One of the legends of the true cross tells of the journey of Helena, Constantine’s mother, to find the cross upon which Christ was crucified, which she found; ever after throughout medieval Christendom, bits of wood were hawked to pilgrims as pieces of the True Cross. The pendant talisman of Charlemagne, first Holy Roman Emperor, contains a piece of the True Cross, enshrined beneath a rock crystal jewel, with which he was entombed. A cycle of legends about the tree that was the source of the cross includes the story that it grew from a seed placed in the mouth of Adam’s corpse. All, I think the effort of folk to give faith material substance, alas, not such a simple matter, and one that makes us vulnerable to charlatans.
This necklace began as an old rosary, of dusty dry wooden beads, with only a fragment of the broken crucifix left hanging, which did make me think of the true cross phenomenon. To this I’ve added a pendant of oxidized copper in the shape of an eye, with milagros below – leg, foot, arm and hand, with the fragment hanging below. It makes a rustic and mysterious talisman, which I have charged with the duty to protect its owner from charlatans, mountebanks, and liars of all kinds.
It just might help. If you think about it.