Evil Eye (Mati) And Greek Jewelry
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What Are Evil Eyes?
The evil eye is the name for a sickness transmitted -- usually without intention -- by someone who is envious. It is also called the invidious eye and the envious eye. The evil eye belief is that a person can harm you, your children, your livestock, or your fruit trees, by “looking at them” with envy and praising them. The earliest written references to the ‘evil eye' occur on Sumerian clay tablets dating to the third millennium BC. Agate beads of exceptional quality, worn to protect the wearer from the influence of the evil eye were also discovered in the royal Sumerian graves at Ur.
The most common article of “decoration” (as perceived by a European) in any Turkish house, car, on a person, children or property is the mysterious staring “eye”, set in blue glass called the “Nazar Boncugu” or ‘Eye Bead'. Amulets, which are worn to repel the evil eye are known as a repellent talisman or apotropaic charm. In Greece and Turkey, the most common form of apotropaic charm is the blue glass eye charm, which mirrors back the blue of the evil eye and thus confounds it.
In regions where the Evil Eye belief occurs, the All-Seeing Eye is one of many forms of reflective eye-charm used as apotropaic talisman against this danger. The All-Seeing Eye – a single human eye surrounded by radiating beams of light – appears on the Great Seal of the United States, can be seen on at least one North American Good Luck Coin to “guard” the bearer "from evil”, and is among the many beautiful symbols of Freemasonry, where it represents the Great Architect of the Universe.
From Turkey to Cyprus through the Central Asian Turkic republics to the Uygur Turks of China - and all those beyond and between - the belief in the effects of the “eye” are not only believed but genuinely feared. To show the universality of the belief in the eye, and of ceremonies and rituals used to avert it, we need only to look at just some of the names given to this phenomenon:
Turkish: ‘Nazar’ or ‘Kem Goz’
Roman: Oculus Malus
Italian: Mallochio or La Jettatura
German: Bose Blick
Spanish: Mal Ojo
French: Mauvis Oeil
Indian: Drishtidosham (Third Eye of Budda)
Hebrew: Ayin Horea
Arabic: Ayin Harsha
Egyptian: Eye of Horus
Mexican: Ojo De Venado
English: Evil Eye, All-Seeing Eye
Browse through our huge selection of Evil Eye Jewelry. Mati is the word for "eye" in Greece so this jewelry is sometimes referred to simply as "mati".