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Horseshoes are lucky too!

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Throughout Germany the belief obtains that a horseshoe found on the road, and nailed on the threshold of a house with the points directed outward, is a mighty protection not only against hags and fiends, but also against fire and lightning; but, reversed, it brings misfortune.

In eastern Pennsylvania, however, even in recent times, the horse-shoe is often placed with the prongs pointing inward, so that the luck may be spilled into the house. The horse-shoe retains its potency as a charm on the sea as well as on land, and it has long been a practice among sailors to nail this favorite amulet against the mast of a vessel, whether fishing-boat or large sea-going craft, as a protection against the Evil One. The shoe of a "wraith-horse," the mythical off spring of a water-stallion, is especially esteemed by Scotch mariners for this purpose.

In Bohemia only exists the superstition exactly opposite to that elsewhere prevalent, namely, that whoever picks up a horse-shoe thereby ipso facto picks up ill-luck for himself,--a notable example in folk-lore of the exception which proves the rule. The Bohemians, however, believe a nailed-up horse-shoe to be a cure for lunacy.

As a general rule, the degree of luck pertaining to a horse-shoe found by chance has been thought to depend on the number of nails remaining in it: the more nails the more luck.

In Northumberland the holes free of nails are carefully counted, as these indicate, presumably in years, how soon the finder of the shoe may expect to be married. The peasants of northern Portugal prefer mule-shoes having an uneven number of nail-holes, as counteractives of the evil influences of the dreaded, omnipresent witches known as the Bruxas.

In Derbyshire it is customary to drive a horseshoe, prongs upward, between two flagstones near the door of a dwelling. This position is sometimes explained by saying that, so placed, the luck cannot spill out.

You can read even more about horseshoes at: Sacred Texts
photo by John Carlton


Anonymous said...

A cure for lunacy? Maybe I need to put one up right away! LOL

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