Back to Home Page or Contents Page or Divination or Index

Saphy (or Grigris)


These are charms or amulets that were worn by Africans for protection against thunderbolts and disease, to acquire wives, and to advert all sorts of disasters. The term is perhaps derived from the Arabic safi ("pure, select, excellent").

The charms were composed of slips of paper containing passages from the Koran, and sometimes intermixed with Kabbalistic symbols. They were placed in silver tubes or bags and worn next to the skin, often attached to a dress or other articles of clothing. They also were popular with both sexes regardless of the person's religion. A.G.H.


Source: 9, 1451.

Home    Alchemy    Ancient Beliefs    Buddhism    Christianity    Demonology    Divination    Goddess and witchcraft    Great Mysteries    Hinduism    Islam     Judaism    Magic    Neo-paganism    Other    Paranormal    Past and present Beliefs    People    Places    Religions and sects    Rituals and texts    Shamanism    Stones    Theosophy African Mythology    Asian Mythology    Buddha Mythology    Egyptian Mythology    Greco-Roman Mythology    Greek Mythology    Hindu Mythology    Native American    Persian Mythology    Roman Mythology    South American Mythology