Symbols of good luck are found in cultures around the world. Costume jewelry designers, taking their cues from these superstitions, feature good luck symbols in many of their designs. Looking through my photo archives, I found examples of many of the more common motifs.
To be lucky, a horseshoe can point up or down. An upwards pointing horseshoe collects good luck; a downwards pointing horseshoe showers you with luck. Either way, it's a popular good luck symbol. The symbolism dates to the 10th century and the legend of Saint Dunstan who trapped the devil with a horseshoe. OK, I buy that.
4-LEAF CLOVERS and SHAMROCKS
The four-leaf clover is especially popular in Western cultures as a symbol of good luck, probably due to its association with St. Patrick's Day. The shamrock, or three-leaf clover isn't considered lucky, but both three and four leaf clovers are seen in jewelry design.
Ladybugs are good luck symbols with a number of virtues. In general, they will free you of everyday worries; and, if a ladybug lands on you, you will be free of disease. There is even a superstition that if a ladybug lands on a bride, she will know how many children she will have based on the number of spots on the insect.
ACORNSAccording to Norse legend, acorns on the windowsill will protect your house from lightning. This dates back to the legend of Thor who created thunder and lightning with his hammer and anvil.
This good luck symbol dates to the Old Testament. God created a rainbow after the flood as a sign that the earth would never be destroyed by flood again. And the rest, as they say, is history - (or is it superstition?)
Dating to ancient Egypt, the scarab is a symbol of good luck and a protector from evil.
Good luck symbols for sailors who knew that a dolphin sighting meant land was nearby.
Symbols of good luck in Europe and Asia. A pig in clover symbolizes wealth.
TURTLES and TORTOISES
While researching this article, I learned that turtles and tortoises are symbols of good luck in Feng-Shui. Who knew?
An elephant, especially with its trunk pointing up is another popular symbol of good luck. If it faces the door, good luck will enter the home.
Legend has it that a chimney sweep saved England's King George when the horse he was riding reared. Hence, the chimney sweep is a symbol of good luck.
The phrase "lucky break" comes from the tradition of breaking a wishbone.
The swastika is an equilateral cross with legs bent at 90 degrees. The design is an ancient one and predates Nazi Germany by centuries. Antique jewelry is available with this good luck symbol but due to the transformation of the symbol's meaning in the 20th century, pieces bearing a swastika are often mistaken for or improperly labeled as Nazi jewelry.
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