Superstitions are defined as a belief that lacks rational proof and relies on the magical aspects of the Universe that would decide the luck, or absence of it, of a situation or a person.

There are a lot of situations or objects that people use as their motto for life, many of them have an explanation of why they exist, and their origins are pretty interesting. Next, we are going to talk about 10 popular superstitions and their origins.


10. Black Cats

via CatVills

Black cats are often related to bad omen and dark energy. In tales, they are always witches’ pets, and this is because, during medieval times, the Catholic Church gave them the image of being the reincarnation of the devil and the physical representation of the night. The legend says that if a black cat crosses your way, this would bring bad luck to you because it is blocking your connection with God, while if it walks towards you, everything will be fine. However, all cats are praised and sacred in the Egyptian culture.


9. Fingers Crossed

via iStock

Whenever we really desire something, we cross our fingers. This is a symbol to block bad luck and it started because of crosses. Crosses were meant to have power in their central zone and they were imponent and used when something was truly wanted. Crossing the fingers and focusing on the center has the same purpose as using a cross, so all of the good energy will concentrate and make our wishes come true.


8. Walking Under A Ladder

via Common Superstitions

Beware if you walk under a ladder because you are calling your own death. There are many hypotheses of the origin of this superstition. One related to Christianism says that as the ladder creates a triangle, walking through it would break the bond between Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. On the other hand, it is also related to the fact that people were hanged above ladders and the underpart is hunted with the ghosts of the deceased.


7. Horseshoes

via Helpful Horse Hints

Horseshoes have been a symbol of good luck since many centuries ago, and this is because of the legend of St Dunstan. The tale talks about St Dunstan, a smith who a disguised Devil approached, so he put horseshoes on his feet making him unable to move. The Devil asked to be free and St Dunstan only agreed if he promised that he would never enter into a home that was protected with a horseshoe.


6. Spilling Salt

via Medium

The thing with spilling salt bringing bad luck is related to the fact that it has always been used for preserving edibles. This may sound a little weird, but spilling it represents that every relationship, friendly, familiar or romantic, would be unstable and in jeopardy, as it would no longer be preserved. However, other theories say that it is bad luck because, in early civilizations, salt was a precious thing, and spilling it would be a waste.


5. Rabbit’s Foot

via Depop

This one started in the Celtic culture, and they bring luck because of two reasons. First, rabbits live underground, and ancient Celtic people thought that they had a special communication with the gods when they hid belowground. Later, since rabbits are pretty fertile creatures, they started to be related to fertility so they were used by women who wanted to have children.


4. Friday The 13th

via History

The number 13 is perceived as something negative in many cultures because it comes after 12 which is balanced, basically, 13 represents messiness. Although, in Norse mythology, it is because of Loki, the god of mischief, who was the 13th guest that arrived at the Valhalla dinner and created some trouble among gods. Now, why does Friday have something to do with it? Well, for one side it is because Jesus was crucified on a Friday, while in the U.S, the tradition started since the executions in the XIX century used to be on Friday.


3. Wishbone

via The Daily Mail

People love to break the wishbone from the chicken’s collarbone and see whose wish is going to became true. This tradition started in the Etruscan Italian empire when people saw this bone as something sacred that was able to predict the future, so they would let them dry and keep them for when they had a wish. The Romans embraced the tradition but they started to do it between two people because they weren’t enough for everybody.


2. Breaking A Glass

via Two Way Mirror

Glasses reflect our image, so Romans believed that they hold traces of our soul. If you break a glass your soul would be doomed for seven years, since other beliefs say that that is the time it needs to be renovated. Still, the superstition started because at that time glass was an expensive well so builders would say to the help that if they broke the glass of their master they would be seven years left without salary.


1. Four-Leaf Clover

via Daily Sabah

Four-leaf clovers are almost unique and impossible to find. They are 1 in 10 million, so whenever you find one you will be filled with good luck. The legend says that Eve took one of these when he and Adam were banished from Paradise and this was a reminder of Eden, while the Celtics believed that four-leaf clovers had magical powers and they were a shield against bad energy and the Devil.

It is awesome how everything has a starting point, even though these incredible old traditions that we just take as daily things. Do you believe in any of these superstitions?