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7 Conclusions

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Chapter Summary

This conclusion presents some closing thoughts of the concepts discussed in the book The Crusade Indulgence. One feature that defined the crusades particularly in distinction to other wars was the opportunity for the warriors to win a spiritual reward. As the institutions of the crusade evolved, this reward became embedded in the special indulgence that was promised to crusaders. The book follows aspects of this process of institutionalisation and of the belief in a spiritual reward for crusades in papal documents and in theological tracts of the twelfth century. The examination of the statute on crusade indulgences has shown that the popes appear to have grown more confident in their powers to grant indulgences, but not that their views on them changed profoundly during our period. The crusader's own contrition and efforts had to provide for the penance that was remitted.

Keywords: crusade indulgences; papal documents; penance; spiritual reward; theological tracts; warriors



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