Want to know all about the number 13? Check out the details below.

13 (thirteenfacts and legends

It is the number after 12 and before 14.

It is the first of the teens – the numbers 13 to 19 – the teenage years.

In lunar-solar calendars (there are approximately 12.41 lunations per solar year and hence 12 “true months” plus a smaller thirteenth month). This can be seen, for example, in the “Twelve Days of Christmas” of Western European tradition.

13 (thirteenlegends

Legend has it if 13 people sit down to dinner together, one will die within the year.

If you have 13 letters in your name, you will have the devil’s luck (Jack the Ripper, Charles Manson, Jeffrey Dahmer, Theodore Bundy and Albert De Salvo all have 13 letters in their names).

There are 13 witches in a coven.

Unlucky 13

The number 13 is considered unlucky number in some countries. It has a specifically recognized phobia called Triskaidekaphobia. The superstitious sufferers of triskaidekaphobia try to avoid bad luck by keeping away from anything numbered or labelled thirteen. Many companies and manufacturers use another way of numbering or labelling to avoid the number 13. Hotels and tall buildings are conspicuous examples in avioding labelling a thirteenth floor. Many housing developers also avoid numbering a house 13 to avoid loss of sales due to superstitious potential buyers. Many cities do not have a 13th Street or a 13th Avenue.

It is  considered unlucky to have thirteen guests at a table.

Friday the 13th is often considered the unluckiest day of the month.

There are a number of theories behind the cause of the association between thirteen and bad luck, but none of them have been accepted as likely.

The Last Supper

At Jesus Christ’s last supper, there were thirteen people around the table, counting Christ and the twelve apostles.

Knights Templar

On Friday  13 October 1307 King Philip IV of France ordered the arrest of the Knights Templar.

Full moons

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.” However, in a typical century, there will be about 37 years which have 13 full moons compared with 63 years with 12 full moons, and typically every third or fourth year would have 13 full moons, making it a reasonably common occurrence, unlikely to tax monks any more than leap years.

A repressed lunar cult

In ancient cultures, the number 13 represented femininity, because it corresponded to the number of lunar (menstrual) cycles in a year (13 x 28 = 364 days). The theory is that, as the solar calendar triumphed over the lunar, the number thirteen became anathema.

Lucky 13

Many successful sports figures have worn the number 13 on their shirts.

In Italy, 13 is also considered to be a lucky number.

Some people even have 13 tattooed onto them to represent the lucky number.



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Halloween 13: 13 thirteen