Friday the 13th: the Superstition

Today is the first of two “Friday the 13th†days in 2017. Paraskevidekatriaphobia, the fear of Friday the 13th, is a real fear, but is it founded? Whether you’re superstitious or not read on to find out how the legend began and some of the most popular superstitions of this day.

The History of Friday the 13th

While Paraskevidekatriaphobia is the fear of Friday the 13th it may have begun with a fear of a number. Triskaidekaphobia is the fear of the number 13, which has long been associated with negative meaning. According to, the number is regarded as evil and unnecessary, as it follows the more important number 12, in numerology. In an article written by Sara Coughlin for the Refinery29 website, there are two origins of fear. The first traces back to biblical times. Friday is believed to be the day Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit and were cast out from the Garden of Eden. Jesus was also crucified on a Friday, according to the Bible. The number 13 gets its bad name from the Last Supper. There were 13 apostles depicted, and the 13th apostle to arrive was Judas, the betrayer of Jesus.

The second event gets its background from the Da Vinci Code. The Da Vinci Code alludes that the Knights of Templar were arrested, tortured, and killed on, you guessed it, Friday the 13th. While there is some truth to this, it is not believed that this could have caused all of the superstition. The fear was popularized in the 1900s in film that connected the day and the number, according to National Geographic.

What are the superstitions?

According to the International Business Times, these things can bring bad luck on this spooky day:

  • Getting a hair cut
  • Being passed by a funeral procession
  • Starting a trip
  • Breaking a mirror
  • Being passed by a black cat
  • Walking under a ladder
  • Setting sail

and even

  • Being born

A blue circle with an image of a bag.