Il curniciello. The Neapolitan Amulet.

In Napoli you will see a lot of what look like red chili peppers. Each is actually a horn, corno in italian, designed to ward off the Evil Eye and bring good luck. The origins of this amulet are lost in the mists of time: since ancient times, the horn was a symbol of power and fertility. But to be really magic and keep spirits away, the neapolitan curniciello has to be realized according to a few but necessary rules. First of all, it must be red, the traditional color of fortune, and made of coral wish is a precious material having special powers to chase away evil. It has to be crooked and pointed. Last but fundamental rule is that the horn must not be bought, but received as a present in order to truly bring good luck.