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by cat yronwode

From: catherine yronwode 
Newsgroups: alt.magick,alt.occult.methods
Subject: Re: Horseshoes and Horse Brasses
Date: Sun, 02 Sep 2001 22:17:22 GMT

The Tao wrote:

[British and Irish peole usually hang their lucky horseshoes with 
the open end at the top, but...]

> Actually, there is one instance in Britain and Ireland where a horse-
> shoe is hung downward - over the door to a blacksmith's forge, where 
> they are made. I don't know why blacksmiths are different in this way.

Thanks for that information! It reminds me that the
otherwise fairly strict directionality of horseshoes is not
universal in Great Briatain. It brings to mind the fact that
among those antique British horse brasess in my collection
in which the central figures are set within a horseshoe
rather than a circluar design, the horseshoes all face
downward and the square fitting for the leather harness
strap is at the top, above the shoe.

Horse brasses, for those unfamiliar with them, are
decorative brass plaque amulets, about 4 inches in diameter,
which were hung on the harnesses of dray horses to protect
them from the evil eye or "overlooking." They often feature
horses or horse-heads within horseshoes as the motif, but
also may contain regional specialities, such as grouse, a
local church, or even an image of a famous black-smithy.  

cat yronwode 

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