Ian Wilson never fails to delight. In the la test BSTS Newsletter, issue 78, he offers us, The Machy Version of the Lirey Pilgrim’s Badge – A Revised Reconstruction. To whet your appetite:
But the potentially far more signiﬁcant fact about the two badges is that they exhibit some quite unmistakeable differences from each other. Thus on the Paris badge we see Geoffroi de Charny’s coat of arms on the left and Jeanne de Vergy’s on the right, while on the Machy badge these positions are reversed. On the Paris badge we see below the depiction of the Shroud a roundel of Christ’s empty tomb accompanied by instruments of the Passion: the crown of thorns, the scourge whip, etc, whereas on the Machy badge this same position is occupied only by a disembodied Christ face with what appear to be stars each side. On the Paris badge the Shroud’s herringbone weave is depicted with astonishing ﬁdelity, while on the Machy version the weave runs in the wrong direction. Another important difference, one which I am particularly indebted to Thomas de Wesselow for drawing to my attention, is that whoever created the Paris badge was someone of signiﬁcantly superior artistry to whoever created the Machy version.
Yet what bothered me, even from the very outset, was the rather crude delineation of those ‘stars’. Artists’ depictions of the eight-pointed star associated with the Company of the Star are usually a lot better deﬁned than those on the Machy mould. And because some of the features on the mould are not intended to be seen on the ﬁnished badge, but are there as ﬂues, etc., for conducting the hot metal that would have been used during the badge-making process, there had to be a possibility that this was the true function of the apparent ‘stars’.