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Curses, Spells & Incantations

Count Istvan Teleky's Spell - On episode No. 142 "Three Wishes for Opie" on the sitcom THE ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW/CBS/1960-68, a deck of Tarot cards seemingly under the spell of an 18th century Count Istvan Teleky was granting wishes to the folks in the town of Mayberry.

The cards were found inside an ornate box bought at a police auction in Mt. Pilot by Deputy Barney Fife (Don Knotts) who believed the box was owned by a band of roving gypsies.

To conjure the spirit of the Count, Barney sprinkled dust over the flame of an Aladdin-like oil lamp and read the incantation from a book he found in the box. The spell read:

"I call upon you Oh, Count Teleky, to impart your mystical powers to earthly things. I ask you whose presence hovers over us eternally, to invest these cards with your very spirit."

As Barney discovered "When two identical cards come up on the same pile that's when you got something." Two flaming torches meant three wishes were to be granted. Whereas two unicorns meant only one wish.

When Opie Taylor (Ron Howard) wished for a jack knife, and a "B" on his report card, he got both. Then Barney wished for a fingerprint set (which he ordered 6 months earlier) and it arrived.

The accumulation of coincidences convinced Barney that his wish to get Sheriff Andy Taylor (Andy Griffith) married to Helen Crump (Aneta Corsaut), the town schoolteacher would come true. It did not (at least not then).

TRIVIA NOTE: Other magical chants used to prevent hexes and bad omens on the program included "Wink 'um pink 'um, nodamus rex, protect us all, from the man with the hex." (Said while reaching your right arm over your head and touching your left earlobe with your eyes closed.); "Come fish come, come fish come, Sam's at the gate, with a frosted cake, come fish come...Fly away buzzard, fly away crow, way down South where the winds don't blow. Rub your nose, and give two winks, and save us from this awful jinx"; and "Ebum, shoobum, shoobum, shoobum" (Andy before the signing of Opie and Andilina's marriage certificate). See also "Curse of the Claw"

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