Friday the 13th – Myth or Realistic?

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Across the nation people may be experiencing ‘Paraskevidekatriaphobia’, the fear of Friday the 13th. It’s a day in which people will be trying their very best to avoid black cats and walking under ladders. But, where does the famous unlucky ‘Friday the 13th’ originate from?

There is no definite evidence of the superstition before the nineteenth century, but according to Catholic scripture it originates from the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and his 13 disciples at the last supper. Another historical association for this anonymous date, is the arrest and execution of the Christian warriors, the Knight’s Templar in 1307.

This particular day was then popularised by historical fictional writers such as Dan Brown, and was also referenced to in horror stories such as the famous ‘Friday the 13th’ films.

So, what superstitions do we need to look out for? StaffsLive have got you covered!

Magpies

Magpie

Image provided by Phil Kirk (flickr)

“One for sorrow, two for joy.” It is said if you don’t salute a lone magpie, then you will receive bad luck. Some people will even speak to the magpie, “Good morning Mr. Magpie” followed with a salute or a tip of a hat. This shows that you have acknowledged the bird. And, it is said they are associated with Witchcraft!

Walking under a ladder

Image provided by Helena (pixabay)

Some people will go out of their way to walk around a ladder rather than under one. This is because they believe it will give you bad luck! A ladder leaning up against a wall was seen as a triangle shape, which represents the Holy Father, the Holy Son, and the Holy Spirit. To walk through this triangle would be ‘breaking the trinity.’

Breaking a mirror

Image provided by anaterate (pixabay)

A very famous superstition. It is said that if you break a mirror then you will get seven years of bad luck, ouch! This is said to originate from ancient Rome, as people of this era thought that your soul would leave you if you broke a mirror.

Opening an umbrella inside

Umbrella

Image provided by IvicaM90 (pixabay)

According to superstition, bad luck will ‘rain’ on you if you open your umbrella inside. Some people believe that the superstition comes from Ancient Egypt, where opening an umbrella inside could anger the Sun God Ra.

A black cat crossing your path

Image provided by Pixabay

During the middle ages, bad black cat superstitions took hold. They were also associated with witches, as people believed black cats and witches worked together. So if a black cat crosses your path, it is said to be a bad omen.

With all of this in mind, we went out onto the streets and spoke to members of the public about whether they think Friday the 13th is a myth or realistic.

(Additional reporting by Gabby Sutton).

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