Question by Richard H: What about the marriage vow portion "til death do us part" don't people understand?
It seems that the state of marriage today is a sham. People give excuses like: "we just fell out of love with each other". Marriage isn't something that is entirely emotional. Also, I have known a couple of people whose spouses cheated on them. Did they get divorced? No, they didn't. They worked it out and their marriage is stronger than ever. Marriage is work.
Answer by oracular
I dont understand why people get married these days anyways. It doesnt mean what it used to. And this is coming from a fifteen year old.
Know better? Leave your own answer in the comments!
the rest is history
Image by andrevanb
A sign on a wall in Vézelay, reading:
"L(...) DG Lovis VII
dit Le Jeune
2cn Croisam DG de 1146
I was curious what this sign referred to, so I searched the internet a bit and soon got lost in those fascinating stories of the middle ages we learned about in history class at school - you know, the crusades, the knight templars, popes and kings, courts and monasteries..
If you're having a same kind of grey sunday afternoon as we're having over here I thought you might be interested in some background information on what happened in Vézelay, back in 1146.
It's taken from Wikipedia entries, for the most part - I tried to be concise
In 1145 Pope Eugene III received the news that the Seljuk Turks had recaptured the state of Edessa - one of the four Christian Crusader states in the Middle East that were founded at the end of the first crusade after the siege of Jerusalem in 1099. ( here's a map )
The news urged Eugene to call out for a second crusade, in the papal bull Quantum preadecessores of 1 december 1145. A few weeks later, on Christmas day 1145, King Louis VII "the Younger" of France expressed his own wish to go for an expedition to the Holy Land.
It's uncertain if Louis by that time had already heard the news of the papal bull, and perhaps he originally didn't plan for a crusade but for a pilgrimage. Some sources say he wanted to fulfill a vow to go Jerusalem that his brother had not been able to accompish before his death, Others suggest Louis was guiltridden and wanted to atone for his sins, because of atrocities committed in a war against Champagne, a few years earlier. Louis had been personally involved in the assault and burning of the town of Vitry, where more than a thousand people who had sought refuge in the church died in the flames.
In any case, the reactions to both the Pope's call for the new crusade and King Louis' plans were lukewarm. Louis' nobles objected as he would potentially be gone from the kingdom for several years. Searching to ignite their enthusiasm Louis appealed to abbot Bernard of Clervaux. Some twenty years before, famous "Doctor of the Church" Bernard had drawn up the code of the Knights Templar, which since then had rapidly become the ideal of Christian nobilty all over mediaeval Europe. Louis asked Bernard to publicy, via an oracle pronounce on Gods will with respect to the new crusade.
Bernard referred Louis back to Pope Eugene, who of course enthusiastically supported the kings plans. Eugene reissued his Quantum Praedecessores bull on 1 march 1146, and authorized Bernard to preach the news through out France.
A parliament was convoked at Vézelay in Burgundy in 1146, and Bernard preached before the assembly on Easter Sunday, March 31st . He stressed the importance of the "taking of the cross" as a potent means of gaining absolution for sin and attaining grace. Louis VII of France, his wife Eleanor of Aquitaine , and the princes and lords present prostrated themselves at the feet of Bernard to receive the pilgrims' cross. An even greater response than that of the royalty and nobility came from the common people. The crowd enlisted en masse; they supposedly ran out of cloth to make crosses. Bernard is said to have given his own outer garments to be cut up to make more.
Bernard then passed into Germany, and the reported miracles which multiplied almost at his every step undoubtedly contributed to the success of his mission. At Speyer, Konrad III of Germany and his nephew Frederick Barbarossa , received the cross from the hand of Bernard. Pope Eugene came in person to France to encourage the enterprise.
The rest, as they say, is history.. The crusade was a total disaster. The Flemish and German troops couldn't get along with the French, there were miscommunications and big ego's, greed and mistrust, there were the lists and tricks of christian Emperor Manel of Constantinople , who had unexpectedly allied with the Seljuks, and above all the troops of Seljuk general Nur al-Din turned out to be far too strong and clever for the crusaders army. They crushed the Germans in Nicea - only one out of ten survived -, made the poor remainders of the crusader's armies cancel an already hopelessly divided attempt to siege Damascus, and forced to withdraw to the Kingdom of Jerusalem.
An embittered Konrad III left the country in september 1148, followed on easter 1149 by Louis VII , probably even more embittered : his wife Eleanor of Aquitaine, who had followed him on the crusade, had expressed her wish for a divorce. (The royal marriage was actually annulled a few years later, Eleonare would marry the duke of Normandy, become Queen of England and give birth to Richard Lionheart - the later hero of the third crusade)
Back in Europe, Bernard of Clairvaux was humiliated by the defeat. Bernard sent an apology to the Pope, which is inserted in the second part of his Book of Consideration. There he explains how the sins of the crusaders were the cause of their misfortune and failures. When his attempt to call a new crusade failed, he tried to disassociate himself from the fiasco of the Second Crusade altogether. He would die in 1153.