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A seven-pointed star

Bert45

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Year of past OR future Camino
(2003) Francés, (2014) Francés, (2016) Portugués , (2016) Aragonés, (2018) del Norte to Primitivo,
Can anybody tell me where I took the attached photo? It was between Ruela Entrerrúas and the Porta de la Gloria of the Cathedral. About 9 minutes from the former and 3 minutes from the latter. It was probably in Rúa do Vilar. If you can tell me what theletters and numbers mean in the panel at the bottom, that would be a bonus. Thanks.

1-camino 2 2014 120.JPG
 
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caminka

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a virtual walk along rua vilar didn't reveal any such plaques.
on the other hand, I spotted three coats-of-arms with a seven-pointed star on the outer walls of the cathedral complex. one in rua fonseca, one to the left of puerta de las platerias and one to the right of puerta santa.
 

Bert45

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(2003) Francés, (2014) Francés, (2016) Portugués , (2016) Aragonés, (2018) del Norte to Primitivo,
a virtual walk along rua vilar didn't reveal any such plaques.
on the other hand, I spotted three coats-of-arms with a seven-pointed star on the outer walls of the cathedral complex. one in rua fonseca, one to the left of puerta de las platerias and one to the right of puerta santa.
Thanks, caminka. I tried to find it using Streetview too, without success. I saw one (seven-pointed star) on the outer wall of the cathedral, but it wasn't between two arches. Anyone know the meaning/derivation of the seven-pointed star? The 'star' of David has six points, but it's nothing like the seven-pointed star on the walls in Santiago. I mean, the star of David is a hexagon with a triangle on each side, whereas the seven-pointed star above has seven 'lobes' going right to the centre. I usually take a photo after a photo such as this to tell me where the first photo was taken. But I didn't do it that time.
 

caminka

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wikipedia says:
  • The heptagram was used in Christianity to symbolize the seven days of creation and became a traditional symbol for warding off evil. The symbol is used in some Christian branches such as Catholicism and Orthodox Christianity.
I tried googling heptagrama and various forms of santiago, cathedral and the like, and not one find.

this is a completely wild guess, but perhaps if there is (was) another seven-pointed star somewhere on the northern and western side of the cathedral complex, it could mean protection from evil on all four sides?

the arches look a bit like the arches on the facade of san martino pinario. no plaque there, though.
 
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Bert45

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The star can have different meanings.

The reliëf with the expression "Campus Stellae " is a Latin toponymic form used to refer to Compostela.

Be safe, Peter 🙏
Now that you've said, that, Peter, I can suddenly read it! But, just a niggle, the CAMP is quite clear, but the next symbol looks like a 9. The next word seems to me to be ESTELLE. You've answered half my question, so thanks!
 

Bert45

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wikipedia says:
  • The heptagram was used in Christianity to symbolize the seven days of creation and became a traditional symbol for warding off evil. The symbol is used in some Christian branches such as Catholicism and Orthodox Christianity.
I tried googling heptagrama and various forms of santiago, cathedral and the like, and not one find.

this is a completely wild guess, but perhaps if there is (was) another seven-pointed star somewhere on the northern and western side of the cathedral complex, it could mean protection from evil on all four sides?

the arches look a bit like the arches on the facade of san martino pinario. no plaque there, though.
Thanks again, caminka. That's an interesting article on Wiki. Although our week has seven days, and we know that 'on the seventh day God rested', I quibble with Wiki on the 'seven days of creation'. The creation took six days. Also our seven-pointed star doesn't look like the geometric diagrams in the article. Our star is more like a flower with seven petals, with next-to-nothing in the centre. Surely the 'House of God' shouldn't need protection from evil? But I'm not suggesting that you are wrong in any way. All ideas are valid to me.
 

Arn

Veteran Member
There are many stories, in most cultures, that speak about the grouping of seven stars that form the brightest constellation in the sky because of it’s closeness to earth. It’s called “Pleiades”. It’s highly likely pilgrims could easily pick it out as they walked the Way to Santiago.
 

Kathar1na

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@caminka, ah, I, too, had a look at the Wikipedia entry on heptagrams 🙂. This sculpture on a yet unidentified house in Santiago de Compostela could be pretty much anything, I guess. My bet would be on heraldry.

Apart from that, I found something else but I don't know how accurate the information is, do you know anything about it? Apparently, in (some) Romanesque art, a seven-pointed star represented the "planetary stars", for example Saturn or Jupiter, while simple stars had six points and los luceros (not sure what that is. Venus? Sun?) had eight points.

I guess it really depended on the time and the sculptor whether the number of points had any specific meaning, and we may never figure out what it meant at the time. I had never paid attention to this but I now see that the tympanon of the Sepulchro church in Estella shows two 7-pointed stars in the crucifixion scene.
 

Kathar1na

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There's also a long entry on stars as iconographic items on https://xacopedia.com/estrella. The article says that these representations are largely limited to the town of Compostela. Mostly stars with eight points but also stars with other numbers of points can be found in Compostela. Became popular fairly late, mainly 16th and 17th century. All refer to the Saint James legend. Outside of Santiago, they never became as popular as the scallop motif.
 
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Kathar1na

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I usually take a photo after a photo such as this to tell me where the first photo was taken
I recommend a camera that records the location as GPS data within the metadata of the photo. A quite common feature now, even in cameras that are not expensive.
 

mspath

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Thank goodness that GPS info can also be recorded in smartphone cameras; it has saved me years of hassle.

Using Bert's image I did a search with Google Lens. A similar image came up in an online Shutterstock album by Tenreiro which further identifys the image with the following text

"Relief with the expression 'Campus Stellae', Latin toponymic form used to refer to Compostela Santiago de Compostela, Galicia, Spain 01/25/2019"​

thumb.jpg

By Tenreiro

Perhaps the photgrapher Tenreiro might be able to provide the exact location of this relief.

If so please do share the actual address with the Forum.

Good luck!
 
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caminka

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I remember from my essay on heraldry from way back at archeology that the stars in coats of arms could be represented as any type, the important point was that they were clearly seen as stars. from a distance, too, I presume.
but as the meanings of the objects evolved and the importance of heraldry on the battlefield diminished, stars with different numbers of points probably started representing different things. it largely depended on the one who was paying for the architecture/art, I think.

we also must not forget personal preferences people had then, as we have today.
 
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Kathar1na

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Somebody else, while walking into Santiago and to the Cathedral, also photographed the sculpture shown in the first post of this thread. The other photos taken in this context and shown on the blog make me think that these emblems are displayed on the Cathedral building itself or in the immediate vicinity. Here are two photos from the blog:

Emblem.jpg
 

caminka

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Somebody else, while walking into Santiago and to the Cathedral, also photographed the sculpture shown in the first post of this thread. The other photos taken in this context and shown on the blog make me think that these emblems are displayed on the Cathedral building itself or in the immediate vicinity. Here are two photos from the blog:

View attachment 94382
great find.

and now it really started to bug me. I have video walked around the cathedral at least two times already and I can't see anything!

my best guess would be the cloister wall on praza de las praterias. it has the arches, it has lots of medallions, it has the big scallop shell (if I remember correctly) and you can't see all of the arches because some are hidden behind the stairway.
 
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natefaith

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2009
Hi Bert,
I just put your photo and question to a Santiago friend group, and a couple of them said they think it's in the Praza das Praterias. I've been looking at photos on Google of the plaza and haven't found the star yet. But we all keep looking (there are about 6 of us in this Santiago group chat busily looking! :) )
 

Kathar1na

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There is definitely one 7-pointed star, with added flames for more brilliance and shining above the tomb of Saint James, on the side of the Praza das Praterias but this one is not the one:

More 7 pointed stars.jpg
 
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natefaith

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Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
2009
It can be see on the left side of this photo I took in the Praza das Praterias. This is a little tucked in corner (when facing the cathedral) on the left side of the steps leading up to the doors.

View attachment 94385
Thanks @Theatregal! You've made my Santiago friends happy, too, as they were all wondering exactly where it was!
 
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Bert45

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Thank you, Theatregal! THANK YOU! I don't remember going down there – off course not, if I did I wouldn't have started this quest. And thanks to all the other contributors. The one that Kathar1na found, above the one I was looking for, looks identical to the one on the south side of the cathedral in Rúa de Fonseca. The star in my photo has faintly carved 'flames' between the points – they are really just wavy lines, but I guess they represent flames. How satisfying to put his one to bed! [I will hope to get a camera with GPS next time :).]
 
Thank you, Theatregal! THANK YOU! I don't remember going down there – off course not, if I did I wouldn't have started this quest. And thanks to all the other contributors. The one that Kathar1na found, above the one I was looking for, looks identical to the one on the south side of the cathedral in Rúa de Fonseca. The star in my photo has faintly carved 'flames' between the points – they are really just wavy lines, but I guess they represent flames. How satisfying to put his one to bed! [I will hope to get a camera with GPS next time :).]
Helping to solve a mystery is always fun!! :D
 

caminka

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There is definitely one 7-pointed star, with added flames for more brilliance and shining above the tomb of Saint James, on the side of the Praza das Praterias but this one is not the one:

View attachment 94386
there are (at least) two more such stars on the walls around the cathedral: in rua fonseca and to the right of puerta santa.
 
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