• top frame 
  • Photographic detail of a pair of babouche with a motif that symbolizes the eye.
  • Magnifying Glass

Detail of babouche featuring a protective symbol
Siroua Mountains, Morocco, c. 1930
BSM S90.125


Averting Danger

Berber decorations, whether henna design or embroidery, often incorporate protective symbols. Various parts of the body are considered easy entry points for evil jnun, or spirits. Protection from these forces is sought through symbolism. Feet are considered to be vulnerable, and for this reason, henna designs on the feet and the decorations on footwear are rich with protective symbolism.