Close cookies panel

We use cookies to give you the best possible online experience.

If you continue, we'll assume you are happy for your web browser to receive all cookies from our website.

Javea

Costa Blanca, Spain

What to avoid in Spain: 5 of the most common superstitions

Posted by Luci Ackers on Mar 21, 2016
What to avoid in Spain: 5 of the most common superstitions

Visiting Spain any time soon? Take a look at some of their most popular traditions and superstitions.

Every culture has its own interesting and, sometimes baffling, traditions and superstitions. If you're off to Spain, have a read of some of their most popular superstitions and find out where they've come from.

1. Tuesday Blues

While the UK is traditionally wary of Friday the 13th, in Spain it is supposedly a Tuesday that is the bad luck day. On Tuesday the 13th people have been known to avoid getting married, going on a boat, embarking on a journey and even leaving the house!

There are several variations of the saying: Martes, ni te cases, ne ti embarques (Tuesday, neither get married, nor embark).

Unlucky 13 is a deep rooted concept that spans a number of cultures and religions... but why Tuesday? Well, Spanish is a Romance language whose origins lie in Latin; the days of the week are named after Roman gods. Martes, the Spanish for Tuesday, comes from Mars, the god of war.

Why would anyone want to travel on a day ruled by the god of war? That's just foolhardy!

2. Hats on Heads

When you come in from a day out, where do you chuck your hat? In Spain, to put your hat on the bed is a really bad idea, it'll bring you bad luck!

Could the origins of this superstition lie in the old belief that evil spirits lived in the hair and the air around a person's head? It is maybe due to the static electricity that occurred when removing a hat (particularly one lined with fur) that people once believed in the presence of evil spirits. It probably wasn't advisable to leave a hat somewhere the evil spirits could easily escape onto your bed.

Alternatively, the hat is generally a representation of the mind, thoughts and identity. Leaving your hat on the bed may have been symbolic of loosing your mind.

Or maybe it's more simple. A couple of sources suggest that the reason people never accepted someone leaving a hat on their bed was purely to prevent the spreading of headlice!

Whatever the reason. It's a bad omen – when in Spain, remember to hang your hat up.

3. The Power of Plants

As you walk the little streets of quaint Spanish towns, past white-washed houses, you will probably notice the abundance of cacti. If you're sitting in a restaurant, visiting a guesthouse, hotel or cafe, it's likely you'll see them perched in windows, by entryways and above doors. What has become a traditional Mediterranean sight has a lot to do with the climate: cacti are really common in this area and thrive in the warm, sunny, dry atmosphere of Spain. It makes sense for them to be the potted-plant of choice for attractive displays. But does the reasoning behind their ubiquity actually run deeper than convenience?

Well, yes! Traditionally quite a superstitious culture, as we've seen, the Spanish were rather concerned with the presence of evil spirits. It is said that the reason a cactus is placed at an entryway to a building, is because it is good at warding off evil. The cactus absorbs moisture from the air and any evil spirit trying to cross a threshold will drown in it. That's the hope, anyway, and the spirit would then be trapped there forever.

4. Beware the Broom

Brooms have been known to be very risky household objects! It is tradition in Spain to buy a new broom for a new house, you shouldn't take your old one with you if you move, or else it will bring with it all the bad luck from your old house. Think how many dropped gasses, broken mirrors and shattered plates it's swept up in its time. Best to get a new one with no history whatsoever.

Did you know that brooms also have the ability to determine your fate? Apparently if you are sweeping you must avoid sweeping your broom over the feet of a single woman or else she will never get married. There are variations of this superstition: some say you should avoid widows too and others say single men are just as much at risk. Basically, if you're single – avoid brooms, just to be safe! It has been suggested that the superstition originates with tales of witches. Others say that it simply comes from the outdated idea that if a single girl is not doing her own sweeping, she surely won't make a very good wife...

5. Devilish Colour Schemes

Stay away from the colour yellow if you're a superstitious person in Spain! The colour yellow traditionally represents sulphur and the devil. There are a number of superstitions surrounding yellow: you're not supposed to wear yellow on an important day, such as for an exam or interview, as it will surely bring you bad luck. Don't buy yellow clothes as a gift – it is not done to gift a friend or family member with yellow clothes. And certainly don't give yellow clothes as a gift for a baby! Apparently it will bring the evil eye.

What is considered in England as a neutral tone for a nursery would be considered a really bad idea for superstitious parents-to-be in Spain.

Know some other interesting superstitions? I'd love to hear yours. Leave a comment below.

Stay in Spain yourself and see if you can spot any evidence of these interesting superstitions along the beautiful Costa Blanca. Find out how to stay in the stunning villas of Jávea by entering your details at the bottom of the page.

FIND OUT HOW YOU TOO CAN STAY HERE
Share this post:
Luci Ackers
Author: Luci Ackers

Luci loves getting out and about for a good cycle ride or easy-going walks in the countryside, and thoroughly enjoyed the time she previously spent working for the National Trust. Her love of writing started from a young age and on rainy days nothing beats curling up in a secret corner with a good book.


0 Comments related to this article
Submit a Comment
Cancel Reply
Name *  
Email address *    
Comment *  
Submit Comment

All comments will be moderated before being displayed

How do I find out more?
Request our beautifully illustrated brochure

Javea is part of the Holiday Property Bond's growing portfolio of outstanding holiday properties throughout the UK and Europe, imaginatively created over 32 years to combine "home from home" comfort with total relaxation. Currently the portfolio features 35 holiday developments, all in stunningly beautiful locations across 13 countries, with over 1,400 individual villas, apartments and cottages.

For a summary of how HPB can give you and your family a lifetime of wonderful holidays and the risks as well as the benefits of an investment please read "Important Information" below.

Then we would be delighted to send you our brochure, including our property portfolio, along with our full length DVD introduced by Bondholder Sue Barker and a list of forthcoming Open Days and Exhibitions. Please just complete and submit this form or telephone our FREE brochure line on 0800 230 0391.

Request a brochure
Title *  
First Name *  
Surname *  
Email address  
Postcode *  
Telephone number
How did you hear about us?
I confirm I have read and understood your data policy.
SUBMIT
* Indicates required fields

AS FEATURED IN The Telegraph BBC Daily Mail The Sunday Times

IMPORTANT INFORMATION
This advertisement is issued by HPBM registered at HPB House, Newmarket, Suffolk, CB8 8EH. HPBM is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and is the main UK agent and the property manager for HPB, issued by HPB Assurance Limited ("HPBA") registered in the Isle of Man and authorised by the Financial Services Authority there. The Trustee of HPB is HSBC Trustee (C.I.) Limited registered at HSBC House, Esplanade, St Helier, Jersey, JE1 1GT. The Securities Manager is Stanhope Capital LLP of 35 Portman Square, London, W1H 6LR.

You should only invest in HPB for its holiday benefits – consistent quality and a no profit "user charge" to cover costs rather than a commercial rent. Although you can surrender your investment back to the company after two years or more you should not expect a full return of what you have paid. What you get back will reflect initial and ongoing charges and costs as well as changes in the value of the properties and securities in the fund in which your money, after charges, is invested. A summary of initial and ongoing charges is in section E of the Product Particulars. Exceptionally surrender may be deferred up to twelve months. Minimum initial payment £5,000 and then a quarterly fee of around thirty pounds linked to RPI. No medical examination required. HPB is available exclusively through HPBM who will only charge for their services if you invest.

HPBM advises only on HPB and is not independent of HPBA. Holders of policies issued by HPBA will not be protected by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme if the company becomes unable to meet its liabilities to them but Isle of Man compensation arrangements apply to new policies.

Privacy policy

Before you leave...

Why not request our fully illustrated brochure?

You will receive our beautiful property portfolio

Our full length DVD introduced by Bondholder & presenter Sue Barker

And a list of forthcoming Open Days and Open Events

REQUEST OUR BROCHURE