Vintage Hamsa Hand Judaism Jewish Camel Necklace Israel Judah Yiddish Rare For Sale
Vintage Hamsa Hand Judaism Jewish Hamesh Camel Necklace Israel Judah Yiddish RARE
A wonderful necklace with the Hamsa on one side and a Camel on the other. It has an ornate backing between the sides. The pendant measures aprox 2” x 2.5”. The chain is aprox 20” long.
This is a rare find and in beautiful condition! I know the new owner will be pleased with it.
In the wake of the renewed interest in Mizrahi folklore and customs in Israel, use of the hamsa has become trendy. It has been described as "an icon of Israeliness and secularity," although its symbolism is by no means all pervading or universal. As a 'good luck' charm, it appears on necklaces, keychains, postcards, telephone and lottery cards, and in advertisements.
The name “hamsa” comes from the Hebrew word “hamesh,” which means five. “Hamsa” refers to the fact that there are five fingers on the talisman, though some also believe it represents the five books of the Torah.
The symbol predates Christianity and Islam. Levantine Christians call it the hand of Mary, for the Virgin Mary. Jews refer to it as the Hand of Miriam in remembrance of the biblical Miriam, sister of Moses and Aaron.
Early use of the hamsa has been traced to ancient Mesopotamia (modern day Iraq). A universal sign of protection, the image of the open right hand is seen in Mesopotamian artifacts in the amulets of the Qāt Ištar and the Qāt Inana and in the Buddha's gesture (mudrā) of teaching and protection.
Other symbols of divine protection based around the hand include the Hand-of-Venus (or Aphrodite) and the Hand-of-Mary that was used to protect women from the evil eye, boost fertility and lactation, promote healthy pregnancies, and strengthen the weak.
One theory postulates a connection between the khamsa and the Mano Pantea (or Hand-of-the-All-Goddess), an amulet known to ancient Egyptians as the Two Fingers. In this amulet, the Two Fingers represent Isis and Osiris and the thumb, their child Horus and it was used to invoke the protective spirits of parents over their child.
Another theory traces the origins of the hamsa to Carthage (Phoenicia) where the hand (or in some cases vulva) of the supreme deity Tanit was used to ward off the evil eye.
Sources indicate that it is known to Europeans as the "hand of Fatima" or "hands of Fatima”.
The hamsa's path into Jewish culture, and its popularity particularly in Sephardic and Mizrahi Jewish communities, can be traced through its use in Islam.
This "favorite Muslim talisman" became a part of Jewish tradition in North African and Middle Eastern Muslim countries. The symbol of the hand appears in Kabbalistic manuscripts and amulets, doubling as the Hebrew letter "shin," the first letter of "Shaddai," one of the names referring to God.
The khamsa holds recognition as a bearer of good fortune among Christians in the region as well. Levantine Christians call it the hand of Mary (Arabic: Kef Miryam, or the "Virgin Mary's Hand").
The Hand (Khamsa), particularly the open right hand, is a sign of protection that also represents blessings, power, and strength, and is seen as potent in deflecting the evil eye.
Used to protect against evil eye, a malicious stare believed to be able to cause illness, death, or just general unluckiness, hamsas often contain an eye symbol.
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