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Trumpeter of Cracow

~The Trumpeter Of Cracow~

A stamped lead pewter design mounted over a painted metal background; plain brass collet, brass back and self shank.

The button was originally identified as the trumpeter who played the Heynal, an ancient hymn to the Holy Mother, every hour from the tower of the Church of St. Mary in Cracow. This custom was observed until the occupation of Poland by the Germans in 1939. The playing of the Heynal was a very old tradition which went back many centuries. The trumpeter was also a kind of watchman who signaled if he observed approaching danger from his vantage point high above the city.

During the Tartar invasion of Poland in the 13th century, the trumpeter was killed by an arrow as he played the Heynal, and afterwards, to commemorate him, the hymn was ended abruptly, as the young trumpeter’s had been centuries before. 

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