I wish to everyone a prosperous, healthy and lucky 2017th!
Tomorrow is 6th of January and we have a holiday! Because in Germany we celebrate the Three Kings’s day when children caroling from door to door, dressed up as the Three Kings (Melchior, Gaspar and Balthazar). Meanwhile this tradition commemorating the visit of baby Jesus (by the three kings) the kids come to greet the new year and wish good luck and happiness. In Europe it is quite common to give them some gifts or money. At the end of the day it’s time to dismantle the Christmas tree which means that the festive season is officially over!
But what can bring luck? Many things! It depends on where do you live, what do you believe in etc. because luck is symbolized by a wide array of objects, numbers, symbols, plant and animal life which vary significantly in different cultures globally. The significance of each symbol is rooted in either folklore, mythology, esotericism, religion, tradition, necessity or a combination thereof. This is a list of lucky symbols, signs and charms:
Numbers: 7 for the Christians, 8 for the Chinese, for the latter it sounds like the Chinese word for „fortune”.
Animals: Albatross which is considered a sign of good luck if seen by sailors.
Ladybugs or ladybirds: In Germany, in Italy, In Russia, in Turkey, and in Serbia the bug brings luck. There is an old children’s song in Serbia “Fly, fly, ladybug, bring me the happiness” meaning “Let, let, bubamaro”. In Serbian “sreća” meaning “good chances” as in a lottery or “happiness”, but this is about emotions.
Fish: Chinese, Hebrew, Ancient Egyptian, Tunisian, Indian, Japanese lucky charm
Pig: brings luck in China, and in Germany
Sarimanok: is a legendary bird in Philippines (Maranao), more precisely is a fowl with colorful wings which brings luck.
White elephant: Burmese, Thai lucky charm.
Vegetable: Fly agaric (amanita muscaria mushroom) The weird thing is that it is the most poisonous mushroom! But in Germany called Glückspilz brings luck!
Bamboo: means a lot for the Chinese
Four-leaf clover: very important for the Irish and for the Celts
Barn star: in the United States
Horseshoe: English and several other European ethnicities. Horseshoes are considered lucky when turned upwards but unlucky when turned downwards, although some people believe the opposite
Rabbit’s foot can be worn as a charm.
Jade: in China means a lot.
Maneki-neko in Japan and China. Often mistakes as a Chinese symbol due to its usage in Chinese communities but the maneki-neko is Japanese.
Wishbone: In Europe and North America
Dreamcatcher: Native American (Ojibwe)
Human: Chimney sweep: many parts of the world, it is said to bring good luck when being touched, especially on New Year and on weddings
Spirit: Aitvaras: it is a goblin in the Lithuanian mythology