Traditional Superstitions

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Traditional Superstitions
Traditional Superstitions

Evel Eye: The belief in the Evil Eye is an ancient superstition that you will meet in many cultures around the Mediterranean sea, Arabia, Turkey, Greece and all the way to India. In Greece these belief is dating back to at least the 6th century BC. In the Greco-Roman period a scientific explanation of the evil eye was common. Amongst Greek superstitions, the Evil Eye is one of the oldest and widely believed myths. The Evil Eye is known widely throughout Greece and the Greek Islands. The Greek Orthodox Church also believes in the evil eye, and they refer to it as "Vaskania".

In Greek history, Evil Eye charms can be traced to Ancient Greece. Paintings found on Greek triremes over two thousand years old, feature an Eye painted at the front of the trireme in an attempt to ward off the Evil Eye and protect the trireme while at sea.

The Evil Eye ( Lucky Eye ) belief is that a person can harm you, your children, your livestock, or your fruit trees, by “looking at them” with envy and praising them. In Greece, the most common form of these talismans is the blue glass Eye charm, which mirrors back the blue of the Evil Eye and thus confounds it.

Greeks hang little blue eyes around their necks and wrists. You can get these in almost any jewelry or souvenir shop. Blue stones are also good, since the colour blue is considered a protective colour. The reason the color blue and the painted eye are used is that both are thought to ward off the evil of the eye. 

In Greece, wherever you look, you'll meet plenty of eyes looking at you. Today, it its impossible walk through a Greek jewelry or gift store without encountering blue glass Evil Eyes in many sizes and shapes.

Garlic: Garlic is another way to ward off the evil eye, and one can sometimes see it hanging in a corner of some houses. Garlic, as well as onion, is also considered of having a great healing power by many Greeks. If someone is feeling ill, they will advice him to eat garlic.Bread: In villages, bread is considered as a gift of God; old women bless the bread and make the sign of the cross with a knife before slicing it.The expression Piase kokkino: When 2 people say the same thing together they immediately say “piase kokkino” which means red touch, one another and both have to touch any red item they can find around him / her. This happens because Greeks believe that saying the same thing is an omen and that the 2 persons will get into a fight or an argument if they don’t touch a red thing.Spiting: Some Greeks believe that spitting chases the devil and the misfortune away. That is why when someone talk about bad news (deaths, accidents, diseases etc…) the others slightly spit three times saying “ftou”. Another example is that someone that compliments a baby, a child or even an adult for its beauty, has also to spit 3 times on the complimented person.Knives: Greeks never hand knives to someone who asks for it for they consider that if they do that they will have a fight or argument with the person. Therefore they set it down on the table or somewhere and let the other person take it her / him hand.