Page 124

cultural and material collaborations.

Dionysiac-procession in the Hellenistic Era

SPELL, THE EVIL EYE The spell or the evil eye is the negative energy that can affect people, animals and objects. Democritus, Plutarch and Aristotle tried to explain this widespread phenomenon. Demosthenes says that the spell causes a failure of effort and suffering. The evil eye can affect people in health, bring bad luck, bad harvests, poor outcomes in somebody’s struggles, danger to dear persons and to domestic animals, destruction of objects. Most vulnerable were the children, and the frail and weak adults. So there were various means to counteract the spell these were vascano (spell), phylakteria, periapta (amulets), telesmata (talismans). The phylakteria was symbolic gestures such as spitting or using semi-precious stones like malachite as a talisman for the children. The person casting the spell is a malicious, brutal, envious and has spiritual powers. Some facial features are considered more powerfull into casting the spell than others. These are intense green eyes, small eyes and close eyebrows. Plutarch mentions the aftovaskania (casting the spell to one’s self). Expressions like "don’t be a big mouth", "touch on wood", "spit in your bosom", “spit three times”, are found in Plato, Aristotle and Theocritus. For protection from the evil eye they used to hang garlic on the door of the house or the shop. Jewelry were hang as amulets around the neck, chest, wrists and ankles, as well as white and red threads that deterred from evil. They used other symbols such as the head of Medusa that its ugliness could


Final study of CulMe-WeOnCT project