Unsplash / Ellen Auer
Weird mirror superstitions from around the world
People believe a lot of quirky things about mirrors.
Breaking a mirror can bring seven years bad luck
Mirrors are portals to the otherworld
They can be used to see your future husband
Mirrors are everywhere – in our homes, in our bags, on our cars, in restrooms, and shopping malls. Nature provided us with the first mirror. Our ancestors would have seen their reflections in pools or containers of waters. But of course, mirrors have been used throughout history. The Egyptians used mirrors crafted from polished copper, South Americans used polished stone, and the Chinese made them out of bronze.
The mirror, as we know it, was invented around 1835 by a German chemist, Justus von Liebig, who developed a way of applying a thin layer of silver to one side of a pane of glass to create a reflective surface. Perhaps because this everyday item has been with us throughout time and is used daily, the most bizarre superstitions are attached to it.
Don’t break it!
The most widely held superstition about mirrors is that if you break them, you’ll get seven years bad luck. This stems from Roman times when it was believed that the soul could be seen in a mirror and that a reflective surface was a portal to the otherworld.
The Romans thought that the soul renewed every seven years, and if you broke a mirror, you damaged your soul for that amount of time. Other versions include the soul escaping or breaking into pieces. It’s also the reason why you can’t see vampires and witches in a mirror. Since witches and vampires don’t have souls, they can’t be seen.
Bloody Mary, bloody Mary! This childhood game made famous by many horror films plays on the mirror superstition that if you hold a candle to a mirror and call her name thirteen times, the evil entity will appear.
Mirrors then have been seen as a way into the afterlife. For this reason, it is also common to cover mirrors in the house of someone who has just died so that they cannot be released and haunt the family.
Not all superstitions are bad
Not all mirror superstitions are bad. Mirrors can even be used to see your future husband! It is said that if a young woman sits in front of a mirror on Halloween with a lit candle, she will see the man of her dreams.
Taking an apple, she must cut it into nine slices and eat eight of them. The final slice should be thrown at the mirror. The image of her future husband will appear to catch the apple slice.
Once married, the new couple should stand together in front of a mirror not long after the ceremony. This will join their souls in the otherworld and bring good fortune to their marriage.
Mirrors can even be used to see your future husband!
Mirrors can also predict good luck. If you’re walking past a mirror and scare yourself with a sudden glance or come across a mirror that takes you by surprise, good times are coming your way! Feeling depressed or anxious, gaze at yourself in a mirror and feel your troubles melt away. The otherworld will remove your worries and cares.
The Chinese have made Feng shui a popular way of arranging your living space. They believe that evil spirits are scared off by their own reflections. It’s a good idea then to protect your home by placing a mirror opposite your front door to deflect negative or evil energy.
Just don’t have a mirror in front of your bed in case your soul leaves you while you are sleeping and slips away into the otherworld. Believe them or not, mirrors superstitions are many and varied.
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