6 Very Superstitious Beliefs About Black Cats January 22 2017, 15 Comments
The writing on the wall says black cats are luckier than you think.
If a black cat crosses your path, what would you do? I’d feel #blessed that I got a chance to see a cat today.
I might also "accidentally" smuggle said cat to work in my purse (you know, the usual). I mean, I could probably get away with it with a purse like this Bombay cat purse. “What? Of course my purse isn’t meowing. It just looks like a cat, Harold.”
As cute as black cats are, unfortunately there is still a prevalent belief in the United States and some European countries that they are omens of misfortune; If a black cat crosses your path, you’re in for bad luck that day. I don't know about you, but if I saw a face this precious, it'd only make my day better!
Black cats’ bad rep stems from the Middle Ages, when Pope Gregory IX decided that black cats were used to worship the devil and saw them as evil creatures.
The vilification of black cats began to grow, spreading to countries like England and eventually to America, as the Puritans settled in New England. During the infamous Salem Witch Trials in the late 1600s, black cats were thought to be witches’ familiars. The Puritans believed that witches could actually shape-shift into black cats!
Believe it or not, though, black cats are actually surrounded by myths of prosperity, luck and even love.
Credit: About Postcards
In Scotland, to have a black cat visit your house means you’re headed for prosperity, my friend. I’d sell my left eyebrow to win a jackpot (It’s a big sacrifice, okay? Even if my left eyebrow is the “ugly” sister ... )
It’s not every day that a black cat hangs out on my stoop, though. I’ll have to settle for a lucky cat charm. These Black Jack Cat Earrings are perfect for bringing on some of that good luck to win big. Maybe I will buy that lotto ticket …
Is someone you know getting married? In the English Midlands, giving a bride the gift of a black cat was thought to bring her good luck. We know from experience here at Meowingtons that it’s not so easy to gift-wrap a cat.
Sailors and their wives saw black cats as guardians of safe passage. While their husbands were out at sea, women would take home black cats, thinking that they would bring their loved ones home safe. These inky felines were seen as harbingers of such good fortune that they became a hot commodity, and some sailors couldn’t even afford to buy them. Cats were even seen as good-luck charms if they were brought on ships and approached a sailor.
Winston Churchill and Blackie, Ship’s Cat / Wikimedia
If you’re a seafaring adventurer searching for your white whale (or even just going out to lunch), be sure to keep your lucky black cat close at hand with this fabulous Clowder Cat Scarf or Kira Cat Travel Pillow. You’ll need something to keep you as warm and cozy as cuddling a real cat.
In some traditions in Southern France, black cats were sometimes referred to as "matagots," roughly translating to "magician cat." Matagots were black cats who would bring the owners good fortune if they were given love and respect and fed first at every meal.
If my cat could talk, I'm sure he'd agree that the French were definitely onto something with that idea.
If you've got a magic cat of your own at home, treat that fine feline of yours to a delicious Ciao Cat Treat and he won't even want a bite of your dinner!
Do you have a black cat of your own? What makes them special to you?
Cortney Licata - Featured Image by Flickr / Laura D'Alessandro