A visitor to Turkey will notice the evil eye all around the country and in many forms.   At the entrances to all businesses and homes, on car mirrors, pinned to the backs of clothes on babies and small children, on bracelets, necklaces, key chains, scarves, and even on handbags.  Turkish evil eyes are therefore a popular choice when buying souvenirs.  However, not many people know the history behind them.

Throughout history the eye, has been said to be a symbol capable of defying evil. This concept prevails in many religions and cultures alike.  From Turkey to India, from Africa across to the Arabian Peninsula, and from Europe to South America many cultures believe this.  

It received its shape and form in Anatolia through over 3000 years of  craftsmanship. The evil eye bead was shaped by a glass master who aimed to combine the power of the eye and fire. Protection from evil eyes, jealous friends, and strangers is given to the user of this talisman. 

These evil eye beads are known as Nazar Boncuk in the Turkish language.

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One of our Master Jewelers has been specializing in creating Murano glass jewelry for over 15 years.  Using genuine Venetian glass, our artisan creates bracelets, rings, pendants, and earrings to ward off the “evil eye” from the wearer.  In addition, evil eye jewelry gives happiness to the friends and loved ones of the wearer.  Blue glass is the most commonly used glass in Turkey because it is the color of water, something that is precious and valuable in these lands and associated with growth and prosperity.  It is believed that both conscious and unconscious negative intentions can be warded off by wearing the evil eye bracelet.

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Turkish people, similar to people of many other cultures, also believe that envy can cause harm which when directed towards the bracelet, will cause the bracelet to break. By wearing the evil eye bracelet, the person is also protected from disease, accidents, misfortune or poverty.  Even some of the world’s most famous celebrities are well known to subscribe to these good luck charms. Cameron Diaz, Brad Pitt, Sharon Stone, Richard Gere, Madonna, Britney Spears, Demi Moore, and Kim Kardashian have all been photographed wearing them… It’s meant to ward off the “evil eye” from others who wish to stop their success.

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Whether you believe in the superstition or not, a piece of jewelry with the evil eye is a great cultural piece to have as part of your collection. 

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Maureen Gumus is a writer, editor, jewelry enthusiast, and world traveler.Originally from the U.S., Maureen is proud to call Istanbul her home - one that she shares with her master jeweler husband, Nurhan, and their cat, Mink.

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