- The infamous Hope Diamond is likely the most noted example of crystal-like curses. The large, blue diamond when it was stolen from a sacred idol in India, for which holding a curse of misfortune and death to anyone other than the prescribed guardians, who touched it, let alone anyone who would steal it. Its perfect quality, size and its rare color make it unique and sought-after, though it is also known for its sad and deadly history. Once owned by King Louis XIV, and later stolen during the French Revolution, it is remembered for causing tragedy for its owners throughout its freedom among the rich and powerful. Finally donated to the Smithsonian Institution, its days of causing misfortune are almost gone, besides retaining powerful feelings of avarice and fear to those who behold it, its days of killing appear to be over. And, though the Hope diamond is truly unique, the Florentine Diamond is just as mysterious, and also holds a heavy history of doom and gloom.
- The famous ‘Crying Boy’ paintings, notably those by the Spanish artist Giovanni Bragolin, also hold on to legends as curses and hauntings. As far back as the 1950s these mournful images of crying children have had many legends attached to them, even so far as to actually weep, apparently causing tears to drip from the canvas. In addition to these rumors, these paintings have been blamed for various misfortunes to the owners, including house fires and unexpected deaths. In the 1980s, the British tabloid The Sun published a story about a Yorkshire Fire Brigade officer who unearthed one such painting from a burnt-out dwelling, completely undamaged while the rest of the home was in ruins. Since and before that, other copies had been reported found in the ruins of burned houses throughout the world. Indeed, there are many other examples of so-called cursed paintings; from Elvis paintings, to old hags, the idea of there being a curse attached to them appears to be based on witness accounts of strange events, and through a lexicon of misfortunate happenings. Whether or not such issues are attributed to a ‘magick’ curse, or by the aforementioned memory retaining affects of crystalline materials have yet to be discovered and empirically proven.
- Though there are many different objects have been considered haunted or cursed throughout history, few are said to bring on death to its owners as the Women from Lemb statue. This strange little artifact has done so much damage that it is commonly referred to as the ‘Goddess of Death,’ and remains under glass in a private section of a Scottish museum. Discovered in 1878 in Eastern Europe, in the village of Lemb, Cyprus, it has been dated to about 3500 B.C. and is believed to represent a goddess of that time by noted historians, but its exact placement in the pantheon of gods and goddesses remains a mystery. The statue is carved from pure limestone, and appears to have been done in a manner similar to fertility idols of the ancients.
- The Basano Vase ; made of carved silver during the latter half of the 15th century, is the object of Italian folklore that continues to frighten and inspire. Its history is foggy at best, but is believed to have been made as a wedding gift for a young woman in a northern village near Napoli. She is said to have either died or was murdered on her wedding night, clutching on the vase as she passed away. It was then passed around to family member to family member, causing death in one form or another until it was boxed and hidden away from sight. Some have claimed that it was hidden away by a priest; others say it simply disappeared, while others claim it was buried at an unknown time, only to be re-discovered in 1988. Legend tells us that when the vase was found, a piece of parchment paper with the message: “Beware…This vase brings death” was discovered inside of it. The creepy warning was discarded, and the vase was quickly auctioned off for 4 million Lira (about 2,250 U.S. dollars) to a local pharmacist. Three months later, he was dead. His family quickly sold it to a prominent surgeon who didn’t believe in such things as curses, and died two months later at the ripe old age of 37.
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