Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The Number 13: Lucky or Unlucky

The number 13 has been surrounded by superstition for centuries as an unlucky number in many cultures, but believe it or not, it is also considered lucky. Some cultures attribute the beginning of the superstition originating with the Last Supper. It is speculated that the 13th apostle who sat down at the table with Jesus was Judas who was the apostle who later betrayed him. There are many interesting and mysterious facts and stories regarding the number 13. Here are a few:

 Lucky Number 13

  • Apparitions of the Virgin Mary appeared 13 times over 6 consecutive months in Fatima.
  • Thirteen is the age a boy and girl mature in the Jewish faith. Boys celebrate their Bar Mitzvah and girls celebrate their Bat Mitzvah.
  • Several successful sports figures wore number thirteen. These included Alex Rodriguez, Dan Marino, Wilt Chamberlin, and Shaquille O’Neal.

  • Colgate University was founded in 1819 by 13 men with 13 dollars. The University established 13 articles and is located at 13 Oak Drive in Hamilton, New York.

  • There are 13 guns in a gun saluted to honor U.S. Army, Air Force and Marine Corps Generals and Navy and Coast Guard Rear Admirals Upper Half.
  • Thirteen loaves make a Baker’s Dozen.

Unlucky Number 13

  • Friday the 13th is considered unlucky because it combines the unlucky day of the week with the unlucky number 13.
  • Another reason why Friday the 13th is viewed as unlucky is because on Friday, October 13, 1307 the last 13 Knights of Templar were ordered to be arrested and burned alive by Philip IV of France.

  • Apollo 13 was launched April 11, 1970 at 13:13 CST. The explosion in the oxygen tanks occurred on April 13, 1970. Although 13 does appear unlucky to the flight mission, all three astronauts returned safely to Earth.

  • Serial killers Jack the Ripper, John Wayne Gacy, Charles Manson, Jeffrey Dahmer, and Theodore (Ted) Bundy all have 13 letters in their name.

  • There are 13 knots in a hangman’s noose.
  • There are 13 steps to the gallows.

  • The guillotine falls 13 feet.
  • Lizzy Borden allegedly spoke only 13 words at her trial for killing her parents. She was acquitted.

  • The driver of Princess Diana’s care hit pillar 13 at Place de L’Alma when she was killed in Paris, France.

  • The first person to die in a car accident was killed in New York City on September 13, 1899.

Whether you view 13 as a lucky or unlucky number, it’s important to remember that it will be whatever you focus your energy on believing. Remember, thoughts are powerful.

Written by: Kerri L. Schultz

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