The goal of this website is to be a safe for souls website advancing Catholic thinking and education. When editing, please adhere to the Content Standards.
Some images have been enhanced for teaching purposes and may not be identical to the original artwork.
The six-pointed Marian star is the proper star polygon for Roman Catholic usage.
The Marian star is a symmetric six-pointed star polygon. It has six concave vertices and six convex vertices, which together equal a total of twelve vertices. It is currently unknown to the editors of this article as to the precise proportions of the Marian star, if indeed it has precise proportions, but its approximate notation appears to be 6/2.5. Its standard spoke ratio is approximately .4, but it may also be depicted with a spoke ratio as low as .333. Like the hexagram (in Christian symbolism the Star of David), it can be formed throught the inverted or extraverted extension of lines from a regular hexagon and, if its points are truncated, it becomes a regular hexagon. Unlike the hexagram, the intersection of inverted or extraverted lines does not result in a regular hexagon, and only half of the points used in the formation of the star lines are vertices of a regular hexagram (the other half of the points are on the sides of the hexagon approximately half-way between the vertices of the hexagon).
A rough sketch of the relationship of the Marian star's lines to a hexagon
The Marian star is the Roman Catholic symbol which is the proper shape for depictions of artistic celestial objects related to the Blessed Virgin Mary and all other cases except when the Star of David is the appropriate symbol. The Marian star is improperly substituted with the five-pointed star on a frequent basis, particularly in the case of most Miraculous Medals manufactured at the time of the writing of this article.
If the story about Betsy Ross and the creation of the first US Flag is indeed historical, the Marian star would probably have been used on the US Flag had it not been for her intervention. It was featured on Hopkinson's Flag, however.
The Marian star is featured on the railings of pedestrian crossways in Downtown Chicago. A custom shape in PhotoImpact Pro could be considered acceptable for use as a Marian star (it does have a high spoke ratio, however) The Marian star is featured on the altar of the Jesuit Colombiere Center in Clarkston, Michigan.
Flags that use the Marian star
The Chicago flag features four Marian stars.
One version of Francis Hopkinson's design for a U.S. flag This flag is sometimes depicted with Marian stars. The Marian star appears on the flag of Chicago, Illinois. The star is also used as a decorative motif throughout the city, such as on railings of pedestrian walkways in the downtown area. Each star stands for a different part of the city's history, from the city's founding, destruction, and World's Fairs. In addition, each point of each star stands for a different virtue, government, or city nickname.
Francis Hopkinson, a U.S. founding father, designed an early proposal for the national flag with six-pointed stars instead of five. These stars are depicted either as Marian stars or with thicker angles like those of a hexagram. As in the final design of the flag, each star represents one of the 13 states in the union.
^ Specifications if creating it with Inkscape; the Star of David has a spoke ratio of approximately .58 ^ Much of this information was obtained from the works of Rev. Siegfried Lang, ORC and was contained in a series "The Mystery of the Thirteenth of Fatima," which was apparently discontinued by the publisher ^ Some Miraculous Medals also improperly contain the seven-pointed star rather than the Marian star, but these are much fewer in number.