The Hamsa (خمسة Khamsah, , also romanized khamsa, ⵜⴰⴼⵓⵙⵜ Tafust), is a palm-shaped amulet popular throughout the Middle East and North Africa, and commonly used in jewelry and wall hangings. Depicting the open right hand, an image recognized and used as a sign of protection in many times throughout history, the hamsa is believed by Jews and others to provide defense against the evil eye, (note that the belief that an amulet or any object can provide protection aside from God is completely antithetical to the teachings of mainstream Islam.) It has been theorized that its origins lie in Ancient Egypt or Carthage (modern-day Tunisia) and may have been associated with the goddess Tanit.Khamsah is an Arabic word that means five, but also the five fingers of the hand. It may also be taken as a reference to the primary number itself.The Hamsa is also known as the Hand of Fatima, after the daughter of the Prophet Muhammad.
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