The sword and the staff - art and architecture on the Pilgrim Way to Santiago de Compostela

The ‘discovery’ of the body of the Apostle, St James, proved a useful and timely propaganda tool just as the Christians in northern Spain began their re-conquest of Spain from the Moors.  It opened a new European pilgrimage route, and by the 12th century the Way to Santiago de Compostela, or the Camino, was a well trodden route.  Hospitals, monasteries, churches and shrines grew up all along the Camino to attend to the spiritual and worldly needs of the pilgrims, and the large cities along it also prospered and expanded. Pilgrims’ tales abound – and the Camino still exerts a fascination making it as popular today as it ever was.  Gail has walked it.