Triskaidekaphobia is “the fear of 13.” Are you aware of why today is considered unlucky, anyhow?

friday, 13

Can you turn to the person next to you, look them in the eye, and honestly say that you have never felt a twinge of concern in the morning when you realize it is Friday the 13th? It’s time for triskaidekaphobes to acknowledge their shared superstition, learn its possible source, and try to gain some insight into what it means for millions of people to hold such a belief.

Let’s start with Friday, named for one of two Norse goddesses, Freya or Frigga. While modern folks may exclaim “TGIF,” some traditions consider “Frigga’s Day” to be unlucky. Some Christians aren’t fond of today because they believe Jesus was crucified on a Friday.

(What does the name August have to do with telling the future from a flock of birds? Here’s the answer.)

Many cultures have an issue with 13, though we can’t say for certain just how many architects actually omit a 13th floor from a highrise. The precise circumstances that made Friday and 13 such an intense combination for superstition are unclear, but a study speculates that businesses lose millions of dollars in revenue from phobias of the day. Some possible origins revolve around the Battle of Hastings, the Knights Templar, or the goddess Frigga once again.

Whatever the source, it’s certain that, however much we want to believe that rationality informs our decisions, logical and systematic thought has limits. For further proof, simply spend some time with a dictionary. Inconsistencies, contradictions and uncertain origins abound.

What are some other examples of superstition in contemporary life? Saying gesundheit when someone sneezes is certainly one famous word-based example, but what are a few less obvious situations that you’ve experienced?

Taiwan National Security Council head resigns

AP Worldstream February 11, 2010 | DEBBY WU Taiwan’s National Security Council head resigned Thursday, depriving the president of one of his most trusted advisers, widely credited with crafting the island’s policy of reconciliation with rival China.

Su Chi said he was resigning for family and health reasons, but did not elaborate. He was successfully treated for liver cancer about 20 years ago.

Su also expressed a wish not to let “domestic political controversy diminish growing mutual trust” with Beijing, an apparent reference to a widely criticized deal he brokered with the U.S. to lift import bans on certain types of American beef. Opposition to the agreement in Taiwan was seen as a major factor in the poor results achieved by Ma’s Nationalist Party in recent local and legislative elections. website national security council

Wang Yu-chi, spokesman for President Ma Ying-jeou, said Ma accepted Su’s resignation.

Wang said Su would be replaced by Hu Wei-jen, who was vice head of the National Security Council under former President Chen Shui-bian and later became Taiwan’s representative to Singapore. He left the Singapore post after lashing out at Chen’s anti-China policy in 2007.

As head of the National Security Council since Ma took office in May 2008, Su played a key role in designing the president’s policy of improving relations with Beijing. The policy, which has concentrated on tightening trade and economic links across the 100-mile (160-kilometer) -wide Taiwan Strait, has helped reduce tensions to their lowest level since the sides split amid civil war in 1949.

Su told reporters he felt a keen sense of accomplishment as he stepped down.

“After 20 months and 20 days in office we have now finished our mission for this phase,” he said.

Su said China and Taiwan “have banished the possibility of war, and cross-strait relations are now facilitating a new condition of mutual economic benefit and a political win-win situation.” Since 2008, the sides have re-established regular air and sea links after a hiatus of more than 60 years and moved to ease restrictions on investment in each other’s territories. see here national security council

They are now negotiating an ambitious partial free trade agreement which Ma says Taiwan needs to insure it is fully integrated into the world economy.

Su and Ma have a long history together, going back to the late 1960s when both attended Taipei’s prestigious Jianguo High School.

Su served in the late 1990s as head of the Mainland Affairs Council, the Cabinet-level body responsible for relations with China. His time there is probably best remembered for his robust defense of then President Lee Teng-hui’s declaration that Taiwan and China are separate states, a view he now disowns.



  1. Sarah -  February 13, 2015 - 2:58 pm

    My only child was born on 13th. Yesterday, being Friday 13th was his birthday. He is a very lucky man! Both of us do not believe in this superstitious nonsense of 13 being an unlucky number. He makes his own luck.

  2. Driftboy -  June 17, 2014 - 6:15 am


  3. Anonymous1 -  June 16, 2014 - 4:17 am

    Friday and the number 13 are connected because when a person puts two weeks together ([Sunday to Saturday] plus another [Sunday to Saturday] the total amount of days is 14 [days]).
    Well, when calculating one week (starting with Sunday [to Saturday]) is a total of 7 days. An additional Sunday to Saturday will include the numbers 8 to 14. Thus, in the second week the number 13 falls on a Friday.
    This is clearly show when a month starts on a Sunday.

    Their are other reasons why, but, for the convenience of this post I will not list more reasons.

  4. Goldenroya -  June 13, 2014 - 5:17 pm

    As a nurse, the “Q-Word” (to normal people, “quiet”) is absolutely forbidden, as is any statement that might imply that the shift is anything other than chaotic. Anyone accidentally uttering the Q-Word is sure to set off a spate of disasters that range from small to catastrophic (a rush of call lights, say, all the way up to a traumatic dislocation or worse). The only way to mitigate the effects of the dreaded Q-Word is for anyone hearing it to immediately knock on the nearest wood or wood-like substance. The effect is heightened if it happens to be around the time of the full moon, heightened still further if it happens to be Friday the 13th, and exponential if it happens to be a full moon ON Friday the 13th.

    Okay, so the knock-on-wood thing doesn’t actually work, and disasters happen whether anyone has actually SAID the Q-Word or merely thought it. But the notion of everything going to heck in a handbasket during a full moon is absolutely accurate. There is a reason craziness is called “Lunacy” after all (related to “lunar”).

  5. kailey -  December 16, 2013 - 3:08 pm

    when you think there is a superstition and if u do something to prevent it, do u do it or do u not do it.

  6. db -  October 22, 2013 - 1:16 pm

    Where we might “touch wood” Brazilian friends “touch iron”.

    In our family if you break something then there will be two more accidents in the near future. Those accidents can be avoided if you cause two more breaks (for example, if you break a plate then deliberately break two of the fragments to avoid further bad luck.)
    I don’t know the origins of these superstitions.

  7. gr8 -  October 6, 2013 - 12:58 am

    I born on Friday 13th December 1974. My wife also born on 13th (not Friday). And this year my birthday comes on Friday the 13th. I love Friday the 13th. :)

  8. cm -  September 14, 2013 - 6:25 pm

    For a while, I worked (not by choice) for people who happened to be Scientologists. If they happened to bang into a piece of furniture, they had to go back and touch the furniture where they banged themselves, as part of the “healing” process. It was almost superstitious. Very weird.

    As for 13, I was born on the 13th of August, and I love it when it falls on a Friday.

    When we went to the cat shelter to adopt our most recent cats, we gladly took a pair of adolescent brothers, one orange and one black. The shelter folks were thrilled we took the black one, because black cats are very hard to place, they said. Superstitions abound.

  9. Dee -  September 14, 2013 - 3:48 pm

    Humans make errors, as you realize, but remember,
    only God is perfect.

  10. Neha Desai -  September 14, 2013 - 3:13 am

    According to me the number 13 doesn’t matter. It depends on every person either he or she believe in this type of numerical astrology that always affect our lives. I’ve seen many peoples that aren’t daring to drive their vehicle on any highway numbered to 13 !!! lolz … Isn’t that too scary ? I don’t think so..

  11. jan -  September 13, 2013 - 8:33 pm

    No one has brought up that there were 13 people at the last supper and one Judas was the betrayer. This is an often quoted reason for fear of the 13 or 13th person…… and the day of the last supper was definitely a Friday as it had to be over by sunset so we fear Friday 13 as we don’t want to be a betrayer !!(in any way )

  12. David -  September 13, 2013 - 7:10 pm

    IT JUST SAYS ‘Considered’
    How is it spelt wrong

    • Cass -  June 13, 2014 - 2:00 pm


  13. lilly -  September 13, 2013 - 6:47 pm

    really how interesting

  14. Bri -  September 13, 2013 - 1:24 pm

    I have seen some peculiar things today that mostly would freak a normal person out but maybe it’s my freak life

  15. Rob -  September 13, 2013 - 12:27 pm

    I have not read all of the text
    so I have Nothing to add
    concerning the reality
    of certain superstitions

  16. Andrea -  September 13, 2013 - 10:16 am

    Being born on Friday the 13th (1-13-84), I am in the rare category of loving them! They are always very lucky days for me. I get excited when I wake up and look forward to the day and what it’ll bring me.

  17. Balram -  September 13, 2013 - 9:29 am

    It is Jason

  18. ohlaki -  September 13, 2013 - 8:57 am

    did u know that the fear of friday the 13th is PARASKAVEDEKATRIAPHOBIA :D

  19. charles hwiridza -  September 13, 2013 - 8:42 am

    most of these fears and phobias are crosscultural and handed over accross generations. They belong to the domain of taboos, myths and legends. Criticism is not permitted. In this regard they can be seen to be irrational. But they are the attitudinal psyches with no limits which explains why some believers are highly educated.

  20. Cody -  September 13, 2013 - 8:34 am

    I hate this number: Classic post. Thanks.

    Dave: I used to be able to make a slipknot (can’t recall how as this was in my youth and I can barely remember yesterday) as well as many other kinds but I don’t remember if there was a specific number (my guess is it depends on the length of the rope, among other things).

    And… skipping the 13th floor is stupid anyway: whether you go from 12 to 14 or 12 to 13 you’re still on the 13th floor of the building. If someone is that afraid of the number then they know deep down it is still there whether they admit it or not.

  21. msb369 -  September 13, 2013 - 8:02 am

    triskaidekaphobia a fun word for my bank of us less information . Happy Friday all. :-)

  22. Grasha -  September 13, 2013 - 7:24 am


    “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding ; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will direct your paths”.

    Proverbs 3:6

  23. Grasha -  September 13, 2013 - 7:23 am


    “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean “NOT” on your own understanding;in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will direct your paths”

  24. Bogart -  September 13, 2013 - 6:58 am

    Colleen,i like you

  25. Chalonda -  September 13, 2013 - 6:17 am

    You reap what you sow. What comes around goes back around. Sow good things and good things will come back to you. Get the picture.

  26. Richard -  September 13, 2013 - 6:01 am

    When I was a child in the late 1940s and early 1950s, we believed it was unlucky to point at a funeral procession or a cemetery. We had to bite our finger then step on it to break the bad luck spell.

    Our elders forbade us to rock an empty rocking chair. Doing so would be the cause of someone dying. That over 150,000 people die per day never occurred to me at age 10, regardless of the rocking of empty chairs.

    After having my hair cut, my grandmother would not allow me to sweep the hair from the house to outdoors. She said the birds would get it to make nests and cause me to go “crazy.”

    These superstitions are laughable now, but in 1950 we believed them to be real. I never worried much about the number thirteen being unlucky. If I discovered I had $13 rather than 12 or 11, I felt quite fortunate.

  27. Lorren -  September 13, 2013 - 5:30 am

    I’m confused why people are talking about ‘conisidered’. They spelled “considered” right…

  28. T -  September 12, 2013 - 3:45 pm

    People involve science and history with everything that is why we have all these crazy superstitions.
    Because some dumb people believe something a usally smart person says and spreads it around like butter on toast.

  29. Margo -  September 12, 2013 - 3:27 pm

    The superstition surrounding the number 13 is derived from the conquering Christian’s early efforts to vilify their spiritual predecessors. Paganism, a life affirming belief system, acknowledges what we already know about the full moon’s impact upon us. There have been millennia of celebrations and prayerful ritual done at the times of the full and new moon to consciously focus and utilize these times of high energy in most early earth based religions the world over.. Intolerant Christians took what was sacred, the number of full moons annually , 13, and misrepresented them it as something evil and bringing bad luck. Thus adding to the fears of its followers.

    In European Paganism the same was done for the number 666 which is a mathematical variant of another sacred number, 3 which stands for the Ancient triad of the Goddess. Then this number was linked with Satanism which is a REACTION to Christian and illogical since Pagans do not believe in the Devil (a part of Judeo Christian myth). This is easily understood since Paganism is an earlier practice and has its own sacred symbols whereas Satanism exploits and utilizes the opposite OF Christian symbols. Ei an inverted cross, bastardized Latin mass etc. Yet certain biased Christian and much of modern culture still foster the belief that Satanism and Paganism (defined as belief system of people of the country) or Witchcraft (the craft of those who follow the old ways) are interchangeable names for this practice.

  30. I hate this number -  February 4, 2012 - 8:33 pm

    I have a very bad experience of 13.. It has ruined my life.. I open my eyes and see the clock 13 is there.. Most days I see my mobile and its 13% charged.. I graduated from the mrs school on 13th of march and since then I do not have a single day practice.. Being a doctor I am almost on the streets,, it’s just my parents to backup… I happened to start my survival job on 13th of sept. And finally ended up tearing my trapezius.. I mean this sucks everyday no thirteen is becoming more fearful to me.. Now I am afraid of watching the digital clocks or any numbers around and even If I gather some guts to look that turns to be 13.. I will do anything to get this fear off from me.. Is here somebody who can understand my feelings.. I have ruined almost a year because of this freaking number I desperately need help.. I dont know what it means to other it means a big curse for me!!!!

  31. gaaraluvr4eva -  August 31, 2010 - 7:48 am

    I love Friday the 13th! It’s my lucky day. ‘course, I also own a black cat and walk under every ladder i can find. Tempting fate? perhaps…

  32. kootah -  August 28, 2010 - 6:20 pm

    paraskevidekateraphobia is the fear for friday the 13th!

  33. Jim Voris -  August 14, 2010 - 4:12 pm

    In the USAF it is believed that if you have one plane crash it comes in threes so there will be two more. Strangely I have actually witnessed this numerous times. But rationally, the 4th crash becomes the start of the next group of three doesn’t it?

  34. wilhalen -  August 13, 2010 - 6:25 pm

    I love Friday the 13th :)
    And I think it’s silly when buildings ‘omit’ the 13th floor. Just because you call it the ’14th floor’ doesn’t mean it’s still not the 13th.

  35. hannya -  August 13, 2010 - 5:18 pm

    To me, 13 is a relatively portentous number. I am not a Christian so I really careless about that number. I assume that almost everyone has their lucky number. Mine is 8 and numbers that add up to a multiple of 10. What is it that enchants man about numbers? Some mathmaticians get deranged by solving the nature of numbers and other laymen find special meaning, bad or good in numbers.

  36. gibbering man -  August 13, 2010 - 5:01 pm

    A superstition is held in order to prevent or recur something really really bad. Man has an ability of sensing such omen somehow although it is exclusive to science. What to say about the sixth sense? Or intuition. As with Friday the 13th, I watched the movie for the first time and I expected something really really scary but it was a really comedy. I guess I barely watached scary movies before and I only see that type of movie from full-of-blood trailers, and that was not true for the Friday the 13th. I guess horror movies are not so horror as they intend to be, but what is really terrifying people is what I wonder. My answer is to get snubbed and holding the job surrounded by curmudgeon co-workers!

  37. Michael Rumbaugh -  August 13, 2010 - 4:34 pm

    Interesting that we only have an unlucky number that we are afraid of and people will die because of. What about the number 7 does it cancel out number 13 or lose to it? hmmm

  38. Amberlynn -  August 13, 2010 - 3:53 pm

    Whatever the source, it’s certain that, however much we want to believe that rationality informs our decisions, logical and systematic thought has limits. For further proof, simply spend some time with a dictionary. Inconsistencies, contradictions and uncertain origins abound.


  39. tha -  August 13, 2010 - 3:32 pm

    the number 13 isn’t even scary .. LoL who would be silly enough to be superstitious?? hah =D

  40. businesschic -  August 13, 2010 - 2:52 pm

    Wow, that article told me absolutely nothing about why people are afraid of the number 13… absolutely nothing. Sheesh!

  41. tang -  August 13, 2010 - 2:22 pm


  42. DOLLARBILL | BLOGCHI@mayopia.com -  August 13, 2010 - 1:52 pm

    [...] military might — Freedom of all Religion trusting some Generic GOD did Yin and Yang with the 13 Olive Branches in talons for peace and conquered Native American 13 Arrows readiness for fight or… — Even in Communist China where Walmart buys it’s goods — They reopened all the [...]

  43. littlemisslucky -  August 13, 2010 - 1:36 pm

    13 is my family’s lucky number. and we have 2 black cats. in ur face whoever makes up superstitions!

  44. Saf -  August 13, 2010 - 12:41 pm


    My entire family is Muslim, I was born in Tehran, and have been surrounded by Islam for most of my life. While I, myself, am not Muslim, I know that according to the theology, no “Shaytan” (used in the plural) nor Iblis himself have any power to “cause” anything, including the supernatural, only the power to suggest evil.

    I’ve also never heard of spitting three times and turning over in bed. That sounds a little unsanitary, to be honest.

    I’m well aware that Islam is observed in many countries other than my homeland, and I’m sure beliefs and practices vary from place to place, so I’m just curious… what country are you from?

  45. tinker -  August 13, 2010 - 12:13 pm

    Actually, neenee, the Bible does not say the Last Supper was on a Thursday night, nor that Christ died on a Friday. Count those among the things that people think are in the Bible but really aren’t, e.g. Adam and Eve’s apple, the Three Wise Men at the manger, the whale swallowing Jonah, etc. (The kind of fruit isn’t specified, the number of Magi isn’t given and they visited the child in a “house,” and Jonah was swallowed by “a great fish” which “God provided” for the purpose, meaning it might have been a special one-of-a-kind.)

  46. Mark -  August 13, 2010 - 12:11 pm

    I believe luck is karmic, but not in a day that makes it even out over time. If someone has bad luck, someone else gets good luck. its a Zero-sum system, a scale that tips but never evens out.

    So remember, when youve had a really good day, you have just ruined several peoples lives ^_^.

  47. Fred -  August 13, 2010 - 11:21 am

    Who cares? 13th august 1971, on a Friday I was born. And I am one damn luck boy that favours follow me everywhere. So forget the superstition. Its just a number

  48. N'Lupupa -  August 13, 2010 - 10:02 am

    I dont believe in luck, knowing what is opportunity and what isnt is what keeps me going.

  49. Theresa -  August 13, 2010 - 9:59 am

    Wow, you guys are HARSH! Give the guy a break, it’s a typo!

  50. LittleMissLee -  August 13, 2010 - 9:42 am

    Most building complexes don’t have a 13th floor, because of this superstition. (Mainly foreigners are the ones most concerned about 13 being unlucky, in the USA, anyway.) For example, the last beach condominium my family stayed at was on the 12th floor, and the floor above it was the 14th floor. Such a noticeable gap, though!!! LOL, my 13 year old sister was very insulted.

  51. TRISKAIDEKAPHOBIA | BLOGCHI@mayopia.com -  August 13, 2010 - 9:26 am

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  52. Lauren -  August 13, 2010 - 9:20 am

    I’m a Muslim by the way…

  53. Lauren -  August 13, 2010 - 9:18 am

    I’m amazed at the hot word blog. I have been reading it for awhile, and it always seems just kind of hashed together, like it’s some 10th priority mini project. Disappointing really. Anyway, I do like the word choices…

    Personally, Friday the 13th doesn’t bother me at all. Well, I do feel an inkling of foreboding, but logically speaking I know it’s completely unfounded. So I proceed with my life normally. Besides, there is no such thing as “good luck” or “bad luck” anyway. In my religion, everything is seen as a challenge, a punishment, or a reward from God. Quite simple really. :) Like every time I stub my toe or bump my shin, I say “I probably deserved that.” And everything supernatural, including bad dreams, is caused by Shaytan (devils). Speaking of which, when you do see a bad dream, you’re supposed to spit to your left three times and then turn over on your other side (and “seek refuge in God”).
    @Oleg Temple: I think the “spitting 3 times over your left shoulder to dissuade evil spirits” may have transferred from my religion. I have no proof or anything; it’s just a thought.


  54. Monica -  August 13, 2010 - 9:06 am

    Another possible origin of the fear behind the number 13 stems from Christianity. The thirteenth apostle, Judas, betrayed Jesus. Hence, unlucky number thirteen.

    • Me -  June 16, 2014 - 6:06 pm

      Ummm…there were only 12 apostles.

  55. neenee -  August 13, 2010 - 9:03 am

    Yes BadWolf,
    Their were 13 people in the room at the Last Supper, but one was a betrayer – Judas. According to scripture, that was on a Thursday night, Judas, the 13th person left and by Friday morning had betrayed Jesus.

  56. purple unicorn -  August 13, 2010 - 8:43 am

    It is also my Birthday. Born on a Friday the 13th! I have always had GREAT luck on Friday 13ths.

  57. Laura -  August 13, 2010 - 8:39 am

    It’s lucky for my mum! She passed her driving test with the head instructor on that day and went into labour with me (not on the same day I might add!). I held out and was born on Saturday 14th though which is a shame as having a birthday on Friday 13th would have been amusing…

  58. BadWolf -  August 13, 2010 - 8:31 am

    Pehaps 13 means bad luck because, for christians, 13 remember the Sacred Supper:12 Apostles and Jesus Christ.

  59. meee -  August 13, 2010 - 8:21 am

    is this reallyy truee?

  60. Jimmy Stewart -  August 13, 2010 - 8:15 am

    Did you know it’s also Alfred Hitchcock’s Birthday? Double Trouble!!!

  61. Waldo Pepper -  August 13, 2010 - 8:02 am

    I think it’s especially unlucky because this is the day that Jason Voorhees stalks the campgrounds of Crystal Lake. I mean, really!

  62. liZlyphe9 -  August 13, 2010 - 7:45 am

    I personally am extremely superstitous so I really don’t like when there’s a Friday the 13th. Also are there any superstitions about number 11? Anytime I see too much of 11, something bad always happens.

  63. Bob -  August 13, 2010 - 7:45 am

    Conisidered ????????? WTH???

  64. liZlyphe9 -  August 13, 2010 - 7:44 am

    I personally am extremely superstitous so I really don’t like when there’s a Friday the 13th. Also are ther any superstitions about number 11?

  65. HFS -  August 13, 2010 - 7:41 am

    And on the second try it does pop up. Odd.

  66. HFS -  August 13, 2010 - 7:40 am

    A special article about Triskaidekaphobia on dictionary.com’s Hot Word Blog, yet dictionary.com doesn’t recognize the word or supply a definition. Maybe they should look up the word “ironic.”

  67. Lachman -  August 13, 2010 - 7:39 am

    para nosotros, los Espanyoles, viernes el trece no dice nada, para nosotros es ‘martes y trece, no te cases ni te embarques!’
    For us Spaniards, it’s more Tuesday the 13th- don’t get married nor go on a trip. Friday the 13th means nothing.

  68. Jelennuie -  August 13, 2010 - 7:36 am

    Actually, I suffer from friggatriskaidekaphilia! But I’m not at all superstitious. That would be bad luck. (:

  69. JT -  August 13, 2010 - 7:27 am

    Looks like a typo in the Blog. The title says “the fear the No. 13.”. Sounds like it should say “the fear of the No. 13.”.

  70. Saf -  August 13, 2010 - 7:09 am

    I always thought it was kind of funny and quirky how people rush to say “Jinx!” after saying the same word or phrase simultaneously with someone else, as if there’s a mass of bad luck seeping through some kind of rift created by the collision of the two words, just looking for some poor, jinxed person to harrow.

    Is the idea to jinx the other person before they can jinx you? Or is “jinx” used in a different context here than as in, “hex?”

  71. David E. -  August 13, 2010 - 6:48 am

    I’m not triskaidekaphobic! I’m not afrai-



  72. Rich Durst -  August 13, 2010 - 6:12 am

    Gotta say I’m rather disappointed with this one. Didn’t actually go into the possible reasons for the superstition, only glossed over a list. Also, left out the word “of” in the title: “the fear -of- the No. 13.”

  73. Luanne -  August 13, 2010 - 6:01 am


    Triskaidekaphobia is “the fear the No. 13.” Are you aware of why today is conisidered unlucky, anyhow?
    August 13, 2010

  74. Treyos -  August 13, 2010 - 5:55 am

    Actually, I’ve always considered Friday the 13th to be a good thing; I usually have remarkably good days!

  75. Parch -  August 13, 2010 - 5:48 am

    My wife and her family all swear that deaths come in 3′s. if a celebrity dies, brace yourself for the next 2. if a family members die, they start evaluating the health of others to determine who they need to spend some time with. it’s really morbid.

  76. toni -  August 13, 2010 - 5:33 am

    Please spell considered correctly in your headline.

  77. John -  August 13, 2010 - 5:27 am

    Friday the 13th got its spooky mojo from the fact that the Knights Templar were slaughtered by papal decree on Friday, October 13, 1307. I’m surprised not to see something about that in your explanation.

  78. kelsey -  August 13, 2010 - 5:27 am

    I have never believed in bad luck or superstition. I think things happen to you when you expect them to or when you are afraid of them. But it is interesting to learn about how Friday the 13th is bad luck. It is amazing how people are afraid of something and they don’t even know why.

  79. Colleen -  August 13, 2010 - 5:22 am

    OOPS dictionary site, check your spelling…..conisidered….

  80. Chintan -  August 13, 2010 - 5:14 am

    CONISIDERED??? Wonder what does that mean..!!! ;o)

  81. hatena -  August 13, 2010 - 5:12 am

    What about xenoglossy, which “is a paranormal phenomenon in which a person is able to speak a language that he or she has never heard, read, or been exposed to in any way” according to the previous hot word blog. I have heard some esoteric practice which goes beyond logical sphere but it is esoteric therefore no one talks about it too much in puclic.

  82. ericreator -  August 13, 2010 - 4:42 am

    Haitians and many other people around the world fear that taking their picture or video devalues their soul by creating a new image of it. The same goes with breaking mirrors, if you break the mirror you break a container, an instance, of your soul. That is often an obstacle for cultural documentary makers and photographers, like those at http://kozeayiti.org

    I often find myself walking under ladders at my job nowadays and I gotta say, if I have bad luck, then I have a whole lot of good luck keeping me well.

    I wonder if this is why there’s no 13th hour? Does dictionary.com have a database of phobias?

  83. Oleg Temple -  August 13, 2010 - 4:18 am

    Quite a few interesting beliefs and taboos still haunt Eastern Europe. Most of these are adhered to automatically, despite the fact that no one remembers where they come from or what they are about. For instance: never say “thank you” for medicine or it won’t work; never shake hands across a threshold; we all know the general “touch/knock wood” to deter the bad luck of running into a mishap just mentioned, a form of the “never say never” proverb, I guess. In these parts, an alternative to touching/knocking on wood is throwing a pinch of salt behind you or spitting 3 times over your left shoulder to dissuade evil spirits – the former is somewhat of a contradiction on how it is unlucky to spill salt. We all know the one about attracting years of bad luck equal to the pieces of the mirror one has shattered. Some superstition is specific to Latvia as the country’s roots lie in pagan beliefs as can be seen from its folklore symbols here: http://www.cornerstonesworld.com/article/Latvian-Folk-Costumes . The summer solstice or Ligo holds a specific significance for the Latvian people and in many ways even trumps Christmas as a National holiday. Even in contemporary Latvia it is widely believed that couples can temper their love by jumping together over a Ligo bonfire and that he who sleeps on Ligo night (23-24th of June) will be sleepy and unlucky until the next Ligo. Following the midnight celebrations, couples generally part company with their friends and sneak off together in the perpetual twilight into the musky pre-summer forest “to seek out the magic glowing fern”, the key to luck and prosperity.

  84. Dave -  August 13, 2010 - 3:31 am

    I heard that the no. 13 was unlucky as the hangman’s noose had 13 turns of rope in the slipknot. One of my early ancestors was a hangman, but I can’t tie the knot myself ;-)

  85. Matt -  August 13, 2010 - 3:25 am

    Thanks, but on a site named Dictionary.com, the typo in the headline is quite amusing ;)

    Consider ‘considered’ instead of ‘conisidered’!

  86. can't tell -  August 13, 2010 - 2:36 am

    so it’s like this ah oooo

  87. Chrisanthi -  August 13, 2010 - 1:51 am

    It is a Greek word.
    It derives from the words :
    Tris – (three)
    kai – (and)
    deka- (ten)
    phobias- (fears)

  88. karthigesu -  August 13, 2010 - 1:27 am

    business losses and gains are made not only on the 13th but right through out the year. Onlylosses made on this day are made public and not the great gains

  89. Hanzzeh -  August 13, 2010 - 12:32 am

    And could the misspelling of the word “considered” be accidental or purposely done?


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