Not walking under ladders and avoiding black cats are just some of the superstitions people participate in to keep luck on their side on Friday the 13th.
Many believe that luck will elude them, as this day has long been associated with incidents of misfortune.
But why exactly is Friday the 13th associated with bad luck and misfortune?
Read below for everything you need to know about the supposed bad luck that many people associate with this day.
The 1980 film Friday the 13th made the date and associated superstition widely known.
Why is Friday the 13th “bad luck”?
The association with bad luck begins with the number 13 alone. In Abrahamic religions, 12 is considered a number representing perfection and completion; there are 12 disciples of Jesus Christ, Abraham has 12 sons, there are 12 tribes of Israel.
The number 13 is therefore symbolically considered imperfect. At the Last Supper of Jesus Christ, Judas Iscariot, the betrayer of Christ, was the 13th guest.
The concept of a 13th guest associated with evil or betrayal extends beyond Christianity, with Norse mythology as well. with a similar story. At a Valhalla dinner for the god Baldur, Loki arrived as the 13th guest and murdered the god.
The association between Friday and the number 13 can also be traced back to Christian tradition, with Judas Iscariot being the 13th guest and betraying Christ on Maundy Thursday, leading to his execution on Good Friday.
These ideas spread for hundreds of years, becoming stronger and more influential in the Middle Ages with exaggerated accounts of how the French king Philip IV arrested the Templars on Friday the 13th of the year 1307.
Not walking under ladders and avoiding black cats are just some of the superstitions people participate in to keep luck on their side on Friday the 13th. Pictured: Two men test the gas pressure in street lights , Westminster, London, 1910
By the 19th century, the myth seemed popular enough to inspire a countermovement. The Club of Thirteen was shape at the end of the 19th century to reject superstition.
Founded by Civil War soldier Captain William Fowler, the Thirteen Club’s first meeting was held Friday, January 13 at 8:13 p.m. in Room 13 of the Knickerbocker Cottage on Sixth Avenue and 28th. There appeared to be no availability on 13th Street.
However, the myth of Friday the 13th truly crystallized in the 20th century, when direct links between the date and misfortune began to be established.
In 1907, businessman Thomas W. Lawson published a novel called Friday the 13th, in which a young stockbroker decides to wreak financial chaos on Wall Street that day.
News site Voice says that the first known mention of Friday the 13th in the media was on March 14, 1908. A notice in the New York Times describes a senator’s bill arriving in the Senate that same day: “Friday the 13th brings no fear to Senator Owen,” the notice reads.
Cut to 1980 and Paramount Pictures’ slasher film Friday The 13th was released to solidify the mythos and add a strong horror element.
The film franchise’s villain, Jason Voorhees, was born on Friday the 13th, and the key murders at the start of the first film take place on Friday the 13th.
However, we’re only missing one film for the aptly named franchise, as there are only 12 Friday The 13 films as of July 2018.
Not surprisingly, superstition had very real consequences. effects. Thomas W Lawson may have been pleased to learn that financial markets and businesses sometimes experience moments of panic on Friday the 13th.
On Friday July 13, 2012, China’s GDP fell by 7.6 percent. In 1989, Friday October 13 became known as Black Friday after a deal to buy United Airlines fell through and global markets fell.
According to the Stress Management Center and the Phobia Institute of North Carolina, businesses lose nearly a billion dollars when the 13th of the month falls on a Friday. Travel site Kayak said Friday June 13, 2014 was the cheapest day to fly that year.
How often does Friday the 13th come?
There are usually two Fridays the 13th each year. Today’s Friday October 13 is the second of 2023, with the first coming back in January.
This will be the last Friday the 13th of the year, with the date recurring again in September and December 2024.
American rapper Tupac Shakur was killed in a drive-by shooting on Friday September 13, 1996.
Famous Friday the 13th Events in History
In 1307, King Philip IV of France arrested the Templars on Friday the 13th.
Buckingham Palace was bombed by the Germans during World War II in September 1940.
Kitty Genovese was murdered in New York in March 1965; his death led to the creation of the term “bystander effect”.
Rapper Tupac Shakur was killed in September 1996.
What is triskaidekaphobia?
Triskaidekaphobia is the fear of the number 13.
However, there is a specific term for the fear of Friday the 13th: friggatriskaidekaphobia, also sometimes called paraskevidekatriaphobia.
The first term refers to the queen of the Norse gods, Frigga, who was also Baldur’s mother.