Why Are Black Cats Considered to Be Bad Luck?

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Black cats are as beautiful and cuddly as any other cat of any origin. But they have been demonized for centuries and are considered to bring bad luck. It is regarded as unlucky if a black cat crosses your path. This superstitious belief has been around for centuries, almost all around the world. But why are these beautiful felines considered to bring bad luck?

The story behind black cats bringing bad luck

There are several stories about why a black cat is bad luck. In Ancient Egypt, cats were worshipped, and a person caught killing a cat had to face the death penalty. But this is not the reason they are considered bad luck. Like any other cats, black cats were loved and worshipped, so much that even the Ancient Egyptian god of cats, Bastet is portrayed as a woman with the head of a black cat. These beautiful felines had nothing to worry about. A legend called Cat Sìth existed in the Celtic mythology. It is said that Cat Sìth resembled a large black cat with a white spot on its chest. According to Celtic mythology, these cats could steal a person’s soul by passing over a corpse before the burial. They stole the soul before it was claimed by God, and hence were considered bad luck.

In the middle Ages in Americas and Europe, cats were linked to the supernatural evil, the witches due to their nocturnal nature. Of all the colors in the world, the black cats suffered the most as in Christian cultures; black is a symbol of danger, and white is generally a symbol of goodness. Many superstitious beliefs were revolving around black cats which included

  • Witches turned into black cats at night
  • Witches were reborn as black cats
  • Black cats aided witches in their witchcraft
  • They were supernatural servants of witches as they roamed at night

The superstition and fear were so strong that women who were considered as witches were burned along with their cat.

The origin of the ‘black cat is bad luck’ myth is still unknown. These felines just got a bad reputation because they are sneaky, as any other cats are. Spotting a black cat at night is extremely difficult, and it is obvious that in a pitch-black night, two floating brightly lit eyes can give anyone a heart attack. Superstitions revolve around such unfortunate incidents, and innocent lives are made victims of unnatural beliefs. Fortunately, black cats survived the superstition and marched up to the 21st century.

In many cultures, black cats are considered good luck. In Scotland, it is a sign of prosperity; in France, they are referred to as matagots and considered good luck; in England, they are presented to a bride as a sign of good luck; in Japan, a black cat crossing your path is a sign that you will be in control of your luck. Black cats indeed have magical powers of bringing good luck to anyone who believes in it.