Peter The Hermit, the apostle of 'the first crusade, born of good family in the diocese of Amiens, France, about the middle of the 11th century, died in a monastery near Huy in 1115. After trying several pursuits, he became a hermit, and about 1093 undertook a pilgrimage to Jerusalem, where the oppressions which he witnessed and experienced determined him to arouse the people of Christendom to undertake a war for the liberation of the holy sepulchre. (See Crusades.) The first host of crusaders was led by Peter himself. A part of it separated from the rest under the command of Walter the Penniless, and was destroyed in Bulgaria. The principal division reached no further than Nice, where they were defeated by the Moslems. Peter had left them before this, and his name was associated with the succeeding expedition under Godfrey of Bouillon. While the crusaders were besieged in Antioch, he deserted, but was captured by Tancred and brought back. On the conquest of Jerusalem he preached a sermon to the crusaders on the mount of Olives. After this he returned to Europe and founded the abbey of Neufmoutier, near Huy, where he passed the rest of his life.
There is a statue in bronze of Peter the Hermit in the place St. Michel in Amiens.