Lot 5
  • 5

Two Italian silver amulets, late 19th/early 20th century

Estimate
1,000 - 1,500 USD
Sold
3,438 USD
bidding is closed

Description

  • silver
the first, the Hebrew-inscribed panel topped by a pair of dolphins above interlace scrolls; the second in 17th century style, rectangular panel engraved with Hebrew inscription and foliage, flanked by two columns, all below crown.

Exhibited

New York, Hebrew Union College, The Collector's Room: Selections from the Michael and Judy Steinhardt Collection, 1993, nos. 17 and 20

Catalogue Note

The inscription of the first reads: "Let no evil befall you (Psalm 91:10)," the second is inscribed at the top: "Crown of Torah" and at the center: "Answer me God who answers."

An amulet is a magical charm believed to have the power to protect from harm the one who possesses it or wears it.  Amulets were typically hung in the room of a woman in childbirth or affixed to the crib of a newborn child.  The belief in amulets persisted widely among Jews until as late as the nineteenth century, when, under the influence of the Haskalah (Enlightenment) and religious reform movements, their use was severely curtailed.  Nevertheless, in some circles, the folk tradition of wearing amuletic devices persists.

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