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That killing a spider is followed by monetary loss is the belief in some parts of the country, thus particularizing the kind of ill luck to be expected.
But to see a spider is fortunate so long as it is not hurt.
Being a bit sqeamish about insects, or whatever multi-legged species they belong toI promptly called for someone to kill it. Among those of us present, two quickly said not to because it was "bad luck.
They are both originally from different areas of the US and neither one could say where they had heard it or explain why. Now, usually a belief like this is based around some sort of fact.
I can't for the life of me figure out what, so I figured that I'd ask here. I've never heard of this belief, nor has anyone in my family. Can anyone shed any light on this subject? If you wish to live and thrive Let the spider run alive "The number of the little buggers I've squished over the years since then may not bode well.
In search of further family traditions, i asked the folks in my office whether it was bad luck to kill spiders, and if so, why. I asked him if this had anything to do with losing money.
I always heard that if you killed a spider in a new house, the house would never be clean. I am no anthropologist, but i suspect that i am standing on well-trod ground when i theorize that the idea of a money-bringing or gift-giving spider who "refreshes and nourishes" must harken back to a very early time in human history and may well represent the folkloric vestige of an ancient European religious belief of some kind.
Speaking of religion, those who attend upon Native American traditions are probably aware that Spider-Woman is a major goddess of the Pueblo Indians. As such, however, she is not a lucky figure, but a religious one. Be that as it may, some people still have use for money-drawing spider amulets, and the spider can be seen in the hoodoo candle called "Alleged Controlling.
But, speaking of hoodoo brings us to a different perspective on spiders -- a less friendly one. Among old-time African American rootowrkers, it was commonly believed that one of the worst and most evil ways to poison an enemy was to feed them spider eggs -- especially in the form of dumplings -- for the little baby spiders would hatch out in the person's blood stream, causing the dangerous jinxed condition known as "Live Things In You.
The connection between spider eggs and dumplings is visually obvious to anyone who has seen a "spider nest" or egg-ball; it looks quite a bit like a small white flour dumpling. My own research into the subject of "Live Things" indicates that, both historically and contemporaneously, in the African American community hoodoo practitioners who most stringly believe in "Live Things" are generally also part Native American.
Evidence of African American beliefs about the misfortunes attending upon eating spider dumplings, or spiders falling into one's food or drink can be found in several old blues songs -- for instance "Sold It To The Devil by Black Spider Dumpling John D.
In keeping with the notion that spider eggs can cause "Live Things in You," spider webs, spider nest-balls, and dead spiders are commonly used as ingredients in goofer dusta hoodoo powder that is used to harm people.Dear Twitpic Community - thank you for all the wonderful photos you have taken over the years.
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