9 Knife Superstitions You Need to Know

9 Knife Superstitions You Need to Know

Superstitions, a mélange of ancestral wisdom, societal observations, and a touch of the supernatural have always intrigued us. From tales told over crackling fires to family rituals, superstitions have shaped human behavior for generations. While some see them as irrational beliefs, others find comfort in following traditions handed down for generations.

Knives, tools essential to human survival and evolution, are no exception. The sharp-edged blade, a symbol of protection and danger, has garnered its share of folklore. Let's delve into nine knife superstitions you may have never heard of but might find yourself secretly following reading this.


1. Black-Handled Knives Prevent Nightmares

Waking up, heart pounding from the tremors of a nightmare, is an experience many wish to avoid. Nightmares often dance at the edges of our consciousness, fueled by fears and anxieties. In many cultures, a knife with a black handle is believed to fend off these nightly disturbances when kept under the pillow.

Take, for instance, you’re an adventurer who’s in the wild for outdoor activities like hiking. It’s normal to feel scared if you’ll be spending a few nights there, as it’s an unusual resting place. If you believe in this particular superstition, find black-handled knives in your mystery knife box. Just put it under your pillow and worry about nothing!

Black, a color often linked with protection and absorption of negative energies, and a blade's symbolic strength, promises a sleeper's sanctuary. Hence, the dark handle symbolizes the absorption of negative energies, letting you enjoy a serene slumber.


2. A Steel Knife Keeps You from Curses and Fairies

Like spirits or fairies roaming around, many are believed to go on in the woods. Even in those days, people entered the woods to lay heavy curses on anyone who offended them. Now, you, a traveler or adventurer who only came to have fun in the wild, wouldn’t like to return home with strange curses. What do you do then?

According to old European folklore, a steel knife protects you from fairies and curses. Steel, a material hailed for strength, was believed to repel these supernatural entities.


Celtic lore insists that steel, especially a blade, repels malevolent fairies and breaks any curses. Placing it under your pillow in your tent or by the entrance could safeguard you from nocturnal fairy mischief or unwelcome enchantments. Also, as tales percolated through the ages, steel knives emerged as protective talismans.

So, to be on the safer side while in the wild at night, pick up your steel knife from your mystery knife box and do the needful!


3. You Might Bark like a Dog if You Eat with a Knife

Many of us were taught table manners from a young age, but this superstition adds a peculiar twist. It suggests that eating off a knife will transform your voice into an angry dog's bark. Sounds quirky. But this superstition, popular in certain parts of Europe, is taken quite seriously.

It could be an early method to dissuade children from cutting their mouths. It could have also been a way to instill respect for tools, each having its rightful place and purpose. Whichever it is, most Europeans have grown with that belief, and they have always avoided eating with a knife.


4. Avoid Crossing Knives to Avoid Arguments

Crossed knives might be the silent culprit behind unexpected spats during a peaceful dinner. Imagine you're bustling around the kitchen, and inadvertently, two knives end up crossed over each other. Superstition states that this innocent act forebodes an impending quarrel. And it might be among family members, friends, or even unexpected guests.



As trivial as it may sound, it's a stark reminder of how small actions can set the stage for more significant events, even if just symbolically. So, next time you're setting the table or cooking, be mindful of your knives' placement. After all, harmony often starts with the little things.


5. You Don't Want to Be Cruel? Don't Lick Your Knife

It’s a temptation many of us have succumbed to, especially when that last bit of cake clings to the blade. However, some believe licking food off a knife could gradually imbue you with a cruel disposition. Beyond the evident risk of cutting your tongue, this superstition hints at the idea that knives, as instruments of potential harm, can transfer their essence if treated lightly.

So, as delicious as that cake batter may seem, think twice before licking it off the knife!


6. Angels Run from People Who Play With Knives

A beautiful poetic superstition yet filled with caution. In many cultures, knives are tools and symbols of deeper moral lessons. So, they believe playing with knives repels angels, those guardians of virtue.

This superstition reminds us of the reverence we must show towards instruments that can harm us and the unseen forces that guide and protect us. But it could have only been an endearing way for our ancestors to imbue knife safety. And since divine protection is something many seek, they have believed.


7. Sharpening Blades After Sunset Brings Bad Luck

The setting sun heralds a time for rest, reflection, and rejuvenation. Sharpening a blade post-sunset disrupts this sanctity, drawing in bad luck. This superstition also hearkens back to when people saw nighttime as the realm of the unknown, and certain activities were best left for daylight.

So, as day gives way to night, it's considered ill-advised to sharpen blades.

Beyond the symbolic implications, sharpening knives after dark in a time without proper lighting could lead to accidents. This belief also respects the shared communal silence of the evening, emphasizing unity and peace.


8. Gifting Knife to New Couples

Gifting a blade might raise eyebrows, given some of the superstitions we've discussed. But in certain cultures, it's a revered wedding gift. Symbolizing strength, protection, and unity, a knife promises the couple resilience against adversities.



However, to sidestep potential bad luck, the couple should offer a coin in return, essentially 'purchasing' the knife from the giver. It ensures the bond remains unbroken, blending financial prosperity with emotional security.


9. Don't Pass a Knife Hand to Hand

There may be a long-standing custom in a civilization where people frequently study energy transfers that a knife should never be passed from one person to another. Like crossing blades, the straight transfer of a knife from one person to another is designed to incite conflict or anxiety in social situations.

Leaving it on the floor for the other person to pick up is more considerate and cozy. It guarantees that their exchanges are sincere and composed.


Bottom Line

In conclusion, these knife superstitions give us an intriguing glimpse into the human brain as they coexist with prudence, folklore, and cultural differences. They guide actions, evoke emotions, and at times, even bring a smile.

While a simple tool, the knife becomes a mirror reflecting countless facets of our shared human journey. Whether these tales find a home in your beliefs, they undoubtedly carve out a niche in our collective cultural lore.

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Angela William

Jan 12, 2024

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