Old Wives' Tales and Superstitions to Bring Good Luck | The Old Farmer's Almanac

Get Lucky! Good Luck Superstitions and Old Wives' Tales

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Bring luck into your home. rusty horse shoe and four leaf clover

Folklore from The Old Farmer's Almanac Archives

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There are many superstitions for “good luck” around the home. Many of these would be called “Old Wives’ tales.” Let’s have fun exploring these age-old sayings.

Even though most of us say we are not superstitious, we avoid walking under ladders and practicing other superstitious behavior! Is it just tradition, or is there something to some of these old wives’ tales?

Here are 11 sayings for good luck in your home that come from The Old Farmer’s Almanac folklore archives:

  1. Scatter Solomon’s seal on the floor to banish serpents and venomous creatures from the room.
  2. To protect your house from lightning, gather hazel tree branches on Palm Sunday and keep them in the water.
  3. Add caraway seeds to chicken feed to keep poultry from wandering. Feed the seeds to homing pigeons to help them find their way back.
  4. Stuff fennel in your keyhole or hang it over your door to protect against evil spirits. (Of course, we now know fennel has many natural remedy benefits to help keep us healthy!)
  5. Never carry a hoe into the house. If you do so by mistake, carry it out again, walking backward to avoid bad luck.
  6. Never walk under a ladder, which is Satan’s territory. If you must do it, cross your fingers or make the sign of the fig (closed fist, with thumb between index and middle fingers).
  7. If you give a steel blade to a friend, make the recipient pay you a penny to avoid cutting the friendship.
  8. Never give a knife as a housewarming present, or your new neighbor will become an enemy.
  9. Never pound a nail after sundown; you will wake the tree gods.
  10. Nail an evergreen branch to new rafters to bring good luck. An empty hornet’s nest, hung high, also will bring good luck to a house of any age.
  11. When you move to a new house, always enter first with a loaf of bread and a new broom. Never bring an old broom into the house.
a loaf of bread and a knife

Enjoy folklore? Read all about herbs and folklore—and their many uses around the home!

What do you think about these superstitions? How superstitious are you?

About The Author

Catherine Boeckmann

Catherine Boeckmann loves nature, stargazing, and gardening so it’s not surprising that she and The Old Farmer’s Almanac found each other. She leads digital content for the Almanac website, and is also a certified master gardener in the state of Indiana. Read More from Catherine Boeckmann

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