June 09, 2008

*Superstitions: Friday the 13th


Fridays themselves have been considered an unlucky day since medieval times. This is because the Catholic Church promoted Fridays as a day of penance and abstinence in honor of Jesus Christ, who died on a Friday. Friday is associated with other bad events: it is supposedly the day Eve offered an apple to Adam, the customary day for public executions to be held, and the day witches were supposed to prefer to hold their gatherings.

Any connection of the bad luck associated with Fridays to the bad luck associated with the number 13 was not documented until the 1870s. The fear of Friday the 13th did not even become widespread until the 20th Century.

Today, the anxiety about Friday the 13th has eclipsed the idea that all Fridays are unlucky, which is nice, because I like my Fridays a lot. Itd be too bad if they were all unlucky!

Reference: Most of the material from this post was found in David Pickering's Dictionary of Superstitions and Steve Roud's The Penguin Guide to the Superstitions of Britain and Ireland.

Posted by Jennifer at June 9, 2008 09:00 AM | TrackBack