ward off evil spirits

quietdandelion

Banned
Formosa/Chinese
Being superstitious, Kate brings a charm with her wherever she goes to ward off evil spirits.





For a start, could I use "spell" to replace "charm" without changing its meaning.
Second, does "ward off" mean "avoid passively" or "resist actively?" Thanks.
 
  • David

    Banned
    ward off means protect oneself from, place obstacles in the path of

    a charm I think might be a spell and also might be a physical object, whereas a spell would be only something one said or wrote or the effect of some charm...

    In the stories, the cross held aloft is a charm to ward off vampires, whereas "her beauty cast a spell on me."
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    ward off means protect oneself from, place obstacles in the path of

    a charm I think might be a spell and also might be a physical object, whereas a spell would be only something one said or wrote or the effect of some charm...

    In the stories, the cross held aloft is a charm to ward off vampires, whereas "her beauty cast a spell on me."
    Can a charm be a spoken spell? I've only known it as an object of some kind.
     

    GreenWhiteBlue

    Senior Member
    USA - English
    A "charm" would work better than "spell". A "spell" is words, usually said aloud (a cognate, by the way, is the word "Gospel"; = god spel, or good news in modern English.) A charm, though, can be an object such as an amulet, and it makes more sense when used with "bring".
     
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