Category Archives: Superstitions

Superstitions

  • Never place your shoes on the table or on top of your bed it means bad luck.
  • To prepare dead people for their long journey to heaven it is common to put a new pair a new pair of shoes on the corpse before he was put in the coffin.
  • If a wild bird flies into your house that means a sign of death
  • When a hearse passes by, you are to raise your feet and hold your breath and close your eyes. That will keep death away from your door.
  • Itchy ear, someone’s talking about you; itchy nose, you’ll kiss a fool; itchy right palm, you’ll meet someone new; itchy left palm, money’s coming, itchy feet, you’re on your way somewhere
  • If you set the broom in a corner, you will surely have strangers come to the house
  • It is unlucky to enter a house, which you are going to occupy, by the back-door.
  • It is lucky for a baby to go out of the front door for the first time.
  • If there is a storm, there must be a window open at the back and the front of the house so that the lightning can pass right through.
  • An acorn should be carried to bring luck and ensure a long life.
  • Amber beads, worn as a necklace, can protect against illness or cure colds.
  • Think of five or six names of boys or girls you might marry, As you twist the stem of an apple, recite the names until the stem comes off. You will marry the person whose name you were saying when the stem fell off.
  • An apple a day keeps the doctor away.
  • Spit on a new bat before using it for the first time to make it lucky
  • It’s bad luck to put a hat on a bed.
  • The sound of bells drives away demons because they’re afraid of the loud noise.

Monday’s child is fair of face;
Tuesday’s child is full of grace;
Wednesday’s child is full of woe;
Thursday’s child has far to go;
Friday’s child is loving and giving;
Saturday’s child works hard for a living.
But the child that is born on the Sabbath day
is fair and wise, good and gay.

  • If the first butterfly you see in the year is white, you will have good luck all year.
  • Keep cats away from babies because they “suck the breath” of the child.
  • It is bad luck to light three cigarettes with the same match.
  • Ivy growing on a house protects the inhabitants from witchcraft and evil.
  • It is bad luck to kill a ladybug
  • If you catch a falling leaf on the first day of autumn you will not catch a cold all winter.
  • It’s bad luck to let milk boil over.
  • A mirror should be covered during a thunderstorm because it attracts lightning.
  • A white moth inside the house or trying to enter the house means death.
  • An onion cut in half and placed under the bed of a sick person will draw off fever and poisons.
  • It is bad luck to see an owl in the sunlight.
  • If you use the same pencil to take a test that you used for studying for the test, the pencil will remember the answers
  • If you spill pepper you will have a serious argument with your best friend
  • If 3 people are photographed together, the one in the middle will die first.
  • Put salt on the doorstep of a new house and no evil can enter.
  • Thunder following a funeral means that the dead person’s soul has reached heaven.
  • If the person buried lived a good life, flowers will grow on the grave. If the person was evil, weeds will grow.
  • Cats found lurking in coal mines are considered to be bad luck
  • If a cat sneezes near a bride-to-be on the morning of the wedding, she will have a happy life
  • If a cat washes behind its ears, it will rain
  • A three colored cat will keep the house safe from fire
  • If you pay money for a cat, it will never catch mice for you
  • It seems that choosing a day to cut your hair or nails will bode for you in the following way:

Cut them on Monday, you cut them for health;
cut them on Tuesday, you cut them for wealth;
cut them on Wednesday, you cut them for news;
cut them on Thursday, a new pair of shoes;
cut them on Friday, you cut them for sorrow;
cut them on Saturday, see your true love tomorrow;
cut them on Sunday, the devil will be with you all the week

  • Don’t show a baby it’s own face in the mirror for the first year of life, it will scare the soul out of the body.
  • Parsley should not be transplanted, it means a death in the family.
  • If a big black spider comes into the house it is a sure sign of death
  • Killing a spider causes rain
  • To drop a comb while you are combing your hair is a sign of a coming disappointment.
  • A cricket in the house brings good luck.
  • Pick a dandelion that has gone to seed. Take a deep breath and blow the seeds into the wind. Count the seeds that remain on the stem. That is the number of children you will have.
  • A dog howling at night when someone in the house is sick is a bad omen.
  • It’s bad luck to leave a house through a different door than the one used to come into it.
  • Dream of fish: someone you know is pregnant.
  • To drop a fork means a man is coming to visit.
  • A bed changed on Friday will bring bad dreams
  • Any ship that sails on Friday will have bad luck.
  • Cut your hair on Good Friday to prevent headaches in the year to come
  • Pulling out a gray or white hair will cause ten more to grow in its place.
  • A horseshoe hung in the bedroom will keep nightmares away.
  • If you drop scissors, it means your lover is being unfaithful to you.
  • If you sing before seven, you will cry before eleven
  • The devil can enter your body when you sneeze. Having someone say, “God bless you,” drives the devil away.
  • If 13 people sit down at a table to eat, one of them will die before the year is over.
  • If you bite your tongue while eating, it is because you have recently told a lie.
  • A bride’s veil protects her from evil spirits who are jealous of happy people.
  • A watermelon will grow in your stomach if you swallow a watermelon seed
  • Knock three times on wood after mentioning good fortune so evil spirits won’t ruin it.
  • If a woman is buried in black, she will return to haunt the family.
  • If you dream of death it’s a sign of a birth, if you dream of birth, it’s a sign of death.
  • If you touch a loved one who has died, you won’t have dreams about them

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Ring Around The Rosy- Bubonic Plague

The Mother Goose rhythm is nothing about cheerful thoughts but about death itself. More precisely it is felt to be about a dark time period in Europe- the Bubonic Plague which killed thousands of people. A plague felt to been caused due to superstition or another fear.

Ring around the rosy
A pocket full of posies
Ashes Ashes [or “Tishoo Tishoo”]
We all fall down!

“Ring around the rosy” is felt to refer to one of the early signs or symptoms of the disease. A ‘ring’ forming around a scab or eruption on the skin.

“Pocket full of posies” Some feel that the infections had an acrid smell thus infected people had flowers put around them or in their pockets to help make the smell more bearable. Others feel this refers to the smell of death that filled many communities; bodies of the dead, carted out of the houses to be picked up by wagons for burials, were sometimes covered with flowers to help lessen the smell of the rotting flesh. Townspeople would carry flowers or use lavender on handkerchiefs to hold over their nose and mouths to help make the air a bit more breathable.

The third line has two versions shared. Some of us learned “Tishoo Tishoo”, which is sharing one of the last symptoms of the disease before the person died.

Others of us learned “Ashes Ashes” which may refer to the amount of people dying daily. Remember that thousands of people died as a result of the plague. When the disease was at its height this could easily mean that hundreds of people a day were dying. Therefore it would been hard to bury them all, due to the shortage of healthy people able to dig mass graves or not enough hours in the day. There was also the fear of the victims’ bodies ‘infecting’ the earth. The plague prompted many communities to burn, or cremated, the bodies instead.

“We all fall down” We all eventually died if we caught the plague.

The Bubonic Plague was also known as the “Black Death”. It is said that thousands died from the infection but many more died from fear.

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