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IMC 2019: Sessions

Session 1536: Pinning Down Protection, I: New Research into Late Medieval Pilgrim and Secular Badges

Thursday 4 July 2019, 09.00-10.30

Sponsor:Rijksmuseum van Oudheden, Leiden
Organiser:Annemarieke Willemsen, Rijksmuseum van Oudheden, Leiden
Moderator/Chair:Annemarieke Willemsen, Rijksmuseum van Oudheden, Leiden
Paper 1536-aThe Polyfunctionality of Script on Medieval Badges
(Language: English)
Ann Marie Rasmussen, Department of Germanic & Slavic Studies, University of Waterloo, Ontario
Index terms: Archaeology - Artefacts, Daily Life, Language and Literature - German, Literacy and Orality
Paper 1536-bSaints and Sinners: Medieval Badges Excavated in Denmark
(Language: English)
Mette Højmark Søvsø, Department of Collections, Sydvestjyske Museer, Ribe
Index terms: Archaeology - Artefacts, Archaeology - General, Daily Life, Religious Life
Paper 1536-cFace to Face with Becket: Pilgrim Souvenirs in Canterbury Collections
(Language: English)
Lucy Splarn, Archives & Library, Canterbury Cathedral
Index terms: Archaeology - Artefacts, Daily Life, Local History, Religious Life

The research into pilgrim and secular badges flourishes. These tiny, fragile, mostly pewter objects were mass-produced but bought individually, and worn on the body for commemoration, piety, protection, identification, and a bit of fun. After being worn, they were kept as souvenirs and sometimes placed in tombs with the deceased. Badges from the 12th to 16th century are excavated all over Europe and also depicted in art and referenced in texts, which indicates why people wore them. These often very detailed badges broaden the knowledge about travelling objects, transport of knowledge, and visual literacy in the late-medieval world.