Quirky Facts About the History of Superstitions

Quirky Facts About the History of Superstition

For centuries, humans have sought explanations for the world around them and utilized superstitions to explain the unexplainable. This heritage, passed down from generation to generation, is a rich tapestry of curious and strange beliefs. While these superstitions might seem irrational to some, they reflect our collective attempt to control our fate and make sense of our world. Here are some intriguing facts about the history of superstitions:

Knocking On Wood

The custom of knocking on wood for good luck originated from the pagan belief that spirits inhabited trees. Knocking on a tree was meant to wake the spirit and call upon its protection. Another theory suggests that it comes from the Christian cross, which is usually made of wood; thus knocking on wood was a way of calling on Christ for protection.

Breaking A Mirror

The superstition about breaking a mirror bringing seven years of bad luck dates back to the Romans. They believed that life renewed itself every seven years, and breaking a mirror would damage one's self until the next seven-year renewal period.

Black Cats

Black cats have played a significant role in various superstitions across different cultures. In many Western cultures, they are associated with witchcraft and bad luck. However, in Japanese and British traditions, black cats are considered good omens and bringers of fortune.

The Number 13

The fear of the number 13, also known as Triskaidekaphobia, originated from various sources. One of the most notable is the Last Supper in Christian tradition, where the 13th guest, Judas, betrayed Jesus. This superstition still stands to this day, with many buildings skipping the 13th floor and many airlines avoiding a row 13 in their planes.

Rabbit's Foot

A token for good luck in many cultures, the rabbit's foot belief comes from ancient Celtic tribes in Britain. They believed that rabbits, being burrow animals, were in direct touch with the spirits of the underworld and thus brought prosperity and protection.

Friday the 13th

This infamous superstition combines the fears of Fridays and the number 13 into one. This phobia is so prevalent that it even has a specific term—"paraskevidekatriaphobia". The history behind this is also linked to Christian beliefs. It is said that Jesus was crucified on a Friday and Judas, who betrayed him, was the 13th guest at the Last Supper.

In conclusion, superstitions are a fascinating study of human behaviour and beliefs. Whether we view them as quirky, illogical or intriguing, they hold a mirror to our attempts to understand and navigate the world around us. Despite advancements in science and technology, these centuries-old superstitions continue to linger, proof of their enduring power over the human mind.