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Greek vases and Peruvian bottles, Chinese bronzes and African masks, Tel Brak idols and Egyptian tomb paintings—artifacts ancient and modern reveal man’s universal fascination with the eye and his awe before its mysterious powers. In this wide-ranging and richly illustrated essay Albert M. Potts considers the special properties the human mind has ascribed to the eye over the millenia and seeks out its peculiar significance as symbol.
Amulets against the Evil Eye persist today in nearly every part of the world. Almost as pervasive is the conception of the Good Eye, itself used as a protective amulet. The Eye of Horus, for example, was one of the holiest symbols of the ancient Egyptian religion, and its descendants can still be found in the Mediterranean basin. Using artifacts and texts, the folklore of our own times, and aspects of the unconscious revealed by Jungian psychology, Potts reveals the diverse forms and meanings of this powerful symbol.
Albert M. Potts is both a biochemist and a physician. He is professor of ophthalmology in the University of Louisville School of Medicine.
The University Press of Kentucky
Place of Publication
Folklore, Eyes in folklore, Evil Eye, Good Eye
Potts, Albert M., "The World's Eye" (1982). Folklore. Book 11.