Tuesday, October 1, 2013


  • Ireland-An Owl that enters the house must be killed at once, for if it flies away it will take the luck of the house with it.

  • Israel-In Hebrew lore the Owl represents blindness and desolation and is unclean.

  • Jamaica-To ward off the Owl's bad luck, cry "Salt and pepper for your mammy".

  • Japan-Among the Ainu people the Eagle Owl is revered as a messenger of the gods or a divine ancestor. They would drink a toast to the Eagle Owl before a hunting expedition. The Screech Owl warns against danger. Though they think the Barn Owl and Horned Owl are demonic.

  • Latvia-When Christian soldiers entered his temple, the local pagan god flew away as an Owl.

  • Luxembourg-Owls spy treasures, steal them and hoard them.

  • Madagascar-Owls join witches to dance on the graves of the dead.

  • Malawi-The Owl carries messages for witches.

  • Mexico-The Owl makes the cold North wind whilst the gentle South wind is made by the butterfly. The Little Owl was called "messenger of the lord of the land of the dead", and flew between the land of the living and the dead.

  • Middle East-The Owl represents the souls of people who have died unavenged.
  • Mongolia-The Burial people hang up Owl skins to ward off evil.

  • Morocco-The cry of Owls can kill infants. According to Moroccan custom, an Owl's eye worn on a string around the neck was an effective talisman to avert the "evil eye."

  • New Mexico-The hooting of Owls warns of the coming of witches.

  • New Zealand-To the Maoris the Owl is an unlucky bird.

  • Newfoundland-The hoot of the Horned Owl signals the approach of bad weather.

  • Nigeria-In legend, Elullo, a witch and a chief of the Okuni tribe, could become an Owl.

  • Persia-Wizards use arrows tipped with a bewitched man's fingernails to kill Owls.

  • Peru-Boiled Owl is said to be a strong medicine.

  • Poland-Polish folklore links Owls with death. Girls who die unmarried turn into doves; girls who are married when they die turn into Owls. An owl cry heard in or near a home usually meant impending death, sickness, or other misfortune. An old story tells how the Owl does not come out during the day because it is too beautiful, and would be mobbed by other, jealous birds.

  • Romania-The souls of repentant sinners flew to heaven in the guise of a Snowy Owl.

  • Russia-Hunters carry Owl claws so that, if they are killed, their souls can use them to climb up to Heaven. Tartar shaman of Central Russia could assume Owl shapes. Kalmucks hold the Owl to be sacred because one one waved the life of Genghis Khan.

  • Saxony-The Wend people say that the sight of an Owl makes child-birth easier.

  • Scotland-It's bad luck to see an Owl in daylight.

  • Siberia-The Owl is a helpful spirit.

  • Spain-Legend has it that the Owl was once the sweetest of singers, until it saw Jesus crucified.

  • Ever since it has shunned daylight and only repeats the words "cruz, cruz" ("cross, cross").

  • Sri Lanka-The Owl is married to the bat.

  • Sumeria-The goddess of death, Lilith, was attended by Owls.

  • Sweden-The Owl is associated with witch's.

  • Transylvania-Farmers used to scare away Owls by walking round their fields naked.

  • U.S.A.-If you hear an Owl-cry you must return the call, or else take off an item of clothing and put it on again inside-out.

  • Wales-An Owl heard among houses means an unmarried girl has lost her virginity. If a woman is pregnant and she alone hears an owl hoot outside her house at night then her child will be blessed.

  • Yorkshire-Give children Owl broth to cure the whooping-cough.

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