Superstition

Folklore of Lancashire: Superstitions, manners, and customs from our county in the 1800s

Lancashire, like all other counties of England, has historically had its own peculiar superstitions, manners, and customs, which may or may not find parallels in those of other localities.

The following list of folklore of Lancashire was collected in 1851 by one Tattersall Wilkinson of Burnley, as exemplars of the time.

If a person's left ear burns, or feels hot, somebody is praising the party; if the right ear burns, then it is a sure sign that some one is speaking evil of the person.
If a person's left ear burns, or feels hot, somebody is praising the party; if the right ear burns, then it is a sure sign that some one is speaking evil of the person.
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Children are frequently cautioned by their parents not to walk backwards when going an errand; it is a sure sign that they will be unfortunate in their objects.
Children are frequently cautioned by their parents not to walk backwards when going an errand; it is a sure sign that they will be unfortunate in their objects.
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A horseshoe is nailed behind doors to counteract the effects of witchcraft: a hagstone tied to the key of the stable-door, protects the horses, and, if hung up at the bed's head, the farmer also.
A horseshoe is nailed behind doors to counteract the effects of witchcraft: a hagstone tied to the key of the stable-door, protects the horses, and, if hung up at the bed's head, the farmer also.
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A hot iron put into the cream during the process of churning, expels the witch from the churn; and dough in preparation for the baker is protected by being marked with the figure of a cross.
A hot iron put into the cream during the process of churning, expels the witch from the churn; and dough in preparation for the baker is protected by being marked with the figure of a cross.
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