SUPERSTITIONS AND THEIR ORIGINS
Added on: 21st Mar 2015
IT'S BAD LUCK TO OPEN AN UMBRELLA INDOORS
Although some people suggest it started with the superstitions of
the pharaohs in ancient Egypt, most historians trace the belief back
to Victorian times when the clumsy opening mechanism of metal
spoke umbrellas would be a legitimate indoor hazard.
WALKING UNDER A LADDER IS BAD LUCK
This one really did start in ancient Egypt. A ladder resting against a
wall formed a triangle and Egyptians regarded triangles as sacred
(the pyramids?) so walking through one was not cool.
BROKEN MIRRORS LEAD TO SEVEN YEARS OF BAD LUCK
In ancient Greece catoptromancy was the act of looking into a mirror
to predict the future by analysing someone’s reflection and a
distorted reflection was not good. When the Romans introduced the
idea that people have 7 year alternating cycles of health and sickness
the modern superstition was born.
WHEN YOU SPILL SALT, TOSS SOME OVER YOUR LEFT
SHOULDER TO AVOID BAD LUCK
Around 3,500 BC the Sumerians were the first to do this. Although
the exact reason is unknown it spread to the Egyptians,
Assyrians, and later the Greeks.
KNOCK ON WOOD TO PREVENT DISSAPOINTMENT
In spite of being one of the most popular superstitions of modern times,
historians are uncertain of its origins. One possibility is that it originated
via the habit of touching a crucifix while taking an oath.
HANG A HORSESHOE ON YOUR DOOR WITH THE
OPEN END UP FOR GOOD LUCK
During the middle ages people thought witches feared horses and
would shy away from any sign of them. For this reason they attached
horseshoes to their houses in this manner.
A BLACK CAT CROSSING YOUR PATH IS UNLUCKY
Beginning with the Egyptians people formerly believed that cats
were good luck. It wasn’t until King Charles the I lamented over the
death of his cat claiming his luck was gone that the belief
THE NUMBER 13 IS UNLUCKY
Also known as triskaidekaphobia, fear of the number 13 originates
in Norse mythology when 12 Gods were having a dinner and then
Loki, the God of strife and evil, crashed the party and ultimately
caused the death of Balder, one of the Gods.
FINDING A FOUR LEAF CLOVER IS LUCKY
The Celts believed that four leaf clovers were powerful objects and that
they could be used to ward off evil.