What are some of your greatest superstitions

Friday the 13th - That brings bad luck! 13 strange superstitions from around the world

That brings misfortune! 13 strange superstitions from around the world

Do you have a queasy feeling when you come across Friday the 13th while leafing through the calendar? Or do you steer clear of black cats? You are not alone in this. But in other parts of the world there are even more absurd superstitions. We have compiled 13 of them for you.

Broken mirrors, spilled salt, open umbrellas in the house: the list of well-known harbingers of bad luck is long. Superstition has been with people for hundreds of years. But as different as the cultures in our world are, the superstitions are just as different (and often quite strange).

Today is Friday the 13th, in popular belief the unlucky day par excellence. A good opportunity to take a look across the boundaries of our cultural area. What strange to crazy superstitions plague people in other countries? We have compiled 13 for you. Have fun reading it!

1. Hide your thumbs!

If you see a hearse in traffic in Japan, you should quickly put your thumbs in your trouser pockets. The Japanese expression oyayubi literally translated means “parent finger”. By hiding their thumbs, the Japanese prevent their parents from dying prematurely. Why? It is clear: Evil spirits like to hang around the hearse. If you fail to hide your thumbs, the nasty beasts could slip under your thumbnails and do evil to your parents.

2. Be careful with scissors and knives

In Turkey one should be careful not to hand someone a pair of scissors or a knife directly. This means that you will argue with this person later. In the worst case, it could even become a bitter enemy. To prevent this, scissors and knives are always put down in Turkey and never handed over from hand to hand.

3. Death from the fan

Although it can get pretty hot in South Korea in the summer months, it would hardly occur to anyone there to sleep at night with the fan running. In South Korea, the nocturnal "fan death" is a widespread superstition that comes up with many strange justifications. In order to escape death from the wind machine, many Korean manufacturers of fans today equip their devices with time switches.

4. Empty bucket? The day is in the bucket.

If you see someone in Russia carrying an empty container, it is considered a bad omen. It gets really bad when you meet a peasant woman in the country with an empty bucket. Then the day can no longer be saved. But the Russians are smart and if the bucket is empty they always put something in it - be it a rag, a tool or something else. The main thing is that the bucket doesn't stay empty and luck stays on hold.

5. Handbags have their own space

Handbags are arguably one of the most popular accessories among women around the world. But in Poland they are particularly careful with it. There it would not occur to any woman to simply put the bag on the floor. The reason is the superstition that you will lose money if you just put it on the floor. In some restaurants or bars, waiters even rush over if a visitor has not noticed her faux pas. Then a stool is quickly brought in for the good piece or the bag is hung over the back of the chair.

6. Don't disturb the elves!

In Iceland, superstition is an issue in itself. After all, according to official surveys, many Icelanders still believe that elves, fairies, trolls and gnomes inhabit the rough island in the north. In order not to anger the magical creatures, the road construction department is even planning its traffic projects around «Elfenfelsen» or «Elfenkirchen».

7. Whistling prohibited

In Lithuania, it shouldn't occur to you to cheerfully whistle a song inside a building. In the Baltic state, many people believe that this will conjure up the devil and bring harm to the house.

8. Don't wear anything green!

Are you registered for a wedding in Scotland? Nice. Still, you should leave your new green tie or blouse in the closet. This color - whether worn by the bride and groom or the guests - brings bad luck to the newly entered marriage.

9. Of honey paws and forest apples

A few hundred bears still live in the wild in Finland. It is not uncommon for you to come across one of these furry giants on a walk in the forest. The Finns have specified around a dozen names for the bear, including "honeydew paw" or "forest apple". The reason for this is a superstition according to which the bear should be called by its real name. In order to be able to speak of the animal carefree in Finland without it suddenly appearing, it has been given nicknames.

10. Too salt for business

In the South American state of Peru there is still deep superstition: in the evenings, salt is no longer sold in many areas of the country. Many Peruvian shopkeepers believe that there is a risk of financial damage to their own business.

11. Evil doorstep

Nobody knows exactly why, but in Russia you are not allowed to pass objects over the doorstep and greet each other. Anyone who does it challenges disaster. This custom has even led to a bizarre situation that has gone down in history: on the Mir space station, the Russian astronauts refused to shake hands with their American colleagues over the doorstep - precisely because of this superstition.

Damn August 12th

In Europe it is considered to be one of the most beautiful summer months of the year. In Argentina, on the other hand, August is an absolute unlucky month. Especially in rural areas of the country, superstition persists, so that business deals, trips, operations, removals and weddings never take place in August, but are postponed to September.

13. Not 13, but 4

While 13 is clearly the biggest unlucky number for us, people in China are afraid of the number 4. The fact that this number is so negatively affected in the Land of Dawn is because the four is pronounced the same as the word for death (Si) . The number is considered so ominous that in China you never have a four for the number of guests at a party. Company foundings are hardly ever completed on a day that contains a four. (luk)