In old buildings many subtly carved marks can be found on stone, plaster and timber with a variety of meanings and purposes. There are masons’ marks, carpenter’s marks, merchants marks, shipping marks, historic graffiti (covers a wide range) and then there are protection marks.
In this short presentation Brian Hoggard will explain the differences between those broad categories of marks and then focus on the range of protection marks you might come across in churches. These include; Marian marks, Christograms, daisy-wheels and circles, burn marks, shoe outlines, hand outlines, mesh marks and pentagrams. The thinking required to understand them requires the suspension of some of your logic and science knowledge.
Brian has been working with CCT since July 2019 but has been conducting research into the archaeology of magical building protection since 1999. He has a popular website at www.apotropaios.co.uk and in 2019 his book, Magical House Protection – The Archaeology of Counter-Witchcraft was published by Berghahn Books. When not in lock-down he lectures widely for groups all over the UK and Europe. In recent years clients have included the National Trust, English Heritage, Institute for Historic Buildings Conservation, SPAB, Museum of Witchcraft, Henry Moore Institute, Aarhus University (Denmark) and the Romanian Academy in Iasi.