When it comes to finding the etymological origin of the word thirteen we have to go back to Latin because in that language it is found, more precisely in the term tredĕcim.

The thirteen (word that is represented in numbers through the union of 1 with 3) is the figure belonging to the group of natural numbers what happens to twelve (12) and is before the fourteen (14). Thirteen is also recognized as the Prime number that comes after the eleven (eleven) and appears before the seventeen (17).


Different symbolisms are attributed to the number 13.

The number 13 in culture and religion

Throughout the history and in different cultures, this value has been associated with the bad luck or with matters of a sacred nature. For example, for maya, was a figure considered sacred because it represented the thirteen moon phases.

Also, in Judaism this number is also considered a bad omen since thirteen were the spirits related to evil. And in the same way it happens in a Norse belief where this number is the one that identifies an evil deity called Loki who was the one who caused the death of the favorite god Balder.

In contrast, many Western countries consider thirteen to attract bad energy. There is even the triscaidecaphobia, a disorder that is characterized by experiencing an inconsiderate fear towards this number. It is said that the superstition arises from the fact that, during Last Supper, thirteen individuals sat at the table and one of them died.

For example, in the Formula 1 thirteen is not used (as in the planes). Same with some football teams. There’s also streets that skip portal 13 and Hotels who avoid using the 13th floor so as not to inconvenience their eventual guests. On MadridOn the other hand, there is no bus line 13.

13 indication

Sign indicating the number 13.

Bad luck and terror

It should be noted that in Latin America and in Spain, the Tuesday 13 is considered a bad omen, the same thing that happens in the Anglo-Saxon nations with the Friday the 13th.

Such is the negativity that this last date encloses that it has precisely given its name to one of the most important horror sagas of all time: Friday the 13th. In the 80s it was when the first of the twelve films that have appeared formed the group. The origin of the story it tells is the accidental death in 1957 of a boy named Jason in the lake of a camp called Crystal Lake.

A victim is that from then until today does not seem to rest in peace because all those who are in that place will gradually die in strange and savage circumstances that make a black legend begin to circulate around that enclave.

The number 13 in tarot and witchcraft

At tarot, the number 13 is interpreted as death and in its occult sense it represents change (the death of something and the birth of something else).

Finally, it must be said that thirteen is the preferred value of witches and the one that prevails, therefore, in covens (the place where sorcerers hold their meetings and rituals).

As with witches, it is necessary to emphasize the fact that the number 13 is not always viewed with negativity. Thus, for example, this figure is linked to Freya, a German goddess who identifies with love.