Is a Black Cat Bad Luck?

by Alex Kountry
Updated on

Many people believe that black cats are bad luck, but is there any truth to this superstition? We take a look at the history and origins of this belief to see if there’s any merit to it.

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The History of Black Cats

Black cats have been associated with bad luck for centuries. In the Middle Ages, black cats were believed to be the familiars of witches. In many cultures, black cats are still considered to be bad luck. Let’s take a closer look at the history of black cats.

Ancient Egypt

In ancient Egypt, cats were revered as gods. They were domesticated and considered helpful in getting rid of vermin, so they were allowed to roam freely in people’s homes and temples. Because of their position in society, cats were mummified and buried in tombs with great care.

Some believe that the Egyptians’ religious beliefs about cats led to the idea that a black cat is bad luck. In Egyptian mythology, the goddess Bastet was often depicted as a woman with the head of a black cat. She was associated with protection, fertility, and motherhood. However, she could also be fierce when she needed to be, and was sometimes depicted as a lioness.

Because of Bastet’s dual nature, some people thought that having a black cat in your home would bring both good and bad luck.

Middle Ages

In the middle ages, black cats were commonly associated with witchcraft. In fact, any animal that was considered “unusual” or different was often targeted as a witch’s familiar. This is likely because many people did not understand how these animals behaved, and so they were seen as being under the control of evil forces. Black cats were especially feared because of their ability to blend in with the darkness, making them difficult to see at night.

During this time, it was believed that if a black cat crossed your path, it meant that you were about to be cursed orhexed. If a black cat sat on your doorstep, it was a sign that death was coming to your home. And if you killed a black cat, it was said that you would be cursed with bad luck for the rest of your life.

Despite all of these negative associations, there were also some people who saw black cats in a positive light. For example, in parts of Europe, black cats were actually thought to bring good luck. In other cultures, black cats were seen as mystical creatures with the ability to see into the future.

Black Cats in Folklore

The black cat has been notoriously known in folklore to be a bad omen. In olden times, people believed that black cats were witches in disguise. They also thought that a black cat crossing your path was an omen of bad luck. There are even stories of people being cursed by black cats. Let’s take a closer look at the black cat in folklore.

United States

In the United States, black cats are generally considered to be good luck. This is likely because they are often associated with Halloween and witchcraft. In many cultures, Halloween is a time when the veil between our world and the spirit world is at its thinnest, and black cats are thought to be able to cross between the two worlds easily. This also makes them a popular choice for Halloween decorations.

Black cats are also associated with luck in love and relationships. It is said that if you see a black cat crossing your path from left to right, it means that your love life will improve. But if the black cat crosses your path from right to left, it means that someone in your life will soon die.

Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule. Some people believe that black cats are bad luck, and that they should be avoided at all costs. This is especially true if the black cat has green eyes. It is said that green-eyed black cats are actually witches in disguise, and that they bring bad luck to anyone who crosses their path.

United Kingdom

In the United Kingdom, black cats are considered good luck. In Scottish folklore, a black cat’s arrival to a home portends prosperity and good fortune for the household. Black cats are also considered good luck in Japan.


In Japan, black cats are considered good luck. Maneki-neko, or “beckoning cats,” are a common sight in Japanese businesses, and they are often depicted with one paw raised as if they are beckoning customers inside. Black cats are also popular pets in Japan.

Are Black Cats Bad Luck?

There are a lot of superstitions around black cats. Some people believe that they are bad luck, but others believe that they are good luck. So, what is the truth? Are black cats really bad luck?

Scientific Research

There is no scientific evidence to support the claim that black cats are bad luck. In fact, black cats are often considered good luck in many cultures, including Japan and England. However, there is some anecdotal evidence that suggests black cats may be more likely to be associated with bad luck simply because they are more visible and therefore more likely to be involved in accidents or negative events.


There are a few different superstitions that people believe when it comes to black cats. One is that a black cat crossing your path is bad luck. This superstition is believed to have started in the Middle Ages. During this time, black cats were associated with witches and witchcraft. People believed that if a black cat crossed your path, it meant that you were going to be cursed by a witch.

Another superstition is that black cats are bad luck for ships. This superstition comes from sailors who believed that black cats were bad luck because they were associated with witchcraft and the devil. Sailors would often kill black cats because they thought it would help them avoid getting bad luck on their voyage.

The last superstition is that having a black cat in your home will bring you good luck. This superstition is believed to have started in Egypt. Egyptians worshipped a goddess named Bastet who had a black cat as her symbol. They believed that having a black cat in their home would bring them good luck and protect them from evil spirits.

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About the author

Alex Kountry

Alex Kountry is the founder of HayFarmGuy and has been a backyard farmer for over 10 years. Since then he has decided to write helpful articles that will help you become a better backyard farmer and know what to do. He also loves to play tennis and read books


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