Triskaidekaphobia – Fear of the number 13, a word which was coined in 1911. The superstitious sufferers of triskaidekaphobia try to avoid bad luck by keeping away from anything numbered or labelled thirteen. As a result, companies and manufacturers use another way of numbering or labeling to avoid the number, with hotels and tall buildings being conspicuous examples (Thirteenth floor). It’s also considered to be unlucky to have thirteen guests at a table. Friday the 13th has been considered the unluckiest day of the month.
The hangman’s noose traditionally has 13 turns. Anything less would not snap a neck.
At the Last Supper there were 13 people around the table, counting Christ and the 12 apostles.
On Friday 13 October, 1307, King Philip IV of France ordered the arrest of the Knights Templar.
A year which contained 13 full moons instead of 12 posed problems for the monks who were in charge of the calendars. This was considered a very unfortunate circumstance, especially by the monks who had charge of the calendar of thirteen months for that year, and it upset the regular arrangement of church festivals. For this reason thirteen came to be considered an unlucky number.
Many successful sports figures have worn the number 13. Ozzie Guillen, Alex Rodriguez, Babe Ruth, Dan Marino, Wilt Chamberlin, Shaquille O’Neal, to name a few.
In Italy and China, 13 is also considered to be a lucky number.
Some people even have 13 tattooed onto them to represent the lucky number.
Colgate University also considers 13 to be a lucky number. They were founded in 1819 by 13 men with 13 dollars, 13 prayers and 13 articles. (To this day, members of the Colgate community consider the number 13 a good omen.) In fact, the campus address is 13 Oak Drive in Hamilton, New York, and the male a cappella group is called the Colgate 13
The American flag has 13 stripes in honor of the first 13 colonies.
Apollo 13 was a NASA Moon mission famous for being a “successful failure” in that while the crew were unable to land on the Moon as planned due to a technical malfunction, they were returned safely home
In Judaism, 13 signifies the age at which a boy matures and becomes a Bar Mitzvah i.e., a full member of the Jewish faith (is qualified to be counted as a member of Minyan).
Here’s wishing us all a Happy and Lucky 2013