Why the number 13 is thought to be unlucky

13 is meant to be the unluckiest number. It’s well-established throughout history and culture as the number of doom and gloom. Very superstitious – or religious – people still believe in its power today. You may have noticed that these stories tend to follow a similar theme, and that’s important. But why? I’m going to tell you some stories about why this might just be the case…
1. There were 13 people at Jesus’s last supper
Judas Iscariot was supposedly the 13th man to take a seat at Jesus’s last supper before he was crucified. As we all know, Judas was the man who betrayed Jesus
2. A similar Norse banquet (involving Loki)
The gods in Asgard hold a banquet with 12 people invited and Loki gate-crashes the party and takes a 13th seat, and kills another god whilst he’s there. As you can see, this story is very similar to Jesus being crucified, and Judas being the 13th man. For some reason, when banquets like this occur, there’s usually someone who dies (see The Knights Templar point).
3. Sleeping Beauty
In “Little Briar-Rose” by the Brothers Grimm, there are 12 fairies invited to the christening of Sleeping Beauty – and it’s the evil 13th one who curses the baby. By then, 13 was already established as an unlucky number, but the bad fortune is doubled even more because of the 13 months in the lunar year, which was associated with witchcraft and therefore bad luck.
4. Apollo 13
This was the only mission to the moon that failed. To add insult to injury, the disaster happened on April 13th. The story goes that, about 200,000 miles away from Earth, an oxygen tank exploded, setting some wires alight and creating a great deal of pressure. It also immortalized the phrase “Houston, we’ve had a problem here” to be quoted in various forms in future years.
5. It’s an uneven number
In numerology, all numbers have a meaning and significance. This school of thought dates back to Pythagoras in Ancient Greek times, and it was all about the meaning of numbers to letters and how they related to the real world i.e. 3 symbolizes beginning, middle end, seven is the days of the week, etc. The number 12 is supposed to be perfect number – which is why we have 12 hours, 12 disciples, 12 days of Christmas, 12 months of the year, 12 signs of the Zodiac – in numerology. So, by adding 13, the balance is upset by an extra digit. Moreover, the number 13 is an odd number, thus disrupting the balance of harmony – not just in the divine but the real world too (having 13 seats, for instance).
6. The start of the teenage years?
Nobody likes turning 13; you get zits, rejected by your crush, emotional and your life starts unravelling. Plus school seems to be a challenge. Or at least that’s how it feels!
7. Friday 13th
Drastic events from The Knights Templar to the bombing of Buckingham Palace have happened on this day. The Knights Templar murder happened on Friday 13th October (in 1307 too!), and Jesus was rumoured to be crucified on April 13th. So, ever since Friday the 13th has been a day for warding off the Evil Eye, wearing amulets and not opening an umbrella indoors (which is just plain silly anyway).
8. 13 steps to the gallows
Ah yes, the fatal final moments where you were going to be hung in front of an eager crowd. 13 is symbolically used to represent rebirth, and 12 is the end of a life cycle. So, perhaps by dying, you will be reborn again to start a new life (or go to the afterlife, whichever you think is most appropriate”.


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