Bring misfortune, cause disease or trouble by using your eye

Dear friends!!!

Below I have given several expressions I have found in my dictionary which mean bringing misfortune to someone, causing disease or trouble by using your eye. Of course, this is a superstition, but some people still believe in such things and even visit soothsayers in order to get rid of the curse sent on them. I wonder which expressions are idiomatic and mean what I have described:

1) to put the evil eye on/upon someone
2) to bewitch someone
3) to jinx someone
4) to put a hex/jinx on someone
5) to put the whammy on someone

Thanks a lot!!!
 
  • panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Of these, only the first necessarily involves "using your eye".
    The others may involve a wide range of actions or incantations.

    Do we "put the evil eye on <someone>"?
    Or do we "give <someone> the evil eye"?
    The latter, I believe.
     
    Of these, only the first necessarily involves "using your eye".
    The others may involve a wide range of actions or incantations.

    Do we "put the evil eye on <someone>"?
    Or do we "give <someone> the evil eye"?
    The latter, I believe.
    Thank you!!!

    What do the rest suggest to you (just in brief)? Can they involve any kind of incantation at all?
     
    Last edited:

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Bewitching, hexing and jinxing may involve gestures, activities of some kind, special objects, and probably some kind of verbalisation (not that I'm an expert or anything :)).
    I haven't heard of the "whammy".
     
    Bewitching, hexing and jinxing may involve gestures, activities of some kind, special objects, and probably some kind of verbalisation (not that I'm an expert or anything :)).
    I haven't heard of the "whammy".
    Thanks again!!!

    First, a few comments about "whammy". I have never heard about it either and hence my question. However, after typing "hex" in the search line I found as follows: http://www.wordreference.com/definition/hex. At the top of the page I have encountered "He put the whammy on me". I suspect this might be the AE usage of the word "whammy" and for this reason you have not recognized it at first.

    Anyway, I am more interested in the way the original words are used. As far as I have understood, "bewitch" also means "to attract very strongly" For instance, a woman can bewitch you (if you are a man, of course :)) by her very attractive appearance so that you marry her and she gains access to all money you have and starts spending it on jewellery, footwear, cosmetics, expensive trips, etc. :) Besides this, "bewitch" can have its literal meaning - to become affected by a sorceress, for instance, a witch, in other words, who makes you do something she wants.

    "Jinx" is a person who is believed to bring bad luck to those surrounding him. Also the expression "to put a jinx on/upon someone" must exist, but I am not completely sure. If it exists, does it mean that a person has been cursed? Which expression seems better to you: "to jinx" or "to put jinx on/upon someone"?

    "Hex" seems to me to have the same meaning apart from the first one given above (AFAIK, "hex" does not mean a person who brings bad luck.

    I think "to cast an evil spell over someone" also means to curse them. Not necessarily by using an eye but can be so as well.

    Please, tell me if I am correct in my reasoning? Probably, you have to add something more to what I have suggested as explanations.

    Thanks!!!
     
    Last edited:

    margiemarz

    Member
    English-American
    Jinx can be a person - He stood behind me at the casino and I lost. He is a jinx.
    I can jinx someone or put a jinx on them.
    Hex is similar to bewitch or to put a spell on...
    Whammy refers to putting an evil spell on someone - usually by casting an evil eye. If both eyes are used, it is a double whammy.
    Needless to say, casting an evil spell is a form of cursing someone.
    This is all I know. Hope its been of some help.
     
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