Surprising Facts About Friday the 13th You Never Knew from Surprising Facts About Friday the 13th You Never Knew

Surprising Facts About Friday the 13th You Never Knew

Today is considered by millions of people as the unluckiest day in Western superstition. The origins of the concept are unknown, but it's believed to date back to the Middle Ages. You may believe the superstition or laugh at it and people who do, and you may even use it as an excuse to stay home and watch horror movies all day, but it’s certainly one of the most talked about dates on the calendar.

Friggatriskaidekaphobia or paraskevidekatriaphobia


This is the actual name of the condition people have when they fear Friday the 13th. It originates from Norse mythology where Frigg is the Norse Goddess for Friday. Learn how to pronounce paraskevidekatriaphobia with the help of NPR. The term was created by Dr. Donald E. Dossey, an American psychotherapist specializing in phobias, who claimed that when someone was able to pronounce the word they were cured.



Fear of Friday the 13th has many names but the disorder triskaidekaphobia is serious. It is a lot of more a general discomfort on that day. It is a severe fear of the number 13 with physical symptoms such as acute anxiety, nausea, vomiting, difficulty breathing, rapid heartbeat, sweating and feelings of panic.

No 13th floor in many tall buildings


Have you noticed that there is no 13th floor in some elevators in hotels and other tall buildings? (Technically, the floor is just labeled differently.) This is due to a general superstition regarding the “unlucky” number. Hotel owners just want to make sure they don’t offend or scare any superstitious guests.

The Thirteen Club


The club was formed in 1880’s to debunk the myths and superstitions around the unlucky number. Thirteen men gathered for grand parties with every 13th of the month. They did all kinds of things that would usually be considered risky or threatening such as breaking mirrors. As you can imagine, no one died as a result.

Jesus was crucified


Western culture's fear of Friday the 13th and the number "13" most likely started in the Middle Ages, originating from the story of Jesus' last supper and crucifixion, according to anthropologists. It is fairly known among Christians that Jesus was crucified on Friday, which happened to be the 13th.

13 people during the Last Supper

Renata Sedmakova/

The 13 people at the table were Jesus and his 12 apostles. Judas, the apostle who is said to have betrayed Jesus, was the last one to arrive – 13th member of the group.

The Nazis bombed Buckingham Palace


During the Blitz, Buckingham Palace and its grounds were struck on sixteen separate occasions (of which nine were direct hits). The Palace was being hit several days in a row, including on Friday, Sept. 13, 1940 at around 11 a.m., during the second of three daylight raids on London that day, according to West End at War.

Stock exchange’s Friday the 13th mini-crash

Brat Sadowski/

In 1989, on October 13, which was a Friday, a stock market crash occurred. The incident is referred to by many as “Black Friday.” The shock was reportedly triggered by a reaction to a news story of the collapse of a $6.75 billion leveraged takeover deal for UAL Corporation, which owned United Airlines.

Hollywood sign unveiled


What is possibly the most famous sign in the world happened to be unveiled on Friday the 13th, 1923. It was built by Los Angeles Times publisher Harry Chandler as an epic $21,000 billboard for his upscale Hollywoodland real estate development, according to Each of the original 13 letters was 30 feet wide and approximately 43 feet tall.

No more than three times a year


It occurs when the 13th day of the month in the Gregorian calendar falls on a Friday, which can be the case at least once every year, and up to three times a year.

Bargain good plane tickets


The power of superstition is bringing prices down. Research involving by flight comparison website that was looking at the 20 most popular departures from UK airports, found that the cost of flying on January 13 (a Friday) was, on average, five percent cheaper than a normal January day. Sometimes flights are more than 40 percent cheaper.

21 million Americans fear Friday the 13th


Approximately 17-21 million Americans are afraid of Friday the 13th, thinking it is unluckiest day of the year, according to a study done by the Stress Management Center and Phobia Institute in Asheville, North Carolina.

Princess Diana’s death


The car accident that killed the People’s Princess occurred at the 13th pillar of the Pont de l’Alma tunnel. Some people believe this is no coincidence.