The six-pointed star, later known as the "Star of David," was an apotropaic sign widely used throughout the ancient world. It was adopted as a Jewish symbol as early as the 7th century B.C. and gained popularity as a decorative symbol by Jews and non-Jews alike throughout the Hellenistic world. It became a religious symbol for Jews, Christians and Muslims into the Medieval Period, when it eventually came to be identified solely as a Jewish symbol. See Scholem, "Magen David" in Roth, et al., eds., Encycolpaedia Judaica.