The Emerald Isle is a land of ancient mysticism and Celtic mythology; these are five strange Irish superstitions.
The Irish are a superstitious bunch. Whether it is bad luck or good, there are a certain set of superstitions that are passed down from generation to generation. And even without realising it, Irish people follow these superstitions with absolute care and consideration.
If you’re lucky enough to be on the island of Ireland, you’re bound to cross paths with at least one of these five strange Irish superstitions.
Whether you’re a sceptic or superstitious being, it’s hard not to become engrossed in all these urban legends claim to cause. Read on to learn more about Irish superstitions.
5. Luck of the Irish – for those in search of their pot of gold
The ‘luck of the Irish‘ – a term that is known across the globe. Its origins are, however, disputed.
Edward T. O’Donnell – an Associate Professor of History at Holy Cross College in Dublin – argues that it is an age-old miner expression. According to O’Donnell, in the 19th-century, many successful miners were of Irish descent – hence, the ‘luck of the Irish’.
Others say that the term stems back to Irish mythology and relates to the urban legend of the leprechaun. In ancient folklore, these little men, clad in green suits – often cobblers, with a mischievous disposition – would hide their pots of gold at the end of a rainbow.
For those less keep to jump on the superstitious bandwagon, netent casino sites have slots such as Irish Pot Luck. There, you may be more successful in your attempt to claim the gold!
4. Itchy nose – the one that heralds a fight
Many will be familiar with this strange superstition in Irish culture; to have an itchy nose means that an argument is on the horizon. The simple solution to ward off this impending row is to have someone slap you on the back of your hand.
Other common methods used to avoid the fight to come include shaking hands with another person or receiving a light punch on the arm.
Whether you’re a laid-back sceptic or full-blown superstitious person, it is hard to avoid this carry-on when in Ireland.
3. Break glass – seven years bad luck
This is another superstition that has seemed to have saturated cultures around the world.
It first was conceived in Roman times and became widespread throughout the ages. For centuries in Ireland, it has been one of the leading superstitions and is taken with complete seriousness.
This superstition follows a simple notion: if you break a looking glass or mirror, you’re in for seven years of bad luck.
The reason behind this superstition is that the Romans thought that when you looked in a mirror, you were, in fact, looking into your soul. And, should you damage that mirror, you are actually damaging your soul!
2. Magpies – one for sorrow, two for joy
The observance of magpie birds and what they mean is yet another strange Irish superstition that must be mentioned.
Magpies are widespread in Ireland. With black and white feathers, they are distinct and ever-present, populating telephone lines and rooftops across the Emerald Isle. But did you know their presence, and more so, the number of them present means something?
According to this nursery rhyme, if you see the following amount of magpies, your fate will be revealed:
One for sorrow,
Two for joy,
Three for a girl,
Four for a boy,
Five for silver,
Six for gold,
Seven for a secret never to be told
1. Bird poo – the strange superstition for good luck
The final entry on our round-up of five strange Irish superstitions has got to be the superstition surrounding bird poo. Or, to be more specific, when a bird poos on you.
For the majority of people, this sounds like an awful affair, and one they would rather not experience. For the Irish, however, this sounds too good to be true. According to the Irish, when a bird poos on you, this is, in fact, good luck.
It is said that this superstition originated in Russia, although its unfaltering popularity in Ireland earns itself the title of one of the top five strange Irish superstitions.