Why is Friday the 13th considered an unlucky day? Let's take a peek into the history of this dreadful date.
Origins of the myth can be tracked back to the arrest and dreadful execution of the Knights Templar in the Middle Ages.
Another Friday the 13th has arrived this week – the same week the deadly CoronaVirus shook the Football industry.
With the lethal coronavirus currently skimming the globe, the ominous date’s recurrence feels exactly on cue for the doom-and-gloom aura of the moment.
The myth surrounding Friday the 13th is thought to have originated from the Last Supper, which was observed by 13 people – Jesus Christ and his 12 disciples – on Maundy Thursday, the night before his crucifixion by Roman soldiers on Good Friday.
The number 13 is therefore linked with Judas Iscariot, Christ’s traitor, and is deemed as imperfect when compared with 12, which depicts the number of months in a year.
The coalition of the day and date has also been tracked back to King Philip IV of France arresting hundreds of Knights Templar on Friday 13 October 1307
The Catholic crusaders were imprisoned, under pressure from Pope Clement V, over testimonies made by an excommunicated retired member that new recruits to the order were being compelled to spit on the cross, reject Christ and engage in sodomy acts during initiation rites.
The claims, apparently totally without basis, were a convenient pretext for Philip to persecute the wealthy order and forsake debts he owed them following war with England.
Charged with moral and financial corruption and revering false idols, often following confessions attained under torture, many of the knights were later burnt to death at the stake in Paris.
The Grand Master of the Order, Jacques de Molay, faced the flames in front of Notre Dame Cathedral and is said to have placed a curse on those who persecuted its members: “God knows who is wrong and has sinned. Soon a calamity will occur to those who have condemned us to death.”
The events commenced by the holy warriors’ arrest, according to tradition, guaranteed every following Friday the 13th meant bad luck to one and all, De Molay’s hex flowing through the ages.
An outrageous fear of the date and day is known as paraskevidekatriaphobia.
It is Tuesday the 13th that frightens people in Spanish-speaking countries and in Greece. In Italy, it is Friday the 17th that frightens people.
Other popular indicators of bad luck include a black cat crossing your path, breaking a mirror, walking under a ladder, opening an umbrella indoors and saying the name of Shakespeare’s Macbeth in a theatre.
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