Amuletic Necklace (Kamea)

Unknown Maker

The use of amulets is widespread in Jewish, Christian and Muslim popular belief. Amulets may be made of metal, wood, stone or parchment/paper. They are meant to be protective against illness or death, childlessness, poverty, and unhappiness, and to bring success or good fortune, to ensure safe journeys and so forth. The choice of the wording depends of the protective purpose. The effectiveness of an amulet is a question discussed in the Talmud: “Our teachers set forth: What is an effective amulet? Any which has healed twice or thrice – whether an amulet of script or an amulet of roots, whether for a person mortally ill or for a person not mortally ill” (bT, Schabbat 61a).

Name: Amuletic Necklace (Kamea)
Artist: Unknown Maker
Origin: North Africa, 19th Century
Medium: Coral, Silver
Dimensions: 12 x 26 in.
Credit: Gift of Georgette Grosz Spertus from the Maurice Spertus Collection
Catalog Number: 69.1.211