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Amulet brooch in the shape of a black cat, England, 1914-1918

Amulet brooch in the shape of a black cat, England, 1914-1918

Credits: Science Museum

This black cat amulet was said to have been carried for protection and good luck by a British soldier fighting during the First World War. The amulet was worn by a man of the Royal West Surrey Regiment of the British Army. Black cats are considered lucky in England but unlucky elsewhere in Europe. Amulets of all shapes and forms are still considered by some people to provide good luck and protection against illness and danger. The amulet was part of the collection of Edward Lovett (1852-1933), a researcher and collector of folk traditions, and was bought by Henry Wellcome in 1930. It is shown here with two other First World War amulets (A79870 and A79904).

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    Glossary: amulet

    Small object or piece of jewellery worn as a protecting charm to ward off ill health and bad luck.