So, what about Friday the 13? Why do people consider it an unlucky day? And, why is Friday the 13th considered particularly dangerous?
I personally, LOVE the number 13. Why? Because I was born on the 13th, so it’s my lucky day! I’ve have my share of Friday the 13th birthdays which I consider as lucky. Another year older? Yes, it’s lucky when you consider the alternative!
In thinking about writing today’s post, I did a little research about what this “unlucky 13” thing is all about. 13 is my favorite number, so why do many people shun and fear it?
A brief Google search yielded a long list of negative ideas about the number 13. Did you know that there is a surprising segment of the population that is paralyzed and afraid to venture out of their homes on the 13? Or that many organizations like hospitals and hotels skip the number 13 for room numbers and even floors of buildings?
Here are a few interesting facts about the origin of the superstition, which shows up across in many cultures.
- In Ancient Rome, groups of witches (known as a coven) were organized in groups of 12, with the devil being the 13th
- In Norse mythology, there is a tale about a dinner party with 12 guests. A 13th uninvited guest shows up and causes murder and mayhem.
- The one I have heard most frequently is that there were 13 guests at the Last Supper. Jesus and his Twelve Disciples makes 13, one of whom, Judas, was charged with the betrayal and ultimate crucifixion of Jesus.
That’s why 13 guests at a dinner party is considered unlucky. So much so that there is a French group that offers to attend dinner parties so that there are never 13 guests in attendance.
As for Friday, this much maligned day of the week fans and detractors. In some cultures, faiths and traditions, Friday a day of reverence, fasting or worship.
In our culture, though, it gets mostly bad press. The Crucifixion of Jesus happened on Friday, a bad thing in and of itself though it became the gateway to salvation for Christians.
Many of the negative superstitions around Friday are related to sailing, perhaps because of ill fated voyages that started on Friday and came to a bad end. Apollo 13? Enough said.
When you add the number 13’s bad reputation together with the negative connotations around Friday, you get a day that generates a lot if attention every time it appears on our calendars.
So, are you a fan of 13? Of Friday the 13th? Or does the number have you hiding under the covers? I’d love to hear your story!