Popular Culture

The Superstitions of ‘Friday the 13th’


Today will be the first Friday the 13th of 2015. For many of us, Friday the 13th is just a day of superstition an “unlucky day”, however wither you’re a believer in the curse of Friday the 13th there’s always this voice in the back of your head that says “what if?…”


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Superstitions are not just a thing of the past, you may not know this but they affect are lives even today. For instance you rarely find a 13th floor in a hotel. . Some surgeons refuse to operate on days that are associated with bad luck. Don’t forget weddings…. From the ceremony itself, to carrying the bride over the threshold, almost every nuptial rite is rooted in some form of superstition. Superstitions connect us to our ancient ancestors by way of traditions. Here are three of history’s favorite superstitions. How they came to be might surprise you:


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1. Breaking a Mirror
The ancient Romans thought that human life renewed itself every 7-years which coincides with the cycles of the moon. A reflection was considered a person’s “magical likeness” or even their soul , so it stands to reason that if there reflected image was shattered, their next 7 year cycle would also be shattered. Victorian parents feared mirrors, believing that a mirror could trap their infant’s reflection and stunt their growth. Or even kill them by imprisoning their souls. Currently, many Jewish families cover mirrors after the passing of a loved one for fear the departed soul might wandering into the reflection, and get lost on its way to eternity.


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3. Sneezing
Most of us say God-Bless-You after someone sneezes, it can even be considered rude if you don’t .Some simular practice to this is found around the world in almost even culture. What is it about a simple sneeze that requires a blessing? In ancient times it was believed that the soul lived in the form of our breath. A sneeze could therefore allow the soul to escape from the body.


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3. The Number 13
Fear of the number 13 is one of the most prevalent superstitions. One of the earliest known superstitions from 13 comes from ancient India, where it is considered unlucky for 13 people to sit together. In Nordic, the most famous historical history of the number 13 involves Judas Iscariot who was the “traitor” apostle, and was the 13th man at the Last Supper. Friday the 13th also marked the mass execution of the medieval Knights Templar and the Christian knights were all but wiped out beginning on October 13th, 1307 which was a Friday.

Michelle Hinojosa
Michelle Hinojosa writes and reports media for Popcrunch and is an active member in the LBGT community. She is a graduate of Washington State University with degree's in Social Services, English, History and Psychology.

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