Back to Home Page or Contents Page or Past and present beliefs or Index

Squinting


A popular superstition is that a squint is an ill omen. Whenever encountering a squint-eyed person one should spit three times to avert the bad fortune.

This superstition is an old one, first being referred to in the treatise Fascination (de Fascino) published in 1589 by Vairus, prior of the Benedictine Convent Sta. Sophia in Benevento. Vairus stated in the work, "Let no servant ever hire himself to a squinting master." A.G.H.


Sources: 9, 1604; 81, 387.