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Animal Superstitions C
CalfIf the first calf born during the winter is white, the winter will be a bad one.
Source: Icelandic Folktales
A Norse legend tells of the chariot of Freya, the witch, that was pulled by black cats that became black horses. They were exceedingly swift and surely possessed by the Devil. After serving Freya for seven years, the cats were rewarded by being turned into witches, disguised as black cats. This seems to have led to the belief in the Middle Ages that black cats were familiars of witches, and after seven years, became witches themselves. They believed if a black cat crossed your path, Satan was taking notice of you.
Butter your cat's feet when you move to keep it from running away from
the new house.
If a cat crosses or jumps over the coffin, the dead person's spirit
will return as a ghost.
A black cat is lucky or unlucky, depending on where you live.
Cats were sacred to the goddess, Isis in Egyptian mythology.
Bast or Pasht, the daughter of Isis, was represented with the face of a cat. Anyone who killed a cat was put to death.
Archaeologists in Egypt found cat cemeteries from which a shipment of embalmed cats was taken to England. In Egypt it was believed that a black cat crossing one's path brought good luck.
In East Anglia, England, they used to mummify cats and place them in the walls of their homes to ward off evil spirits.
If a black cat walks towards you, it brings good fortune, but if it walks away, it takes the good luck with it.
Keep cats away from babies because they "suck the breath" of the child.
A cat onboard a ship is considered to bring luck.
CattleCattle were highly regarded by the Celts, being the most important animal for their sustenance and welfare and also a basis for wealth and prestige. They were also believed to have close ties with their human owners and to be aware of human activities and festivals. In some areas it is thought that cattle should be informed of any deaths in their owners' household, or the cows, sensing that something was wrong, would sicken and probably die. During mediaeval times the superstition arose that cattle would kneel at the stroke of midnight on Christmas Eve; in some parts of Europe they were also believed to gain the ability to speak on this night, although it was considered dangerous for any human to hear their speech as misfortune would befall anyone who overheard them.
Source: Vanessa's Pagan Place Folklore Page
There are many English, Irish and Welsh tales of fairy cows who gave never-ending milk until their generosity was abused by some greedy human, causing a loss of the cow or her
powers. A Lancashire tale tells of a dun cow that appeared during a famine to save the people with her unending milk supply, until one person tried to get more than her fair share by
milking the cow through a sieve, leading to the cow's death from exhaustion and sorrow at the trick. Fairy cattle could be dun or red but were more usually white with red ears.
It was once considered unlucky if an offer were made to purchase cattle which were not for sale, leading to their illness and perhaps death. In some districts it was also considered
unlucky to strike cattle with human hands; a stick should be used to drive them from place to place, and should be thrown away once the destination was reached. Cattle who stand close
together in low ground, and feed hard together, are said to be foretelling rain, but if they stand on high ground the weather will be fair.
Cattle diseases were often attributed to the machinations of fairies, elves or witches, and many charms were used to fend off these magical attacks. Horseshoes or holed stones hung
above the door of the byre, or crosses made of rowan wood fixed over cattle-stalls, were believed to ward off evil influences. In the sixteenth century wax from a Paschal Candle would
be moulded into a special candle, and wax from it dripped between the ears and horns of the beasts; the remaining wax was then set over the main door, or on the threshold, so that all
the cattle had to pass the spot. Written charms were also obtained from local wise-women or cunning-men to ward off evil, and concealed in the roof or under the floorboards.
It was traditional to drive cattle over the embers of the Beltane and Midsummer fires, as a magickal protection against cattle plague and other dieases. As recently as the nineteenth
century, some farmers would sacrifice one healthy calf or cow (sometimes burying it under the threshold of the byre with feet pointing upwards) as a symbolic sacrifice that the herd might
be spared from cattle plague.
CowsIf a plow kills a daddy long legs the cows will go dry
If you see nine cows in a shed with a gray bull next to the door, and all of them lie on the same side, you are in luck, because you will be granted one wish.
CricketA cricket is a lucky house spirit that takes it's luck away when it leaves.
A cricket can tell of oncoming rain, death, and x-lovers.
It's bad luck to kill a cricket.
Six is death.
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