Objects, or charms, believed to have magic* power to bring their wearers good fortune or protect him from harm. Their use has been almost universal among pagans at all times. Massive pagan influx brought them into the 4th-c. ch. Though they were denounced (e.g., by J. Chrysostom,* Homily IV on 1 Co, section 11, Homily III on 1 Thess, on chap. 3; Homily VIII on Cl, on 3:15; Canon 36 of the Syn. of Laodicea*), their use survived under Christian coloring. Relics* enclosed in cases, called phylacteries, were worn as potent protectors; holy* water, blessed salt,* consecrated wafers (see Altar Bread), etc. were carried on the person. Contact with the E during the Crusades* multiplied the talismans and charms. See also Africa, A 3; Talisman.
Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
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