First edition, first printing. Publisher's original maroon cloth with gilt illustrations to the upper board and spine and titles in gilt to the spine. Page edges untrimmed. Illustrated with a tissue-guarded frontispiece, two lithographic plates (one tinted, one folding) and 185 black and white in-text figures. A very good copy, the binding firm with a touch of fading to the spine and to the top edges of the boards, a few minor marks and a 2.5cm split to the cloth at the head of the lower joint. The contents with one blank front endpaper excised, a previous owner's ink name to the half title, tanning to the endpapers and some occasional light scattered foxing to a handful of page edges are otherwise in very good order.
A scarce work by the English philologist, antiquary and folklorist, exploring the concept and history of the 'evil eye' - a curse believed to be cast by a malevolent glare, usually whilst the victim is unaware. One of the most pervasive and powerful folk beliefs in the Indo-European and Semitic world, the present work documents both its use and the many forms of protection (including amulets, gestures and incantations), that people have devised to keep its effects at bay.
Stock code: 20096
London: John Murray.