Do you have friggatriskaidekaphobia? That’s the fear of Friday the 13th. Frigga is the Norse goddess for whom Friday is named and triskaidekaphobia means the fear of the number 13, but did you know that the number 13 is not really unlucky and Friday the 13th is not really cursed?
The superstitions surrounding Friday the 13th did not arise until 1869, according to folklorists. There is a much more recent idea that it was connected to the Knights Templar but it’s probably a modern invention that has no real basis in historical fact.
From Wikipedia regarding theories on the origins of Friday the 13th:
In numerology, the number twelve is considered the number of completeness, as reflected in the twelve months of the year, twelve hours of the clock, twelve gods of Olympus, twelve tribes of Israel, twelve Apostles of Jesus, the 12 Descendants of Muhammad Imams, etc., whereas the number thirteen was considered irregular, transgressing this completeness. There is also a superstition, thought by some to derive from the Last Supper or a Norse myth, that having thirteen people seated at a table will result in the death of one of the diners.
Friday has been considered an unlucky day at least since the 14th century’s The Canterbury Tales, and many other professions have regarded Friday as an unlucky day to undertake journeys or begin new projects. Black Friday has been associated with stock market crashes and other disasters since the 1800s. It has also been suggested that Friday has been considered an unlucky day because, according to Christian scripture and tradition, Jesus was crucified on a Friday.
One author, noting that references are all but nonexistent before 1907 but frequently seen thereafter, has argued that its popularity derives from the publication that year of Thomas W. Lawson’s popular novel Friday, the Thirteenth, in which an unscrupulous broker takes advantage of the superstition to create a Wall Street panic on a Friday the 13th. Records of the superstition are rarely found before the 20th century, when it became extremely common.
Since there is no specific event to inspire the Friday the 13th superstition, it is interesting that somewhere between 17 and 20 million Americans are fearful of that day. Some people won’t even go to work, others won’t eat out, and many won’t even set it as a wedding date.
How do you react to Friday the 13th?