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The Crusades were military campaigns sanctioned by the Latin Roman Catholic Church during the High Middle Ages and Late Middle Ages. In 1095, Pope Urban II proclaimed the First Crusade with the stated goal of restoring Christian access to holy places in and near Jerusalem.
The Knights Templar trace their origin back to shortly after the First Crusade. Around 1119, a French nobleman from the Champagne region, Hugues de Payens, collected eight of his knighted relatives including Godfrey de Saint-Omer, and began the Order, their stated mission to protect pilgrims on their journey to visit the Holy Places.