|Amulet of Silver, Bone and Shell|
The Victoria & Albert Museum
In the days when the same person cut your hair, pulled your teeth and performed surgery, it was pretty much a given that you’d want something on your person to protect you from dangerous illness. Anything could be a death sentence before modern medicine. Fevers, splinters, toothaches, and, especially childbirth, all could mean an early end to a life.
So, amulets were created by superstitious persons to protect them from…well, everything, but especially the all-encompassing, “evil eye.” Amulets were often made from organic materials which were thought to have protective powers, stones, jet or horn. Now, we should point out that the Catholic and Anglican churches frowned on such practices. Still, did you think that they’d approve? Come on.