Everyone has at least heard about the infamous Friday the 13th at least once in their lifetime. The number 13 comes with a lot of negative stigma or fear as many people are superstitious about the unlucky number. People are so scared that psychologists have actually come up with a word for the fear of Friday the 13th: paraskavedekatriaphobia. I thought it was a myth but recently as I paid close attention to my surroundings I found out that the hospital that I work at does not have room number 13. Furthermore, the place where I lived before, does not have building number 13. Are you starting to think that wait this is weird? So what are the reasons that people tend to skip the supposedly ominous number? In the honor of Friday the 13th that just passed us, here are the reasons I found why the number “13” is considered unlucky around the world.
1. According to this source, in tarot card reading number 13 symbolizes death. However, it could mean the death of a suffering or a new beginning.
2. In Norse mythology, there are some myths related to Loki (the thirteenth god) that he killed Baldr (another god), and Loki was the 13th person to come to his funeral. Also, it was believed that if thirteen people gather at once, one of them will die the upcoming year.
3. In the Babylonian Hammurabi's code, thirteen was associated with evil and the 13th law was omitted in 1910
4. On Friday 13 October 1307, King Philip IV of France ordered the arrest of the Knights Templar, and most of the knights were tortured and killed. Read more here
5. There is another myth from the biblical times that Judas who betrayed Jesus was the thirteenth disciple. More here.
6. In Greek culture, 13 number is considered as unlucky but instead of Friday the 13th they believe in Tuesday the 13th. The reason is that The fall of Constantinople to the Fourth Crusade occurred on Tuesday, April 13, 1204
7. In the ancient Egyptian culture, number 13 was associated with death as an afterlife.
8. Throughout time people in various parts of the world have believed that 13 did not feel right and associated number 12 as being more favorable. There are 12 months, 12 zodiacs, 12 hours, 12 gods of Olympus, and so on.
9. In mythological folklore, witches coven has 13 members
10. In the Persian myth, it was said that each month was associated with a constellation and those constellations ruled for thousand years. After the twelve constellations, they believed that there would be chaos and connected that to number 13.
11. What makes this date the worse is people freak out so much that they refuse to do business on Friday the 13th, or people don’t get married on this day. Also, people tend to avoid buying or selling a house on the 13th.
12. Some people believe that cutting hair or nails on Friday the 13th is a bad omen as that could lead to death in the family.
13. Some of the very misfortunate events happened on the 13th such as the Black Friday fires, the bombing of Buckingham Palace, Kansas floods, a deadly cyclone in Bangladesh, Kitty Genovese’s murder, the death of Tupac, a freak blizzard in Buffalo, NY. Check them out.
What are your thoughts on the number 13?