From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
"Little horn" redirects here. For the Tasmanian mountain, see Cradle Mountain. For use in prophecy, see Daniel 7. For the Marilyn Manson song, see Antichrist Superstar.
A silver cornicello charm.

A cornicello or cornetto, Italian for "little horn" or "hornlet", is an amulet worn to protect against the evil eye. In Neapolitan, it is called cuornuciello or variants thereof.

Origins and styles[edit]

In Italy people may wear the cornicello - an amulet of good luck used for protection against the evil-eye curse. It consists of a twisted horn-shaped charm often made of gold, silver, bone, terracotta or red coral.[1] Originally cornecelli resembled the twisted horn of an African eland, though over the years they have become stylized and less horn-like. A regionally popular amulet, they occur primarily in Italy and in America among descendents of Italian immigrants. According to some Calabrese traditions, the horn was once modeled after a chili pepper, due to its abundance in the region.[citation needed]


Related (or not) to the corno is the mano cornuta or "horned hand." This is an Italian hand-gesture (or an amulet imitative of the gesture) that can be used to indicate that a man has been cuckolded ("wears the horns") and also to ward off the evil eye. Mano means "hand" and corno means "horn."[1]


  1. ^ a b Maberry, Jonathan and Janice Gable Bashman (September 2010). Wanted Undead Or Alive: Vampire Hunters and Other Kick-Ass Enemies of Evil. New York, NY: Kensington Publishing Corp. pp. 165–166. ISBN 0-8065-2821-4.