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This fifteenth-century stone mould fragment was made to cast openwork lead alloy badges, which were sold to pilgrims as souvenirs at the shrine of St Thomas Becket. Here we see a representation of St Thomas Becket returning from exile in Normandy, an important moment in the story of the saint’s life.
Becket became Archbishop of Canterbury after being Royal Chancellor of England. His dual roles placed him at odds with the king and, as a result, he was murdered in Canterbury Cathedral in 1170 by Henry II’s knights. With his death, a popular cult arose, he was made a saint and many travelled to Kent to venerate his shrine. H: 97 mm W: 85 mm D: 24 mm http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/collection_online/collection_object_details.aspx?objectId=49769&partId=1&searchText=1890,1002.1&page=1
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