Saba uyun-amulet

Lochscheibenamulet in silver from Syria

The saba uyun or 'seven eyes' is a amulet in blue or green faience. These are found in a large part of Southwest Asia: Iran and Iraq, and older examples come from Syria, Palestine and Egypt. They are called saba 'uyun or 'seven eyes' and are regarded as particularly effective against the evil eye. As such, they are not only worn by people but also used to protect house and home.⁠

The origin of the amulet itself is unclear, but may be a derivate of a much older amulet. In ancient Egypt, the Eye of Horus was considered to be a powerful amulet. It was represented on jewelry, even in mass-produced faience jewelry. By the Late Period, when Macedonians, Greeks and Romans ruled the Nile Valley, the shape of the amulet became blurred and deviated somewhat from the original: two or even four Eyes were combined into one roughly round-shaped amulet. Even later, the original shape was altogether forgotten and the amulet now had morphed into a blue or greenish faience disk, perforated with holes. It may just have survived in that shape until the present day.