Superstitions around the world

Friday the 13th is an unlucky day in many countries around the world, as is Tuesday the 13th in Spain and Friday the 17th in Italy.


Let’s have a look at some interesting superstitions from around the world…


  • Norway

In Norway it is believed that whistling at the sun will make it rain!


It is also said that if you see a black cat, you should spit on the ground three times to avoid bad luck and if you are in a romantic relationship you should not knit a sweater for your partner as it will bring bad luck to the relationship and the superstition says your partner will leave you!


  • Germany

In Germany, the superstition goes that if you toast someone with water, you are wishing death upon them!


  • Turkey

In Turkey, it is bad luck to start a journey on Friday the 13th. It is also bad luck to chew gum at night – it is said that if you chew gum after dark it becomes the flesh of dead bodies!


  • Russia

In Russia it is bad luck to wish someone “Happy Birthday” before their birthday and giving yellow flowers is a terrible gift – it means that you are cursing your friend with infidelity!


  • Japan

The number 4 is considered very unlucky in Japan so much so that hospitals don’t usually have a fourth floor and this is the case in hotels too!


  • The UK

In the UK, putting new shoes on the table is believed to bring bad luck as is opening an umbrella indoors!


What superstitions exist in your country? Do you believe in them?


Vocabulary


Whistle = silbar


Spit on the ground = escupir al suelo


Knit = tejer


Toast = brindar


Wish death upon (someone) = desear la muerte de (alguien)


Chew gum= masticar chicle


Flesh = carne


Curse = maldecir/maldición


Infidelity = infidelidad


Fourth floor = 4ª planta


Open an umbrella = abrir un paraguas