Amulet
Overview
 
An amulet, similar to a talisman ( / transliterated: ), is any object intended to bring good luck
Luck
Luck or fortuity is good fortune which occurs beyond one's control, without regard to one's will, intention, or desired result. There are at least two senses people usually mean when they use the term, the prescriptive sense and the descriptive sense...

 or protection to its owner.
Potential amulets include gems
Gemstone
A gemstone or gem is a piece of mineral, which, in cut and polished form, is used to make jewelry or other adornments...

, especially engraved gems, statue
Statue
A statue is a sculpture in the round representing a person or persons, an animal, an idea or an event, normally full-length, as opposed to a bust, and at least close to life-size, or larger...

s, coin
Coin
A coin is a piece of hard material that is standardized in weight, is produced in large quantities in order to facilitate trade, and primarily can be used as a legal tender token for commerce in the designated country, region, or territory....

s, drawing
Drawing
Drawing is a form of visual art that makes use of any number of drawing instruments to mark a two-dimensional medium. Common instruments include graphite pencils, pen and ink, inked brushes, wax color pencils, crayons, charcoal, chalk, pastels, markers, styluses, and various metals .An artist who...

s, pendant
Pendant
A pendant is a loose-hanging piece of jewellery, generally attached by a small loop to a necklace, when the ensemble may be known as a "pendant necklace". A pendant earring is an earring with a piece hanging down. In modern French "pendant" is the gerund form of “hanging”...

s, rings, plant
Plant
Plants are living organisms belonging to the kingdom Plantae. Precise definitions of the kingdom vary, but as the term is used here, plants include familiar organisms such as trees, flowers, herbs, bushes, grasses, vines, ferns, mosses, and green algae. The group is also called green plants or...

s and animal
Animal
Animals are a major group of multicellular, eukaryotic organisms of the kingdom Animalia or Metazoa. Their body plan eventually becomes fixed as they develop, although some undergo a process of metamorphosis later on in their life. Most animals are motile, meaning they can move spontaneously and...

s; even word
Word
In language, a word is the smallest free form that may be uttered in isolation with semantic or pragmatic content . This contrasts with a morpheme, which is the smallest unit of meaning but will not necessarily stand on its own...

s said in certain occasions—for example: vade retro satana
Vade retro satana
Vade retro satana is a Medieval Catholic formula for exorcism, recorded in a 1415 manuscript found in the Benedictine Metten Abbey in Bavaria and its origin is traditionally associated with the Benedictines....

—(Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

, "go back, Satan
Satan
Satan , "the opposer", is the title of various entities, both human and divine, who challenge the faith of humans in the Hebrew Bible...

"), to repel evil
Evil
Evil is the violation of, or intent to violate, some moral code. Evil is usually seen as the dualistic opposite of good. Definitions of evil vary along with analysis of its root motive causes, however general actions commonly considered evil include: conscious and deliberate wrongdoing,...

 or bad luck.

The word "amulet" comes from the Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 amuletum; the earliest extant use of the term is in Pliny
Pliny the Elder
Gaius Plinius Secundus , better known as Pliny the Elder, was a Roman author, naturalist, and natural philosopher, as well as naval and army commander of the early Roman Empire, and personal friend of the emperor Vespasian...

's Natural History, meaning "an object that protects a person from trouble".
In antiquity and the Middle Ages, most Jews, Christian
Christian
A Christian is a person who adheres to Christianity, an Abrahamic, monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth as recorded in the Canonical gospels and the letters of the New Testament...

s and Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

s in the Orient
Orient
The Orient means "the East." It is a traditional designation for anything that belongs to the Eastern world or the Far East, in relation to Europe. In English it is a metonym that means various parts of Asia.- Derivation :...

 believed in the protective and healing power of amulets or blessed objects.
Discussions
Encyclopedia
An amulet, similar to a talisman ( / transliterated: ), is any object intended to bring good luck
Luck
Luck or fortuity is good fortune which occurs beyond one's control, without regard to one's will, intention, or desired result. There are at least two senses people usually mean when they use the term, the prescriptive sense and the descriptive sense...

 or protection to its owner.
Potential amulets include gems
Gemstone
A gemstone or gem is a piece of mineral, which, in cut and polished form, is used to make jewelry or other adornments...

, especially engraved gems, statue
Statue
A statue is a sculpture in the round representing a person or persons, an animal, an idea or an event, normally full-length, as opposed to a bust, and at least close to life-size, or larger...

s, coin
Coin
A coin is a piece of hard material that is standardized in weight, is produced in large quantities in order to facilitate trade, and primarily can be used as a legal tender token for commerce in the designated country, region, or territory....

s, drawing
Drawing
Drawing is a form of visual art that makes use of any number of drawing instruments to mark a two-dimensional medium. Common instruments include graphite pencils, pen and ink, inked brushes, wax color pencils, crayons, charcoal, chalk, pastels, markers, styluses, and various metals .An artist who...

s, pendant
Pendant
A pendant is a loose-hanging piece of jewellery, generally attached by a small loop to a necklace, when the ensemble may be known as a "pendant necklace". A pendant earring is an earring with a piece hanging down. In modern French "pendant" is the gerund form of “hanging”...

s, rings, plant
Plant
Plants are living organisms belonging to the kingdom Plantae. Precise definitions of the kingdom vary, but as the term is used here, plants include familiar organisms such as trees, flowers, herbs, bushes, grasses, vines, ferns, mosses, and green algae. The group is also called green plants or...

s and animal
Animal
Animals are a major group of multicellular, eukaryotic organisms of the kingdom Animalia or Metazoa. Their body plan eventually becomes fixed as they develop, although some undergo a process of metamorphosis later on in their life. Most animals are motile, meaning they can move spontaneously and...

s; even word
Word
In language, a word is the smallest free form that may be uttered in isolation with semantic or pragmatic content . This contrasts with a morpheme, which is the smallest unit of meaning but will not necessarily stand on its own...

s said in certain occasions—for example: vade retro satana
Vade retro satana
Vade retro satana is a Medieval Catholic formula for exorcism, recorded in a 1415 manuscript found in the Benedictine Metten Abbey in Bavaria and its origin is traditionally associated with the Benedictines....

—(Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

, "go back, Satan
Satan
Satan , "the opposer", is the title of various entities, both human and divine, who challenge the faith of humans in the Hebrew Bible...

"), to repel evil
Evil
Evil is the violation of, or intent to violate, some moral code. Evil is usually seen as the dualistic opposite of good. Definitions of evil vary along with analysis of its root motive causes, however general actions commonly considered evil include: conscious and deliberate wrongdoing,...

 or bad luck.

The word "amulet" comes from the Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 amuletum; the earliest extant use of the term is in Pliny
Pliny the Elder
Gaius Plinius Secundus , better known as Pliny the Elder, was a Roman author, naturalist, and natural philosopher, as well as naval and army commander of the early Roman Empire, and personal friend of the emperor Vespasian...

's Natural History, meaning "an object that protects a person from trouble".

Talismans in the Abrahamic religions

In antiquity and the Middle Ages, most Jews, Christian
Christian
A Christian is a person who adheres to Christianity, an Abrahamic, monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth as recorded in the Canonical gospels and the letters of the New Testament...

s and Muslim
Muslim
A Muslim, also spelled Moslem, is an adherent of Islam, a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion based on the Quran, which Muslims consider the verbatim word of God as revealed to prophet Muhammad. "Muslim" is the Arabic term for "submitter" .Muslims believe that God is one and incomparable...

s in the Orient
Orient
The Orient means "the East." It is a traditional designation for anything that belongs to the Eastern world or the Far East, in relation to Europe. In English it is a metonym that means various parts of Asia.- Derivation :...

 believed in the protective and healing power of amulets or blessed objects. Talismans used by these peoples can be broken down into three main categories: talismans carried or worn on the body, talismans hung upon or above the bed of an infirm person, and medicinal talismans. This third category can be further divided into external and internal talismans. For example, an external amulet can be placed in a bath.

Jews, Christians, and Muslims have also at times used their holy books in a talisman-like manner in grave situations. For example, a bed-ridden and seriously ill person would have a holy book placed under part of the bed or cushion.

Judaism

Amulets are plentiful in the Jewish tradition, with examples of Solomon
Solomon
Solomon , according to the Book of Kings and the Book of Chronicles, a King of Israel and according to the Talmud one of the 48 prophets, is identified as the son of David, also called Jedidiah in 2 Samuel 12:25, and is described as the third king of the United Monarchy, and the final king before...

-era amulets existing in many museum
Museum
A museum is an institution that cares for a collection of artifacts and other objects of scientific, artistic, cultural, or historical importance and makes them available for public viewing through exhibits that may be permanent or temporary. Most large museums are located in major cities...

s. Due to proscription of idols
Cult image
In the practice of religion, a cult image is a human-made object that is venerated for the deity, spirit or daemon that it embodies or represents...

, Jewish amulets emphasize text and names—the shape, material or color of an amulet makes no difference. See also Khamsa
Hamsa
Hamsa or Khamsa can refer to:*Arabic  "five, quintet"** Ḫamsa, a Near Eastern symbol often used as a protective amulet** a commonly used alternative name for the Panj Ganj or Quinary, ie quintet of Nizami's first five great epics*Sanskrit ...

.


The Jewish tallis
Tallis
-People:* Gorden Tallis, an Australian rugby league player* John Tallis, cartographer* Raymond Tallis, an English geriatrician and intellectual* Thomas Tallis , an English composer-Other:...

 (Yiddish-Hebrew form; plural is tallitot), the prayer
Prayer
Prayer is a form of religious practice that seeks to activate a volitional rapport to a deity through deliberate practice. Prayer may be either individual or communal and take place in public or in private. It may involve the use of words or song. When language is used, prayer may take the form of...

 shawl with fringed corners and knotted tassels at each corner, is perhaps one of the world's oldest and most used talismanic objects. Some believe it was intended to distinguish the Jews from pagans, as well as to remind them of God and Heaven. An incorrect conjugation of the plural form (with Ashkenazi pronunciation), "tallisim," is very close to the term "talisman;" however, the word "talisman" is of Greek origin.

Christianity

The Catholic Church, and Christian authorities in general, have always been wary of amulets and other talismans. However, the legitimate use of sacramentals
Sacramentals
Sacramentals are material objects, things or actions set apart or blessed by the Roman Catholic Church, the Orthodox Churches, the Anglican Churches, and Old Catholic Churches to manifest the respect due to the Sacraments, and so to excite good thoughts and to increase devotion, and through these...

, as long as one has the proper disposition, is encouraged in traditional Christianity. For example, the crucifix
Crucifix
A crucifix is an independent image of Jesus on the cross with a representation of Jesus' body, referred to in English as the corpus , as distinct from a cross with no body....

 is considered a powerful apotropaic against demon
Demon
call - 1347 531 7769 for more infoIn Ancient Near Eastern religions as well as in the Abrahamic traditions, including ancient and medieval Christian demonology, a demon is considered an "unclean spirit" which may cause demonic possession, to be addressed with an act of exorcism...

s and fallen spirits, and rosaries
Rosary
The rosary or "garland of roses" is a traditional Catholic devotion. The term denotes the prayer beads used to count the series of prayers that make up the rosary...

 or St. Christopher medals are frequently hung on rear-view mirrors of vehicles in Christian cultures as a way of invoking God's protection during travel.

Lay Catholics are not permitted to perform exorcism
Exorcism
Exorcism is the religious practice of evicting demons or other spiritual entities from a person or place which they are believed to have possessed...

s but they can use Holy water
Holy water
Holy water is water that, in Catholicism, Anglicanism, Eastern Orthodoxy, Lutheranism, Oriental Orthodoxy, and some other churches, has been sanctified by a priest for the purpose of baptism, the blessing of persons, places, and objects; or as a means of repelling evil.The use for baptism and...

, blessed salt and other sacramentals
Sacramentals
Sacramentals are material objects, things or actions set apart or blessed by the Roman Catholic Church, the Orthodox Churches, the Anglican Churches, and Old Catholic Churches to manifest the respect due to the Sacraments, and so to excite good thoughts and to increase devotion, and through these...

 such as the Saint Benedict Medal
Saint Benedict Medal
The Saint Benedict Medal is a Catholic sacramental medal containing symbols and text related to the life of Saint Benedict of Nursia. In use since at least the seventeenth century, it is used to ward off spiritual and physical dangers, especially those related to witchcraft, poison, and temptation...

 or the Crucifix
Crucifix
A crucifix is an independent image of Jesus on the cross with a representation of Jesus' body, referred to in English as the corpus , as distinct from a cross with no body....

 for warding off evil.

Crucifix

The Crucifix
Crucifix
A crucifix is an independent image of Jesus on the cross with a representation of Jesus' body, referred to in English as the corpus , as distinct from a cross with no body....

 is one of the key sacramentals
Sacramentals
Sacramentals are material objects, things or actions set apart or blessed by the Roman Catholic Church, the Orthodox Churches, the Anglican Churches, and Old Catholic Churches to manifest the respect due to the Sacraments, and so to excite good thoughts and to increase devotion, and through these...

 used by Catholics and has been used to ward off evil for centuries. The imperial cross of Conrad II
Conrad II, Holy Roman Emperor
Conrad II was Holy Roman Emperor from 1027 until his death.The son of a mid-level nobleman in Franconia, Count Henry of Speyer and Adelaide of Alsace, he inherited the titles of count of Speyer and of Worms as an infant when Henry died at age twenty...

 (1024–1039) referred to the power of the cross against evil. Many of the early theologians of the Catholic Church made reference to use of the sign of the Cross
Sign of the cross
The Sign of the Cross , or crossing oneself, is a ritual hand motion made by members of many branches of Christianity, often accompanied by spoken or mental recitation of a trinitarian formula....

 by Christians to bless and to ward off demonic influences.

The crucifix is still widely used as a talismanic sacramental
Sacramental
Sacramental may refer to:* Sacramental, as an adjective means of or pertaining to sacraments* Sacramentals, in Roman Catholicism and Anglicanism, objects whose supernatural effects, unlike those of a sacrament, depend on the belief of the recipient...

 by Christians. In Christian culture, it is considered to be one of the most effective means of averting or opposing demons, as stated by many exorcists, including the famous exorcist of the Vatican, Father Gabriele Amorth
Gabriele Amorth
Gabriele Amorth is an Italian Roman Catholic priest and an exorcist of the Diocese of Rome who claims to have cleansed tens of thousands of people of evil spirits. Controversially, he believes that practising yoga is satanic and leads to evil just like reading JK Rowling’s Harry Potter...

.

Medals

A well-known amulet among Catholic Christians is the Saint Benedict Medal
Saint Benedict Medal
The Saint Benedict Medal is a Catholic sacramental medal containing symbols and text related to the life of Saint Benedict of Nursia. In use since at least the seventeenth century, it is used to ward off spiritual and physical dangers, especially those related to witchcraft, poison, and temptation...

 which includes the Vade Retro Satana
Vade retro satana
Vade retro satana is a Medieval Catholic formula for exorcism, recorded in a 1415 manuscript found in the Benedictine Metten Abbey in Bavaria and its origin is traditionally associated with the Benedictines....

formula to ward off Satan. This medal has been in use at least since the 18th century and in 1742 it received the approval of Pope Benedict XIV
Pope Benedict XIV
Pope Benedict XIV , born Prospero Lorenzo Lambertini, was Pope from 17 August 1740 to 3 May 1758.-Life:...

. It later became part of the Roman Catholic ritual.

Scapulars

Some Catholic sacramentals
Sacramentals
Sacramentals are material objects, things or actions set apart or blessed by the Roman Catholic Church, the Orthodox Churches, the Anglican Churches, and Old Catholic Churches to manifest the respect due to the Sacraments, and so to excite good thoughts and to increase devotion, and through these...

 are believed to defend against evil, by virtue of their association with a specific saint or archangel. The Scapular of St. Michael the Archangel
Scapular of St. Michael the Archangel
The Scapular of St. Michael is a Roman Catholic devotional scapular associated with St. Michael, the Archangel.Pope Pius IX gave this scapular his blessing, but it was first formally approved under Pope Leo XIII, who sanctioned the Archconfraternity of the Scapular of St. Michael. Indulgences were...

is a Roman Catholic devotional scapular associated with Archangel Michael, the chief enemy of Satan. Pope Pius IX
Pope Pius IX
Blessed Pope Pius IX , born Giovanni Maria Mastai-Ferretti, was the longest-reigning elected Pope in the history of the Catholic Church, serving from 16 June 1846 until his death, a period of nearly 32 years. During his pontificate, he convened the First Vatican Council in 1869, which decreed papal...

 gave this scapular his blessing, but it was first formally approved under Pope Leo XIII
Pope Leo XIII
Pope Leo XIII , born Vincenzo Gioacchino Raffaele Luigi Pecci to an Italian comital family, was the 256th Pope of the Roman Catholic Church, reigning from 1878 to 1903...

.

The form of this scapular is somewhat distinct, in that the two segments of cloth that constitute it have the form of a small shield; one is made of blue and the other of black cloth, and one of the bands likewise is blue and the other black. Both portions of the scapular bear the well-known representation of the Archangel St. Michael slaying the dragon and the inscription "Quis ut Deus?
Quis ut Deus?
Quis ut Deus?, a Latin sentence meaning "Who is like God?", is a literal translation of the name Michael ."Michael" appears as the name of several men in the Old Testament. In the Book of Daniel it is the name of the "prince" of the people of Israel...

" meaning Who is like God?.

Holy water

The Catechism of the Catholic Church
Catechism of the Catholic Church
The Catechism of the Catholic Church is the official text of the teachings of the Catholic Church. A provisional, "reference text" was issued by Pope John Paul II on October 11, 1992 — "the thirtieth anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council" — with his apostolic...

 (number 301) specifically refers to the use of holy water
Holy water
Holy water is water that, in Catholicism, Anglicanism, Eastern Orthodoxy, Lutheranism, Oriental Orthodoxy, and some other churches, has been sanctified by a priest for the purpose of baptism, the blessing of persons, places, and objects; or as a means of repelling evil.The use for baptism and...

 for "protection from the powers of darkness." Catholic saints have written about the power of holy water
Holy water
Holy water is water that, in Catholicism, Anglicanism, Eastern Orthodoxy, Lutheranism, Oriental Orthodoxy, and some other churches, has been sanctified by a priest for the purpose of baptism, the blessing of persons, places, and objects; or as a means of repelling evil.The use for baptism and...

 as a force that repels evil. Saint Teresa of Avila
Teresa of Ávila
Saint Teresa of Ávila, also called Saint Teresa of Jesus, baptized as Teresa Sánchez de Cepeda y Ahumada, was a prominent Spanish mystic, Roman Catholic saint, Carmelite nun, and writer of the Counter Reformation, and theologian of contemplative life through mental prayer...

, a Doctor of the Church
Doctor of the Church
Doctor of the Church is a title given by a variety of Christian churches to individuals whom they recognize as having been of particular importance, particularly regarding their contribution to theology or doctrine.-Catholic Church:In the Catholic Church, this name is given to a saint from whose...

 who reported visions of Jesus and Mary
Visions of Jesus and Mary
Since the Crucifixion of Jesus Christ on Calvary until today, a number of people have claimed to have had visions of Christ and personal conversations with him. Some people make similar claims regarding the Blessed Virgin Mary. Discussions about the authenticity of these visions have often invited...

, was a strong believer in the power of Holy water and wrote that she used it with success to repel evil and temptations.

Amulets and ancient Rome

The amulet is particularly prevalent in ancient Roman society, being the inheritor of the ancient Greek
Greece
Greece , officially the Hellenic Republic , and historically Hellas or the Republic of Greece in English, is a country in southeastern Europe....

 tradition, and inextricably linked to Roman Religion
Roman religion
The term Roman religion may refer to:*Ancient Roman religion*religions of the Roman Empire period **Imperial cult *** Sol Invictus**Mithraism**Early Christianity**Gnosticism**State church of the Roman Empire...

 and Magic (see Magic in the Greco-Roman World
Magic in the Greco-Roman world
The study of magic in the Greco-Roman world is a branch of the disciplines of classics, ancient history and religious studies. In the ancient post-hellenistic world of the Greeks and Romans , the public and private rituals associated with religion are accepted by historians and archaeologists to...

). Amulets are usually outside of the normal sphere of religious experience though associations between certain gemstones and gods has been suggested, for example, Jupiter
Jupiter (mythology)
In ancient Roman religion and myth, Jupiter or Jove is the king of the gods, and the god of the sky and thunder. He is the equivalent of Zeus in the Greek pantheon....

 is represented on milky chalcedony
Chalcedony
Chalcedony is a cryptocrystalline form of silica, composed of very fine intergrowths of the minerals quartz and moganite. These are both silica minerals, but they differ in that quartz has a trigonal crystal structure, while moganite is monoclinic...

, Sol
Sol
Soľ is a village and municipality in Vranov nad Topľou District in the Prešov Region of eastern Slovakia.-Geography:The municipality lies at an altitude of 140 metres and covers an area of 10.286 km². It has a population of about 2,293 people....

 on heliotrope
Heliotrope
Heliotrope may refer to:Natural science* Heliotropium, a genus of flowering plants* A plant that exhibits heliotropism, diurnal motion in response to the sun's movement* Heliotrope Media and entertainment...

, Mars
Mars
Mars is the fourth planet from the Sun in the Solar System. The planet is named after the Roman god of war, Mars. It is often described as the "Red Planet", as the iron oxide prevalent on its surface gives it a reddish appearance...

 on red jasper
Jasper
Jasper, a form of chalcedony, is an opaque, impure variety of silica, usually red, yellow, brown or green in color; and rarely blue. This mineral breaks with a smooth surface, and is used for ornamentation or as a gemstone. It can be highly polished and is used for vases, seals, and at one time for...

, Ceres
CERES
CERES may refer to:* California Environmental Resources Evaluation System * Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies of the University of Toronto...

 on green jasper
Jasper
Jasper, a form of chalcedony, is an opaque, impure variety of silica, usually red, yellow, brown or green in color; and rarely blue. This mineral breaks with a smooth surface, and is used for ornamentation or as a gemstone. It can be highly polished and is used for vases, seals, and at one time for...

 and Bacchus
Bacchus
Bacchus is the Roman name for Dionysus, the god of wine and intoxication.Bacchus can also refer to:* Temple of Bacchus, a Roman temple at a large classical antiquity complex in Baalbek, Lebanon...

 on amethyst
Amethyst
Amethyst is a violet variety of quartz often used in jewelry. The name comes from the Ancient Greek ἀ a- and μέθυστος methustos , a reference to the belief that the stone protected its owner from drunkenness; the ancient Greeks and Romans wore amethyst and made drinking vessels of it in the belief...

. Amulets are worn to imbue the wearer with the associated powers of the gods rather than for any reasons of piety. The intrinsic power of the amulet is also evident from others bearing inscriptions, such as VTEREFELIX (UTERE FELIX) or "good luck to the user." Amulet boxes could also be used, such as the example from part of the Thetford treasure
Thetford treasure
The Thetford Hoard is a hoard of Romano-British metalwork found at Gallows Hill, near Thetford in Norfolk, England, in November 1979, and now in the British Museum...

, Norfolk, UK, where a gold box intended for suspension around the neck was found to contain sulphur for its apotropaic qualities.

Amulets and talismans in folklore

Amulets and talismans vary considerably according to their time and place of origin. In many societies, religious objects serve as amulets, e.g. deriving from the ancient Celts, the clover
Clover
Clover , or trefoil, is a genus of about 300 species of plants in the leguminous pea family Fabaceae. The genus has a cosmopolitan distribution; the highest diversity is found in the temperate Northern Hemisphere, but many species also occur in South America and Africa, including at high altitudes...

, if it has four leaves, symbolizes good luck (not the Irish shamrock
Shamrock
The shamrock is a three-leafed old white clover. It is known as a symbol of Ireland. The name shamrock is derived from Irish , which is the diminutive version of the Irish word for clover ....

, which symbolizes the Christian Trinity
Trinity
The Christian doctrine of the Trinity defines God as three divine persons : the Father, the Son , and the Holy Spirit. The three persons are distinct yet coexist in unity, and are co-equal, co-eternal and consubstantial . Put another way, the three persons of the Trinity are of one being...

).

In Bolivia
Bolivia
Bolivia officially known as Plurinational State of Bolivia , is a landlocked country in central South America. It is the poorest country in South America...

 and Argentina
Argentina
Argentina , officially the Argentine Republic , is the second largest country in South America by land area, after Brazil. It is constituted as a federation of 23 provinces and an autonomous city, Buenos Aires...

, the god Ekeko
Ekeko
The Ekeko is the Tiwanakan god of abundance and prosperity in the mythology and folklore of the people from the Andean Altiplano. The current representation corresponds to a reinterpretation made by the artisan Isidro Choquehuanca as a gift for an employee of the Governor and Commanding Officer of...

 furnishes a standard amulet, to whom one should offer at least one banknote or a cigarette
Cigarette
A cigarette is a small roll of finely cut tobacco leaves wrapped in a cylinder of thin paper for smoking. The cigarette is ignited at one end and allowed to smoulder; its smoke is inhaled from the other end, which is held in or to the mouth and in some cases a cigarette holder may be used as well...

 to obtain fortune and welfare. In certain areas of India, Nepal and Sri Lanka, it is traditionally believed that the Jackal's Horn
Jackal's Horn
The Jackal's Horn is a boney cone-shaped excrescence which can occasionally grow on the skulls of golden jackals. It is associated with magical powers in south-eastern Asia. This horn usually measures half an inch in length, and is concealed by fur...

 can grant wishes and reappear to its owner at its own accord when lost. Some Sinhalese believe that the horn can grant the holder invulnerability in any lawsuit
Lawsuit
A lawsuit or "suit in law" is a civil action brought in a court of law in which a plaintiff, a party who claims to have incurred loss as a result of a defendant's actions, demands a legal or equitable remedy. The defendant is required to respond to the plaintiff's complaint...

.

See also

  • Apotropaism
  • Curse tablet
    Curse tablet
    A curse tablet or binding spell is a type of curse found throughout the Graeco-Roman world, in which someone would ask the gods to do harm to others.-Description:...

  • Dzi bead
    Dzi bead
    Dzi bead is a bead stone of mysterious origin worn as part of a necklace and sometimes as a bracelet. In several Asian cultures, including that of Tibet, the bead is considered to provide positive spiritual benefit...

  • Evil eye
    Evil eye
    The evil eye is a look that is believed by many cultures to be able to cause injury or bad luck for the person at whom it is directed for reasons of envy or dislike...

  • Folk religion
    Folk religion
    Folk religion consists of ethnic or regional religious customs under the umbrella of an organized religion, but outside of official doctrine and practices...

  • Hamsa
    Hamsa
    Hamsa or Khamsa can refer to:*Arabic  "five, quintet"** Ḫamsa, a Near Eastern symbol often used as a protective amulet** a commonly used alternative name for the Panj Ganj or Quinary, ie quintet of Nizami's first five great epics*Sanskrit ...

  • Heart of Kandrakar
    Heart of Kandrakar
    The Heart of Kandrakar , is a fictional magical pendant from the Italian W.I.T.C.H. comic book and the French animated series of the same name...

  • Lucky charm
    Lucky charm
    Lucky Charms is a breakfast cereal.Lucky charms are items within cultures that are believed to bring luck and may refer to:- Lucky Charms in Western Culture :*Four-leaf clover, an uncommon variation of the common, three-leaved clover...

  • Nazar
    Nazar (amulet)
    A nazar is an eye-shaped amulet believed to protect against the evil eye . In Central Asia, during the ages of Tengrism, people held similar superstitions like horseshoes, garlic, wolf's tooth, dried thorn, lead, stones; but the crystal blue eye has always been the most popular one.It is common in...

  • Painted pebbles
    Painted pebbles
    Painted pebbles are a class of Pictish artifact unique to northern Scotland in the first millennium AD.- Appearance :They are small rounded beach pebbles made of quartzite, which have been painted with simple designs in a dye which is now dark brown in colour. The size varies from 18 mm by...

  • Sachet
    Sachet (scented bag)
    A sachet is a small cloth scented bag filled with herbs, potpourri, or aromatic ingredients.It is also defined as a small soft bag containing perfumed or sweet-smelling items also referred to as an ascent bag, scent bag, sweet bag, sachet bag, sachet de senteurs, spiced sachet, potpourri sachet,...

  • Ta'wiz
    Ta'wiz
    The Ta'wiz or Tawiz is a locket usually containing verses from the Quran or other Islamic prayers and symbols. As a general rule it is worn with the belief that it will repel any evil intended for the wearer and will also bring him luck. As such it is intended to be an amulet. The word Ta'wiz is...

  • Thokcha
    Thokcha
    'Thokcha' "sky-iron" are tektites and meteorites which are often high in iron content, refer Iron meteorite. The usage of meteoric iron is common in the history of ferrous metallurgy. Historically, thokchas were held in esteem for sacred metallurgical fabrication of weapons, musical instruments...

  • Touch pieces
    Touch pieces
    A touch piece is a coin or medal attached to attracted superstitious beliefs, such as those with "holes" in them or those with particular designs...

  • Uncial 0152
    Uncial 0152
    Uncial 0152 , is a Greek talisman manuscript of the New Testament. It contains a small fragment of the Gospel of Matthew.- Description :...

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