Friday, November 13, 2015

5 Superstitions for Friday 13th!

Hi, I'm Roisin from Little Learner Toolbox and I'm so happy to be guest blogging here today. Happy Friday 13th! Friday 13th is one of those days that is synonymous with bad luck (for some at least). For example, people are less likely to fly or get married on Friday 13th. Where did these superstitions come from?  Are there any truths behind the superstitions?

Here are 5 ‘superstitions’ fun facts to share with your class for Friday 13th!

1)  Is 13 really an unlucky number?
 Triskaidekaphobia is the fear of the number13. Many people believe that the number 13 is unlucky. Some airlines and hotels recognize that people think that the number 13 is unlucky and skip the number when they are numbering their floors and seat rows and skip the 13th floor or number 13. There are some differing opinions as to why the number 13 is considered an unlucky number. Some think it is because there were 13 people at the Last Supper, and others say that it originates in Norse mythology. One of the gods, Loki, was not invited to a dinner for 12 other gods.  Loki, the 13th god, killed another god out of anger. 

2 ) Is it really bad luck to walk under a ladder?
People often believe that it is bad luck to walk under a ladder. Many think that this superstition comes from ancient Egypt. Egyptians believed strongly in the power of the pyramids.  When a ladder leaned up against a wall, the triangle shape it created resembled the triangular shape of a pyramid. Egyptians believed that the power of the pyramid could be broken if someone walked underneath the ladder. There are also those who point out that the obvious explanation for this superstition is that if you bump against a ladder as you pass underneath it, you could dislodge something and end up being bumped on the head by it!

3 ) Is it bad luck to open an umbrella indoors?
Many people believe that this superstition comes from Victorian times, when the umbrella was a much more difficult item to open indoors. Opening an umbrella indoors would have been a lot of effort and the spring that opened the spokes often sprang open quite quickly. Opening an umbrella indoors was said to bring death to your home, and you would have to wonder if that superstition came about because the umbrellas themselves were so clumsy to open, were full of pointed spikes,, and could have caused harm if opened indoors. Some believe that the bad luck associated with opening an umbrella indoors actually comes from ancient Egypt, where opening an umbrella indoors could be seen as disrespectful towards the sun god. 

4 ) Is the four leaf clover really lucky?
Only 1 in every 10,000 clovers has 4 leaves, making each 4 leaf clover a special find. Long ago in Ireland the druids believed that the four leaf clover possessed magical powers and could ward off evil spirits. The Celts also believed that four leaf clovers were lucky charms. The four leaves of the clover stand for Faith, hope, love and luck. Children in the middle ages believed that the four leaf clover would help them to see fairies. 

 5 ) Is it bad luck or good luck for a black cat to cross your path?
It hasn't always been the case that black cats have been seen as bad luck if they crossed your path. In ancient Egypt cats were seen as being good luck, and in Europe sailors saw their cat as being a good luck and sailors often brought a black cat with them on their journeys, while the sailors wife may keep a cat at home too for a even more good luck. In Japan the black cat is also seen as possessing good luck. So depending on where you come from the black cat is good or bad luck! 


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