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Why is Friday 13th considered unlucky?

A fear of Friday the 13th is called paraskevidekatriaphobia.

The term is based on the Greek words:

paraskevi - Friday dekatria - thirteen -phobia - indicates fear

The belief that Friday 13th is an unlucky day is one of the most widely know superstitions in Britain today.

The superstition surrounding Friday the 13th is actually a combination of two separate fears — the fear of the number 13, called triskaidekaphobia, and the fear of Fridays.

Unlucky 13

It is unlucky to have thirteen at a table or in a company. The number 13, in the Christian faith, is the number of people at the Last Supper, with the 13th guest at the table being the traitor, Judas.

The Last Supper

The unlucky number 13 is often left out when numbering houses, flats and hotel rooms.


  • Fridays have been considered an unlucky day since the medieval times.
  • It is generally considered bad luck to start anything on a Friday - a new journey, job, marriage, business project, giving birth, moving house
  • It is unlucky to cut fingernails and hair on a Friday.
  • In Britain, Friday was the conventional day for public hangings, and there were supposedly 13 steps leading up to the noose!

Friday is consider an unlucky day in some religions

  • Muslims tout Friday as the day Allah created Adam

  • Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit on a Friday and later died on a Friday.

  • Christians consider Friday as the day on which Christ was crucified by the Romans.

More Superstitions

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© Copyright Mandy Barrow 2013

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Mandy is the creator of the Woodlands Resources section of the Woodlands Junior website. 
The two websites and are the new homes for the Woodlands Resources.

Mandy left Woodlands in 2003 to work in Kent schools as an ICT Consulatant. 
She now teaches computers at The Granville School and St. John's Primary School in Sevenoaks Kent.