Seasoned mariners believe in myths that have circulated in the boating world for years. One of the silliest myths people continue to believe is that sailors shouldn’t keep or eat a banana on board. The myth started in the 1700s when trade ships from Spain and the Caribbean would disappear, leaving only the yellow fruit behind floating in the wreckage. Since then, seafarers thought that a banana was the cause behind the sinking ship as the fruit brought bad luck.
After the rumor spread like wildfire, it was fanned further by believing that bananas were also bad for the business as they made catching fish difficult and caused mechanical issues, leaving you stranded in the water for days.
If you found this myth exciting and laughable, keep reading for more:
No Women Allowed
An old myth that dates back hundreds of years is that having a woman on a sea vessel brought bad luck. It was believed that women distracted sailors by arousing lust in them, which caused jealousy between the crew members.
The animosity would lead the sea god to get angry and attack the ship. Can you believe it?
Thankfully, women are not only on sailboats but also serve in the Navy. In later years, it was believed that having a statue of a naked woman with bare breasts on the bow of a boat would calm the sea and allow sailors to have a peaceful journey.
Watch Your Mouth
Sailors are notorious for cussing! Their foul language tells people how their prolonged distance from a civilized society has made them lose their manners. However, in the old days, sailors believed that by saying the word “drown,” they would somehow make their boat go underwater. Other words such as “goodbye” and “good luck” were also prohibited. Moreover, sailors never uttered any land words such as rabbits, foxes, pigs, etc., because it brought bad luck.
Sailing Is Forbidden on Thursdays and Fridays
This one’s a doozy: It is believed that sailing on Thursday is like inviting bad attention because it’s when the god of storms and thunder. Thor awakens. As for Friday, it does not protect you from bad luck because it’s the day Jesus was crucified.
A few other unlucky days are:
- 1st Monday of April – it’s when Cain killed Abel.
- 2nd Monday of August – it’s when Gomorrah and Sodom were destroyed.
- 31st December – it’s when Judas committed suicide.
Take Care of Your Cat
It was believed cats had a magical tail that predicted the weather and helped boats avoid storms. Another myth related to cats was that they ate rodents and prevented other critters from gnawing on wood and electrical wiring.
Hence, cats were considered a good omen.
So, which one of these myths had you in stitches? They are unbelievable, right. However, back then, sailors believed in them strongly.
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