conqueror reminds Pope Gregory the Seventh that the King of
England owes him no allegiance.
Rudolf of Swabia dies in battle.
Alfonso the Sixth imposes the Roman form of Mass on his kingdom.
Alexius Comnenus becomes Byzantine Emperor in Constantinople.
King Henry the Fourth marches abortively on Rome.
Robert Guiscard crosses the Adriatic.
Imperial confirmation of the Customs of Pisa.
Exiled by the king of Castile, his general ‘El Cid’ fights against the Christians.
Rodrigo Diaz de Bivar, ‘El Cid’ ( Moorish; Sidi, “Lord”), a mercenary fighting for the Moors in
Iberia, deserts their service to conquer Valencia for himself.
Venetians acquire trading privileges from Alexius Comnenus in Constantinople.
Robert Guiscard withdraws again to Apulia.
King Henry the Fourth captures St Peter’s in Rome.
Emperor Henry the Fourth captures Rome from the papacy, forcing Pope Gregory the
Seventh into exile. Henry appoints Clement the Third (1084 to 1100), the first of several
antipopes set up by the Holy Roman Emperor in opposition to papal power. Pope Clement
anoints Henry as Holy Roman Emperor.
Emperor Henry retreats before the advance of Robert Guiscard, who rescues Gregory from
the Castel Sant’ Angelo and sacks Rome.
Pope Gregory the Seventh dies from ‘a broken heart’ upon hearing the news of Christian
defeats and the fall of the Holy City of Jerusalem into Muslim hands. He died in Salerno having
been driven from Rome by Emperor Henry the Fourth of Germany.
Christian King Alfonso the Sixth captures Toledo, the largest Andalusian state and the
Islamic centre of science in Spain.
Death of Robert Guiscard.
William the Conqueror’s compilation of the Domesday Book is completed. A survey of the
owner ship of land and livestock in England. Collated in two volumes known as the Great and
Little Domesday Books.
Famine in England.
Pope Victor the Third is elected in 1086 but dies the following year. Succeeded by Odo de
Lagery as Pope Urban the Second in 1088
Seljuk Turk, Sultan Suleyman, father of Kilij Arslan, killed in battle among chiefs of Anatolia
The capture of Toledo leads to the invasion of North African Almoravid and Berber
Murabitin. Muslim warriors aid in defeating King Alfonso at Zallaqah and taking over much of
William the Conqueror, King of England, dies at Rouen, Normandy. His eldest son William,
nicknamed ‘Rufus’ for his red hair and flushed face receives the kingdom of England as his
inheritance. His eldest son Robert is made Duke of Normandy and becomes one of the leaders
of the First Crusade. His fourth son, Henry, receives 5,000 pounds.
William Rufus made Westminster the administrative centre of the kingdom and builds
Pisan raid on al-Mahdiyya, Tunisia.
Cardinals loyal to the Roman Church elect Odo de Lagery, the cardinal-bishop of Ostia as
Pope Urban the Second who takes up residence in the Lateran palace.
Germanic Emperor Henry the Fourth appoints Archbishop Guibert of Ravenna anti-pope
Clement the Third in Rome.
The sedia gestatoria, a portable throne.
A university is founded in Bologna
Work begins on the third and largest church at Cluny.
Almoravid takeover of al-Andalus. (Spain).
Pope Urban the Second lifts the excommunication from Emperor Henry the Fourth and is
acknowledged as Pope. At the Roman Church’s lowest ebb, a time when its sovereignly was in
question, the papacy won this conflict and was now poised to become The Roman Catholic
Church. (Gk < kata - thoroughly + holos - whole).
Saharan Murabitun conquer most of Islamic al-Andulus to1102. Bringing together the
Muslim kingdoms in Andalusia and establishing the Almoravid (Al-Murabitun) Dynasty.
Visit of Count of Flanders to Constantinople prompts Emperor Alexius the First to consider
recruiting Western knights against the Turks.
The last Muslim outpost in Sicily submits to Norman rule.
Yusuf ibn-Tashfin takes control of Granada in southern Spain exiling ‘Abd Allah to Morocco.
Alexius the First reforms Byzantine coinage.
The Archbishop of Canterbury Anselm, an Italian theologian and philosopher, promotes his
ontological proof of the existence of God. ‘Anything that exists in reality is by nature greater
than anything existing only in the mind, God must exist in reality, otherwise He would not be
‘the greatest conceivable being’.
Death of King Malcolm of Scotland in battle against the English. His Wife Margaret would
be canonizes by Pope Innocent the fourth in 1251 making her the only Scottish royal saint.
Saint Margaret is honoured in Edinburgh Castle.
Following the death of his brother Donald Bane seizes the throne of Scotland. King of Scots
Portugal becomes an independent kingdom.
The Council of Piacenza. Pope Urban the Second tours France. He consecrates the ‘major
ecclesia’ of Cluny.
Divine restitution received in an appeal for military aid and assistance from the Byzantine
Emperor himself, Alexius Commenus , 1081 to 1118, to Pope Urban Secondi. With Latin
passion Pope Urban mounts a coalition of military might the likes of which the world has never
To Pope Urban, the plight of the Eastern Orthodox Church in the Byzantine Empire was a
sign from God. Urban promised instant absolution and the total remission of sins for all who
took the cross.
In November, Pope Urban the Second’s presence in Clermont had drawn such a multitude
the cathedral couldn’t contain them and a superstructure had to be built to house the masses.
From his zealous speech arose assent from the crowd as his words went from his lips to God’s
ears “God wills it!”
Amidst thunderous applause and battle cries the crowd could not be restrained any longer
from rushing the platform in order to receive one of the thousands of little red linen crosses the
pontiff had brought with him. It took no time for the stock to be depleted and the more inventive
took to marking themselves with any red liquid they could find. Self mutilation found an endless
supply of blood for smearing intersecting lines on face or body, cloth or shield. The bloodletting
would start here and end in Jerusalem.
The Red Cross would become a potent symbol of Christianity.
Ten thousand Knights, a hundred thousand foot soldiers, and tens of thousands more
pilgrims would take the cross.
Little was asked... much was forthcoming... Too much.
The Seljuk Empire begins to crumble after the death of prince Tutush as independent
principalities divide the empire.
Rhineland massacre of Jews.
An overzealous invasion army led by Peter the Hermit and a hoard of twenty thousand
peasants forming the tip of the lance of the Peasants Crusade, leaves ahead of the main shaft
of the Frankish army.
In Turkey, Kilij Arslan, Sultan of Nicaea, crushes the Frankish peasant army led by Peter the
Hermit. Peter, however was safe in Byzantium at the time.
An army of French and Norman warriors, fifty to eighty thousand strong, arrives at
Arrival of main armies at Constantinople under papal legate Bishop Adhemar of Le Puy.
Godfrey of Bouillon, Duke of Lower Lorraine
Count Raymond of Toulouse
Robert of Normandy, son of William the Conqueror
Baldwin of Boulogne
Stephen of Blois
Hugh of Vermandois
Bohemond of Oranto
They swear allegiance to Emperor Alexius.
April, the capture of Nicaea by the Franks. The first major victory for the Christian army.
July, Kilij Arslan is defeated at Dorylaeum in Anatolia.
The emirate of Smyrna ceases to exist as Arslan’s wife and brother, the emir of Smyrna,
are exiled by the Byzantine Basileus.
On October 21, the Frankish army becomes visible from the walls of Antioch “They are
here!” was the cry from the peak of the citadel. The rumors were true and fear gripped the
hearts of her citizens.
Edgar, second son of Malcolm Canmore, defeats Donald Bane with the assistance of King
William Rufus of England.
Robert of Molesme founds Citeaux. A small band of monks seeing the easy living of their
fellow monks at their Abbey of Molesme in Burgundy form a new order with stricter adherence
to the rules laid out by St Benedict.
February, Baldwin takes Edessa and makes himself Prince in an unusual ritual ceremony
involving the birth of legitimacy. Then seals his pact.
Hildegard is born in the Rhineland town of Bermersheim, near Mainz. The mother of all
Mother Superiors, the Abbess of the first Nunnery.
The Franks take Antioch and triumph over a Muslim rescue army commanded by Karbuqa,
ruler of Mosul.
May, during the siege of Antioch Turkish spies came out of the city under stealth to ply their
trade. Bohemond put a stop to this flagrant treachery by capturing a few spies and had his
cooks skewer them with lances and roast them on a spit over hot coals.
June 2, The Legend of the Holy Lance: The lance which pierced Jesus side after Jesus
was dead, as a testament to his death, would figure most prominently a thousand years later
causing a muster in an almost defeated army to rise up and commit horrendous atrocities in
the city of Antioch.
Capture of Antioch after an eight-month siege. An Armenian Muslim, Firuz, a disgruntled
maker of armor in charge of the defense of a tower, agrees to admit the Frank enemy into his
post along the outer wall of Antioch in return for gold and land. To seal the deal he hands his
son over as a hostage. Bohemond takes control of the city.
Christian victory over a Muslim rescue army commanded by Karbuqa, ruler of Mosul.
Magnus of Norway seizes the Orkneys, Shetlands, and Isle of Man.
August, the Fatamids of Cairo take Jerusalem from the Seljuk Turks.
“The inhabitants of the earth are of two sorts: Those with brains, but no religion, and those
with religion, but no brains.” - Abu’l-‘Ala’ al-Ma’arri
December 11, desperate to save their community the notables of Ma’arra approach
Bohemond who promised to spare the population if they disarmed and withdrew from secure
buildings. The inhabitants complied and at dawn, December 12, the Franj army entered
Ma’arra in force immediately setting about their butchery, Thousands were hunted down and
slaughtered but the horror would not stop there.
Before their captives unbelieving eyes;
“The Franks boiled pagan adults in cooking pots: they impaled children on spits and
devoured them grilled.” - Radulph of Caen
“”Not only did our troops not shrink from eating dead Turks and Saracens; they also ate
dogs!” - Albert of Aix.
“The hands of priests are more privileged than those of any angel, for in the sacrament of
the altar they resurrect their Lord; could it be right that hands so honored should be made
subject to hands contaminated by plunder and the shedding of blood?” - Pope Urban the
In April, the Easter Council of 1099 at St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, Pope Urban pronounces
anathemas against lay investiture and a ban on homage, that priests were above receiving
power or privilege from temporal kings and princes. Indeed it was the vicar of Christ who
invested kings with kingdoms and monarchs with crowns.
On September 29, Pope Urban dies before the conquest of Jerusalem. Pope Pashcal the
Second authorizes the preaching of a crusade against the Byzantine Empire in support of
Bohemond of Antioch’s campaign against Emperor Alexius.
‘And when he was come near, he saw the city, and wept over it... For all the days shall
come upon you when your enemies will cast a trench about you, and compass you round, and
keep you in on every side.’ - Luke
The world is about 5,000 years old and would end before the year 6,000. Approximately
500 years after the death of Shiloh, the first and last non-Jewish Prophet in the line of Ibrahim
The Anti-Christ will legalize sin. Just as the Anti-Christ is about to destroy the last group of
True Believers, the axe wielding resurrected Jesus (Isa, pbuh) will descend to earth in armor
and kill the Anti-Christ and his disciples in battle at the town of Armageddon in Palestine. This
is all that is necessary to endorse the behavior of Jesus’ true adherents, the advocatus sancti
sepulchri, the defenders of the Holy Sepulcher, to annhilate pagans, heathens, infidels and
Judgement Day had arrived in the form of an oppressive fighting force from the west. Gog
July 15, once the walls were breached and the massive gates opened to permit entry to the
invading army, all Hell broke loose. The battlefield quickly became an abattoir. There was
wailing and the gnashing of teeth as the streets of Jerusalem ran red with a river of blood. It
was an onslaught of the populace succumbing to the bloodthirsty barbarians chosen to be His
instrument of redemption. Mercilessly the killing frenzy continued. The ethnic cleansing of the
Temple was so complete the invaders had to wade through blood ‘up to their knees’. No one
In just two days the Franks (Franj) annihilated the entire population of Jerusalem. Man,
woman and child: Moslem, Christian, Jew. None overlooked and none spared. Thirty thousand
souls were judged by the almighty.
Raymond of Toulouse held on to his sanity and humanity that day offering asylum and
protection to officials who had surrendered and thrown themselves at his feet in submission.
True to his word, Raymond gave safe passage to a small measure of the garrison outside the
city walls. His chivalry would not be forgotten.
Fall of Jerusalem, and the debacle of the Egyptian rescue army. The grand qadi of
Damascus, Abu Sa’ad al-Harawi, leads a delegation of refugees to Baghdad to denounce the
lack of action by Muslim leaders in the face of invasion. Wearing no turbans, their heads
shaved as a sign of mourning, declaiming eloquently but loudly in the spacious diwan of the
caliph of Baghdad, al-Mustazhir Billah and his court dignitaries, “How dare you slumber in the
shade of complacent safety....”
Out of this fire was forged a standing army for the Pope in Rome to rule the Kingdom of
Jerusalem, called the Poor Fellow Soldiers of Christ. They were granted lodging on the
Temple Mount, the site of the Holy of Holies of Solomon’s Temple to become ‘Knights
Carved out of the coastline from antiquities Antioch, Tripoli, Beirut, Acre, Joppa and
Ascalon. The kingdom was tenuous at best. Held together by pacts and treaties which were
Godfrey de Bouillon elected by the college of nobles as Lord of Jerusalem but refused to
wear a crown of gold where his lord Jesus Christ wore a crown of thorns.
Count of Edessa, Baldwin, the brother of Godfrey, has no qualms about donning the gold
crown to become the first Frankish King of Jerusalem and barely escapes an ambush near
Beirut on his way to proclaim himself King of the new Crusader states.
Of the 100,000 who started out on this campaign only half lived to see Jerusalem and of
them only 20,000 would remain. The rest returned home. And so a kingdom was born.
Richard the LionHeart’s great grandfather.
English monarch. William Rufus’ twelve year rule ended with a suspicious accident while
on a hunting expedition in the New Forest with his younger brother Henry. Walter Tirel shot an
arrow which hit King William squarely in the chest. Henry left his dead brother in the New
Forest galloping off to seize the Royal Treasury at Winchester while Tirel fled to France, no
punitive action was taken and his son was nevertheless allowed to keep his father’s English
estates provoking speculation that this was no accident.
Henry’s brother, and rightful heir, Robert ‘Curthose’ Duke of Normandy was celebrating
victory from the capture of Jerusalem when he heard of his brother William Rufus’ death and
how his brother Henry had snatched the royal crown of England from his head.
Henry ‘Beauclerc’ (good scholar) because he could read and write was crowned in 1100. King
Henry was the first generation of Norman lords to be born on English soil. Three months after
his coronation the first Royal wedding at Westminster Abbey took place between of Henry,
Duke of Normandy and Princess Edith, daughter of Scots king Edgar. Thus a Norman-English Scottishalliance.
His second marriage to Anglo Saxon princess, Matilda, caused consternation among the
ruling classes. Their eleven year old daughter Matilda was betrothed to the Holy Roman
Emperor Henry the Fifth and left for Germany to reside in his court. Two princes would be born
to claim inheritance but they would perish in the White Ship disaster leaving daughter Matilda
as heir apparent.
Henry appoints his nephew Stephen to rule Normandy but names his daughter Matilda as
heir to the throne of England knowing full well there is was no precedence for a woman ruling
over men. In fact it was not until recently, with the benevolence of Our Queen, that this archaic
law was rescinded.
Henry Beauclerc dies after 35 years on the throne from food poisoning after gorging himself
on a feast of lamprey eels. He lies in repose at Reading Abbey, London.
Baldwin, brother of Godfrey, Lord of Jerusalem takes the title of King of Jerusalem.
Chansons de Roland and Digenes Akrites committed to writing.