Pilgrim badge: Nativity Star
Time period:14th – 15th Century
Product Dimensions: 44 x 44mm
A six pointed star with beaded border. This type of badge is often interpreted, probably incorrectly, as being a ‘Yorkist’ sun. It is far more likely to be a Star of Bethlehem pilgrim badge relating to a relic of the Nativity at an English shrine
This may be associated with the pilgrimages to Canterbury or Peterborough where relics of the crib were kept. Such was the magical symbolism of star badges that they were sometimes equipped with tiny mirrors in the belief that they were capable of capturing and subsequently transmitting the miraculous power of a relic or shrine.
The original of this badge when found, showed traces of gilding with a gold / mercury amalgam.