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Chapter Summary

This chapter examines the role of crusading in late medieval and early modern Denmark from about 1400 to 1650. It first investigates the role of the crusade, politically and ideologically, in Denmark from the founding of the Kalmar Union consisting of three Nordic kingdoms Denmark, Norway, and Sweden-Finland in 1397 (which lasted to 1523), to the Reformation in 1536. Second, the chapter points to a number of ways in which crusade ideology lived on during the Reformation period and beyond, well into the seventeenth century, up to the death of King Christian IV in 1648. The first half of the nineteenth century witnessed the birth of modern historiography on the crusades with the publication of Heinrichvon Sybel’s Geschichte des ersten Kreuzzugs in 1841. After “the golden age”, Danish historians tended to view crusading ideology as merely a pretext, concealing economic and political motives.

Keywords: crusade ideology; Denmark; golden age; nordic kingdoms; reformation period



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