By Sir E. A. Wallis Budge
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Additional info for Amulets and Talismans
No part of a man or a pig is used in " medicine " for fetish purposes. The substance possessing the magical powers may be laid upon objects of dress, or placed in a purse or bag, or laid up for safety in the figure of a man or animal ; and it is believed that the " medicine " administered will be more efficacious if it also contains the personal strength of the medicine man himself. 18 AMULETS AND TALISMANS The objects with which the medicine man sur rounds himself or hangs upon his person are very numerous, and among them may be mentioned : Mussel-shells, talons o f birds and claws of animals, teeth, horns, feathers, locks or tufts of hair, strips of leather, cords, string, rags, bags, pieces of earth, balls of resin, leaves, fruits, plates, dishes, bottles, pots, chains, baskets, stumps of wood, rolls of cloth, bits of sacking, boxes, images made of wood, metal, bones, ivory, figures of apes, leopards, serpents, crocodiles, hippopotami, elephants, men, etc.
It may be foolish or superstitious to wear and treasure inanimate objects, even thought they be made of gold or silver or plati num or precious stones. The wearers gain from them feelings of comfort and protection, and they often represent the affection and love of friends. And beautiful amulets evoke the admiration of their wearers and their friends, and frequently satisfy the lust of the eye for beauty. In the Near East amulets are used universally and unashamedly. The old camel postman who guided me from Damascus to Baghdad attributed our safe arrival to the five xxxiv PREFACE blue beads which were fastened on the foreheads of each of his camels.
It was necessary for every amulet to be powerful enough to overcome the influence of the Evil Eye, and every attack of the evil spirits which were regarded as the instigators of every sickness, disease, accident, mis fortune and calamity. 22 AMULETS AND TALISMANS Among GENERAL AMULETS may be included those which were hidden in the walls of houses or under them, and those which were placed at the entrances to the villages, and in certain parts of them. Primitive man j udged the potency of an amulet by results.
Amulets and Talismans by Sir E. A. Wallis Budge