How many times have you seen a black cat and avoided crossing its path or took a different route? Superstitions have a funny way of seeping into our subconscious.
This superstition of a black cat bringing bad luck is one of the oldest that has endured over centuries. If one crosses paths with a black cat, they expect unfortunate events and bad luck to befall them.
This is also why black felines have become one of the unofficial Halloween mascots. But, how true is this belief? because Let’s find out.
So, Do Black Cats Bring Bad Luck?
Cats have established an exceptional reputation for themselves. They are known to be independent, aloof, and will pay attention to you on their terms, but they do not bring bad luck.
This superstition stems from different cultures and beliefs across the world but has no basis in any logic or science.
The Origin of the Black Cat Superstition
Domesticated over 10,000 years ago, cats were worshiped in Egypt. They were showered with jewelry because of their natural grace, beauty, and superb hunting skills when it comes to snakes and vermin.
In Greece, cats were associated with the goddess of magic, moon, sorcery, and witchcraft. Hecate has a cat for a pet and as a familiar, which is a supernatural creature always accompanying a witch.
So, aside from witchcraft, cats were also linked to the devils and were seen in a negative light by early religions. Cats were perceived as animals of defiance because, unlike dogs, cats don’t fawn over humans.
At some point, this negative opinion of cats narrowed down to the black cats, although there is no real reason for this. It is possible that this was because black cats are better at hunting as they can’t be seen at night.
Other Superstitions Surrounding Black Cats
- During the Middle Ages in Europe, black cats doubled in population. People started fearing them and considered them pests.
- Cats are crepuscular animals and love to roam at night. But, their “glowing” eyes and agile movements make them look like culprits and witnesses of unpleasant happenings.
- If a black cat walks into the room of a sick person and that person later dies, people blame the black cat and its “powers.”
- A black cat walking towards or beside you means the devil protects you.
- According to Norse mythology, the goddess of fertility and love, Freya, has a chariot drawn by two black cats that can shapeshift into two black, swift horses when possessed by the devil. After seven years, the cats were turned into witches disguised as black cats as a reward for their loyalty.
Positive Superstitions About Black Cats
Surprisingly enough, there are as many good superstitions about black cats as bad ones. They are even considered bearers of good luck and success.
- In Britain, the fishermen’s wives hold on to the promise of their husbands’ safe return if they have a black cat in their home.
- On a theater opening night, if a black cat is present among the audience or within the perimeter of the venue, it indicates that the play will be successful.
- In France, it is believed that owners who treat their black cats well will always have Lady Luck on their side.
- Black cats are also believed to influence good weather and a safe sail, as believed by English sailors.
Luck is not something that is brought by others, certainly not by a cat, regardless of whether it’s black or any other color. These lingering superstitions are traced to a time when people just didn’t have the information we do today. So, despite all the bad stories you may have heard, it’s about time we shower black cats with all the love they deserve!