15 Good Luck Charms From Across The World Which Have Very Interesting History Behind Them

Updated on 22 Mar, 2018 at 10:58 pm


People from all across the globe are a bunch of superstitious nerds, who use different good luck charms to cater their beliefs. The use of good luck charms are common in almost all cultures, but each culture has their own objects to fulfil their faith and selection. Obviously, people live in different countries around the world, and therefore believing in each other’s symbols of good charms, may not look too familiar.



While some of these charms are used commonly, there are many which remain unique. In different countries, various types of symbols, talismans, charms, and amulets are symbols for good luck and prosperity, but one thing remains intact – there’s always some connection with their history!

Let’s bring to you a fascinating collection of 15 good luck symbols from across the globe, with a valid explanation of why they’re considered lucky!


1. Carp sales – Poland

In several European countries, carp is served as the main course of most Christmas Eve dinners and is considered traditional. Once the meal is over, people retrieve the carp scales and sometimes put them in their wallets until the following Christmas Eve for good luck. This tradition dates largely from the post-war communist era where more exotic and tastier fish were short in supply, and refrigerators were almost unknown.



2. Dala Horses – Sweden

These horses are considered the ‘national icon’ of Sweden. These adorable Swedish souvenirs originated from the Dalarna region in Sweden and represent strength, wisdom, faithfulness, and dignity. Although the originals are hand carved and painted in Dalarna, you can see them easily in shops all over Stockholm.



3. Red bats – China

Red bats are thought to ward off evil, so they’re worn as lucky charms. According to Chinese culture and belief, when five bats get grouped together, they form an auspicious meaning – they form five good fortunes of health, longevity, love, wealth, and virtue.



4. Dolphins – Rome

Dolphins are considered lucky in many different cultures, including the cultures of Greece, Egypt, and Rome. Dolphins were often seen as a sign of protection in the ancient times, when sailors used to spend months at the sea. The sailors believed that the sight of dolphins would mean that there’s land nearby. Dolphins have been a symbol of protection, good luck and good omen since centuries.



5. Elephants – India

Elephants represent power, stability, and wisdom in many countries — especially India. This majestic animal is associated with the Indian deity, Lord Ganesha, which has the head of an elephant. This animal which is also the spirit animal of many, is used to symbolise power, wisdom, strength, protection of the home, fertility, and general goodness. Many believe that their trunks facing upwards symbolise a rise in prosperity and good luck.



6. Figa charm – Brazil

Well, this one is for keeps! Figa charms repel bad energy and bring good fortune. It’s thought that the charms store all the luck you haven’t used yet. Worn throughout Brazil and Peru, these charms are considered as a symbol of protection against the evil eye. But be careful not to break or lose it as that will cut off your supply of luck!



7. Dream catcher – Native America

If you’re nocturnal, this one is for you. When hung over a person’s bed, a dream catcher is thought to screen the dreams as the flow by, letting only the good ones through. This sounds too good to be true, but it must be helping some people have ‘good dreams’ at least!



8. Hamsa – Israel and Arab countries

This hand-shaped charm can often be seen decorating family homes, public spaces, or offices. They ward off the evil eye. The symbol is rooted in ancient Mesopotamian religions. It’s also known as the Khamsa, the Humes hand, the Hand of Fatima and the Hand of Miriam. This good luck charm is a popular symbol within the Islamic and Jewish faiths.



9. Scarab beetle – Egypt

Considered as a symbol of reincarnation in Egypt, the scarab is associated with the rising of the sun and continual birth and rebirth in Egypt. Egyptians have used symbols in their art and religion for centuries and this beetle is found all over ancient Egypt. It symbolises restoration of life and is a popular design for good luck charms, represents new creation and obviously protects against all evils.



10. Maneki Neko –  Japan

These lucky cat figures are very commonly found at business entrances, restaurants, and homes of Japanese people, who think it brings good luck to them. They vary in size and design. These fortune cats have a reason behind waving their hands at you – the Japanese beckoning gesture is made by holding up the hand, palm down, and repeatedly folding the fingers down and back, thus the cat’s appearance.



11. Nazar – Turkey

“If looks could kill”, this one would surely do the job well! Like the Hamsa, the Nazar is thought to protect one from the evil eye. This eye-shaped amulet is believed to ward off any forms of evilness and is now commonly sold in the streets of India and Pakistan as well. It’s typically handmade with blue, white, light blue, and black glass. They are usually hung at the entrances of homes or wherever you want and are also worn as a charming accessory in the form of bracelets and necklaces.



12. Tumi – Peru

In Peru, it’s considered good luck to hang a tumi on the wall. The ceremonial knife — usually made of bronze, gold, silver, or copper — was formerly used in ritual ceremonies. It is distinctly characterised by a semi-circular blade and often considered as a sacrificial ceremonial axe in the Peruvian culture.



13. Pigs – Germany

This is not as stinky as it seems. During the middle ages, possessing pigs was considered as a sign of being wealthy and living a prosperous life for the Germans! Owning pigs indicated that their owners would never go hungry and are living a luxurious life indeed.



14. Worry dolls – Guatemala

Can’t sleep? Don’t fret – these dolls are there for your rescue! According to folklore, people who cannot fall asleep, reveal their worries to the dolls, which is then believed to take over their concerns and allows them to sleep. This might sound totally bizarre, but if it makes them swallow their worries, why not!



15. Acorns – England

Acorns have long been associated as symbol of youth, spiritual growth, and prosperity. The acorn has been sacred and considered lucky in numerous cultures, specially been carried by the English during the Norman Conquest.



It’s interesting to note the above good luck charms, but if you’d like to know about your favourite country, click the play button:



Good luck with your beliefs and charm! Have you got any lucky charm which has worked for you? Tell us in the comments.


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