Spurious old wives’ tale spilled


Just in time for Halloween, let’s spill the tea on the age-old wives’ tale “spilling salt brings bad luck.”

This superstition dates to the 15th century. In fact, Leonardo da Vinci’s painting The Last Supper reveals a pile of spilled salt near the crook of Judas Iscariot’s arm, presumed to have been knocked over by the traitor’s elbow. Thusly, spilling salt is associated with bad fortune and corruption.

The action of spilling salt is also said to invite the devil. As for throwing the salt over your shoulder, it is believed that the devil himself stands over your left shoulder. By throwing salt his way, it is thought to blind and prevent him from taking over your body after you accidentally invited him in with the spillage.

Can you pass the pepper, please.

Reference material taken in part from the following sources: bestlifeonline.com, Pictured: The Last Supper by Leonardo da Vinci, interior wall mural in the Santa Maria Delle Grazie, Milan, Italia, 1495.

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