- Hebrew Amulets are part of an ancient tradition. They vary
in shape and content according to their place of origin. .The
purpose of an amulet can be characterized as: Defensive white
magic, with no intent to harm anyone, except perhaps negative
forces that may be at large. It is forbidden to cure with
the words of the Torah whereas to protect against disease is
permissible. Up to two hundred years ago amulets were very common
among all Chassidic Jews, in Europe, North Africa and the Middle
- Kam'ea: The
Hebrew word for amulet. Most amulets are inscribed on
metal, often silver, sometimes tinned copper or brass. Yemenite
Jews made the inscriptions on parchment and wore it in a protective
amulet case. Hand-shaped (Hamsa) amulets are worn by Moroccan
and Tunisian Jews. The large square richly decorated SHEVITI
amulets originated from Persia. Traditionally only blue or
red stones were used: blue to ward of the evil eye and red symbolizing
the life giving power of blood.
Hamsa: The symbol of the hand
was used in North Africa before Jews or Muslims inhabited the
area. Both cultures now use it. The Muslims call it Fatima's
hand. (She was Mohammed's daughter ) The Jews see it as the
Creator's protective hand.
A person who is learned in the Kabbalah. It was the Mecubalim
who set down the guidelines for the inscriptions on the amulets.
The inscriptions are expressions of faith and hope, using
the formulae that have been derived from various books of the
Bible, often the Psalms. It is forbidden to cure with the
words of the Torah. To protect against disease is a different
matter. Rabbi Eliazar of Worms (1176-1238) wrote Sefer Raziel,
a handbook for amulet makers.
- Shem-Shemot: Lit.
a name. It is used as a descriptive term for the holy and
magical names on amulets, in the firm belief in the tremendous
power of the written name of G-d, of angels or Biblical quotations.
The obscurity of the shemot is a result of the limited surface
space available on the amulets and also from a desire to keep
the text of the invocation a secret.
A form of shorthand in which the first letter or the first
two letters of the words of a verse are used to indicate
the whole word.
- Notaricon: A
system of shorthand using one letter of each word.
Lit. substitution. The various codes whereby certain
letters of the alphabet are used to replace others.
with the purchase of each amulet and hamsa.
have two pendant bails; one represents justice, the
other, mercy and are known as Yakhin and Boaz.
These are also the names of the two staves of the Torah
and the names of the two pillars at the entrance of Beit Ha-Michdash
(The Temple in Jerusalem).
The Hebrew Amulets shown here are not reproductions of ancient
Hebrew amulets. The inscriptions used follow the guidelines off
the Mecubalim. (a person who is learned in the mystic doctrine
concerning G-d and the Universe). There is a wide range of these
inscriptions (Shemot) that may be used. All inscriptions are designated
as tested and tried.
All lettering, layout and finish work
are done by Eva (I am not a Mecubal, but the craft person following
guidelines laid down by others).
comes with a translation of the Hebrew and an explanation
of its specific qualities.
All rights reserved. Jewelry Designs & Text: Eva Strauss-Rosen.
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Hamsa Design Studio , Eva Strauss-Rosen © 2012
Questions, Comments and Technical Problems: email@example.com