Children's Crusade  

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The Children's Crusade is the name given to a disastrous Crusade by European Catholics to expel Muslims from the Holy Land said to have taken place in 1212. The traditional narrative is probably conflated from some factual and mythical notions of the period including visions by a French or German boy, an intention to peacefully convert Muslims in the Holy Land to Christianity, bands of children marching to Italy, and children being sold into slavery. A study published in 1977 casts doubt on the existence of these events, and many historians came to believe that they were not (or not primarily) children but multiple bands of "wandering poor" in Germany and France, some of whom tried to reach the Holy Land and others who never intended to do so. Early versions of events, of which there are many variations told over the centuries, are largely apocryphal.

In the arts

Many works-of-art reference the Children's Crusade; this list is focused on works that are set in Middle Ages and focus primarily on a re-telling of the events. For other uses see Children's Crusade (disambiguation).

  • La croisade des enfants ("The Children's Crusade", 1896) by Marcel Schwob.
  • La Croisade des Enfants (1902), a seldom-performed oratorio by Gabriel Pierné, featuring a children's chorus, is based on the events of the Children's Crusade.
  • Children's Crusade – a contemporary opera by R. Murray Schafer, first performed in 2009.
  • Cruciada copiilor ( en. Children's Crusade ) (1930), a play by Lucian Blaga based upon the Crusade.
  • The Children's Crusade (1958), children's historical novel by Henry Treece, includes a dramatic account of Stephen of Cloyes attempting to part the sea at Marseille.
  • The Gates of Paradise (1960), a novel by Jerzy Andrzejewski centres around the crusade, with the narrative employing a stream of consciousness technique.
  • Crusade in Jeans (Dutch Kruistocht in spijkerbroek), is a 1973 novel by Dutch author Thea Beckman and a 2006 film adaptation about the Children's Crusade through the eyes of a time traveller.
  • The Children's Crusade (1973), a play by Paul Thompson first produced at the Cockpit Theatre (Marylebone), London by the National Youth Theatre.
  • A Long March To Jerusalem (1978), a play by Don Taylor about the story of the Children's Crusade.
  • An Army of Children (1978), a novel by Evan Rhodes that tells the story of two boys, a Christian and a Jew, partaking in the Children's Crusade.
  • Children's Crusade - A song by Sting from his 1985 album The Dream of the Blue Turtles.
  • Lionheart (1987), a historical/fantasy film, loosely based on the stories of the Children's Crusade.
  • The Fire of Roses (2003), a novel by Gregory Rinaldi
  • Crusade of Tears (2004), a novel from the series Journey of Souls by C.D. Baker.
  • Crusade in Jeans aka A March Through Time (2006), a motion picture predicated on unintentional travel by a soccer-playing boy from the modern Netherlands to the legendary German Children's Crusade led by Nicholas.
  • The Crusade of Innocents (2006), novel by David George, suggests that the Children's Crusade may have been affected by the concurrent crusade against the Cathars in Southern France, and how the two could have met.
  • The Scarlet Cross (2006), a novel for youth by Karleen Bradford
  • 1212: Year of the Journey (2006), a novel by Kathleen McDonnell. Young adult historical novel.
  • Sylvia (2006) a novel by Bryce Courtney. Follows a teenage girl during the crusades.




Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Children's Crusade" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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