Description:This coin was hand struck in the name of the Holy Roman Emperor Conrad II, who also reigned as the King of Italy during the 11th century. The obverse of this coin features the Jerusalem Cross, also known as the Crusader Cross, with the legend "Conrad Rex". The reverse side shows a castle with a cross above. These silver denaro coins were first minted in Genoa Italy to pay the troops and they ultimately became standard currency for the people. Crusader coins from Genoa became widely accepted throughout the region and they continued to be struck for two centuries.
This cross coin circulated as the Western World was recovering from the Dark Ages and Crusaders from Europe massed their armies in an effort to recapture Jerusalem and the Holy Land from Muslim rule. The Crusades were fought over a period of nearly 200 years, between 1095 and 1291. These wars were brutal and in many ways misguided, but the Crusades had far-reaching political, economic, and social impacts throughout the region. Also, during the Crusades, trade greatly increased and a tremendous amount of knowledge in science, medicine and architecture was brought back to the Western World from Constantinople, which led to the Renaissance in later centuries.