Long ago, visitors to English homes were expected to greet the family cat with a kiss to bring good luck. And in the 16th century, it was white cats that were a sign of bad luck, not like today’s belief that black cats crossing your path means misfortune.
More cat lore around the world: In Scotland, if a black cat happened to appear on the doorstep, the family believed their wealth would increase. In Italy, fisherman’s wives kept company with black cats to prevent disasters at sea. And back in the day, some folks thought a cat’s sneeze forecasted rain, while others believed unusually playful behavior signaled a storm was brewing. Seems there’s a black cat superstition for every culture. Here’s the reason behind the five most popular superstitions.
Rainbows are mostly thought of as positive symbols, though in parts of Scotland and Ireland, rainbows whose ends touched down within the same town or island foretold death. It’s also still believed in some places that to point a finger at a rainbow, the moon, or the stars is bad luck, since at one time celestial bodies were thought of as gods, and pointing at them was deemed disrespectful.