The sword of Islam defeated at Poitiers in 732 A.D.
One could characterize this painting from 1837 (right) by Charles de Steuben as an historic visualization in the romantic style of the Napoleonic era over this great Christian victory over Islam. The painting is placed in the Versailles.
In this famous battle a small Frankish army under king Karl Martell won a great victory over a much larger Muslim military force. Poitiers is therefore regarded as an important turning point in the Europeans defence of their lands and their Christian faith against the Islamic conquest of the time.
The American author Raymond Ibrahim, originally a Christian Copt from Egypt, has written an slightly controversial article about this battle and its importance to the Christian civilization of Europe:
Precisely 100 years after the death of Islam’s prophet Muhammad in 632, his Arab followers, after having conquered thousands of miles of lands from Arabia to Spain, found themselves in Gaul, modern day France, facing a hitherto little known people, the Christian Franks.
There, around October 10-11, in the year 732, one of history’s most decisive battles took place, demarcating the extent of Islam’s western conquests and ensuring the survival of the West.
Prior to this, the Islamic conquerors had for one century been subjugating all peoples and territories standing in their western march—including Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, and Morocco. In 711, the Muslims made their fateful crossing of the straits of Gibraltar, landing on European soil. Upon disembarkation, the leader of the Muslims, Tariq bin Zayid, ordered the Islamic fleet burned, explaining that “We have not come here to return. Either we conquer and establish ourselves here, or we perish.”
For the full story, read here.