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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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SUPERSTITION

ALAYS CUT YOUR HAIR WHEN THE MOON IS GROWING, NEVER SHRINKING,
AND IT WILL GROW FASTER.

Submitter comment: SOURCE NOT REMEMBERED.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Body part Senses
BELIEF -- Moon
BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal

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JAMAICAN SUPERSTITION

NEVER TRY TO CUT A DRESS OUT ON A FRIDAY OR IT WON'T TURN OUT.

Submitter comment: LEARNED FROM A LADY-FRIEND FROM JAMAICA.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Home
BELIEF -- Measure of time WeekDayHour

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JEWISH SUPERSTITION: MENSTRUATION

NEVER TOUCH PICKLES DURING MENSTRUATION OR THEY WILL GO BAD.

Submitter comment: LEARNED FROM A JEWISH GIRL FRIEND WHOSE GRANDMOTHER WARNED HER
ABOUT THIS.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

Subject headings: Food Drink -- Manner of preparation Preservation

Date learned: 12-24-1963

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MENSTRUATION SUPERSTITION

NEVER HAVE A TOOTH FILLED DURING MENSTRUATION OR IT WILL FALL OUT.

Submitter comment: SOURCE NOT REMEMBERED.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

James Callow Keyword(s): DENTISTRY

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Body part Senses
BELIEF -- Means of Causing or Avoiding Illness
BELIEF -- Method of Curing

Date learned: 12-24-1963

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MENSTRUATION SUPERSTITION

WHEN A WOMAN IS MENSTRUATING SHE SHOULD NEVER GO NEAR FLOWERS
OR THEY WILL WILT.

Submitter comment: LEARNED AS A YOUNG GIRL FROM HER MOTHER.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Plant

Date learned: 01-01-1964

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JAMAICAN SUPERSTITION: MENSTRUATION

WHEN A WOMAN IS MENSTRUATING, SHE SHOULD NEVER LOOK AT THE DEAD
OR SOMETHING TERRIBLE MIGHT HAPPEN.

Submitter comment: LEARNED FROM A LADY-FRIEND FROM JAMAICA.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

Keyword(s): B477 HUMAN ACTIVITY (BODILY FUNCTION)

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial

Date learned: 01-01-1964

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JAMAICAN SUPERSTITION: MENSTRUATION

A WOMAN SHOULD NEVER BAKE A CAKE WHEN SHE IS MENSTRUATING OR IT
WILL NOT RISE.

Submitter comment: LEARNED THIS FROM A LADY-FRIEND FROM JAMAICA.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

Subject headings: Food Drink -- Manner of preparation Process
Food Drink -- Pastry Sweet Dessert
BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal

Date learned: 01-01-1964

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ITALIAN AND FRENCH SUPERSTITION: BREAD AND LUCK

ALWAYS HAVE THE CRUST OF THE BREAD FACING UP ON THE TABLE OR YOU
WILL HAVE BAD LUCK.

Submitter comment: LEARNED WHILE TRAVELLING THROUGHOUT EUROPE 1959-1961.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Home
BELIEF -- Bad luck

Date learned: 12-24-1963

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JAMAICAN SUPERSTITION

IF YOU HAVE COMPANY AND YOU WISH THAT SOMEONE WOULD LEAVE, STAND
IN BACK OF THAT PERSON WITH A BROOM. HOLD IT UPSIDE-DOWN AND
SPRINKLE SALT AND PEPPER INTO IT. THE PERSON WILL LEAVE ALMOST
IMMEDIATELY.

Submitter comment: LEARNED FROM A LADY FRIEND FROM JAMAICA.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: Food Drink -- Flavoring Spice
BELIEF -- Mineral
BELIEF -- Street Trip Relations between relatives, friends, host and guest Social class Rank

Date learned: 01-01-1964

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JAMAICAN SUPERSTITION

IF A PREGNANT WOMAN FEELS HER CHILD COMING ON AND THERE IS NO
DOCTOR OR HOSPITAL AVAILABLE TO HER, A HEAVY WEIGHT MUST BE
PLACED ON HER HEAD. THE BABY WON'T COME UNTIL THE WEIGHT IS
REMOVED.

Submitter comment: LEARNED THIS FROM A LADY-FRIEND FROM JAMAICA.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth

Date learned: 01-01-1964

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SUPERSTITION

IF A PREGNANT WOMAN IS HIT ON HER LEFT ARM, HER CHILD WILL HAVE
A SCAR THERE.

Submitter comment: LEARNED FROM HER MOTHER.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Body part Senses Specific distinguishing characteristic Dimple, wart, mole, scar, freckle, birthmark, strawberry mark, bruise, spot (on any part of body)
BELIEF -- Birth

Date learned: 12-24-1963

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JAMAICAN SUPERSTITION

FOR A NEW-BORN CHILD: NEVER LET A STRANGER INTO THE SAME ROOM
WITH THE CHILD FOR 9 DAYS. IF SOMEHOW THIS CANNOT BE AVOIDED,
IMMEDIATELY OPEN A BIBLE OVER THE CHILD'S HEAD TO DRIVE AWAY
EVIL SPIRITS.

Submitter comment: LEARNED FROM A LADY-FRIEND FROM JAMAICA.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

Subject headings: 686 Ninths / Nine
BELIEF -- Devil Demon
BELIEF -- Birth
BELIEF -- Magic Book

Date learned: 01-01-1964

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JAMAICAN SUPERSTITION

IF A WOMAN IS PREGNANT AND EXPECTING WITHIN A NUMBER OF DAYS OR
WEEKS, A FULL MOON WILL CAUSE THE CHILD TO COME QUICKER.

Submitter comment: LEARNED FROM A LADY-FRIEND FROM JAMAICA.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Moon
BELIEF -- Birth

Date learned: 01-01-1964

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SUPERSTITION

IF A GIRL PUTS A SLIP ON INSIDE-OUT AND DOESN'T REALIZE IT UNTIL
THE DAY IS THROUGH, SHE MAY MAKE A WISH AND IT WILL COME TRUE.

Submitter comment: SOURCE NOT REMEMBERED.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

James Callow Keyword(s): POSITION DIRECTION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Prayer

Date learned: 12-24-1963

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ITALIAN AND FRENCH SUPERSTITION

NEVER CROSS YOUR FORK AND KNIFE AFTER A MEAL OR TERRIBLE
FORTUNE WILL COME YOUR WAY.

Submitter comment: LEARNED WHILE TRAVELLING IN EUROPE 1959-1961.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Measure of time Eating For menu, see N222.
BELIEF -- Sign Geometric figure Cross and its various modifications
BELIEF -- Bad luck

Date learned: 12-24-1963

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JAMAICAN SUPERSTITION

IT'S BAD LUCK TO SWEEP THE HOUSE AFTER 6 O'CLOCK AT NIGHT.

Submitter comment: LEARNED FROM A LADY-FRIEND FROM JAMAICA.

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Measure of time WeekDayHour
BELIEF -- Measure of time Working
BELIEF -- Bad luck

Date learned: 01-01-1964

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ROLLING CALF

IF YOU ARE A BUTCHER, WHEN YOU DIE YOU WILL BECOME A ROLLING CALF
A ROLLING CALF IS A GHOST WHO IS MOST DREADED AND
CRUEL. IT HAS EYES LIKE FIRE. IF YOU MEET ONE ON THE ROAD RUN FOR
YOUR LIFE AND MAKE A KATHA, THEN SIT ON IT BUT DON'T FALL ASLEEP.
IF YOU FALL ASLEEP THE ROLLING CALF WILL KILL AND DISFIGURE YOU AS IF
YOU WERE BORN WITH THE DISFIGUREMENT.

Submitter comment: THE SPELLING OF ROLLING CALF MAY BE WRONG.
I WAS UNABLE TO LOCATE THE WORD "KATHA" IN ANY DICTIONARY. THE
SPELLING WHICH WAS GIVEN TO ME WAS SAID TO BE CORRECT. A "KATHA" IS A
WAD OF CLOTH WHICH IS PLACED ON THE HEAD WHEN CARRYING OBJECTS ON
IT.
DONALD LEE LEARNED THIS ITEM IN BUFF BAY JAMAICA.

Where learned: JAMAICA ; BUFF BAY

Subject headings: ART CRAFT ARCHITECTURE -- Human or animal body Deformation
BELIEF -- Ghost Spirit Phantom Specter
BELIEF -- Body part Senses Specific distinguishing characteristic Dimple, wart, mole, scar, freckle, birthmark, strawberry mark, bruise, spot (on any part of body)
BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial

Date learned: 10-31-1975

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JAMACAN SPIRIT BELIEF

OLD RAILROAD TUNNELS WHICH WERE DUG BY SLAVES WOULD OFTEN COLLAPSE
WHEN THE SLAVES WERE WORKING ON THEM. THE GHOSTS OF THE DEAD SLAVES
STILL ROAM IN THESE TUNNELS. NEVER SLEEP IN THOSE TUNNELS OR YOU
MIGHT BE KILLED BY THE SPIRITS.

Submitter comment: DONALD LEE LEARNED THIS ITEM IN BUFF BAY, JAMAICA.

Where learned: JAMAICA ; BUFF BAY

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Ghost Spirit Phantom Specter
BELIEF -- Product or activity of man or animal

Date learned: 10-31-1975

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JAMAICAN CURSE

IF YOU WANT TO GET RID OF ANYONE GO TO A RELATIVE'S GRAVE AND
SPRINKLE RICE AROUND IT' THEN, TRAIL THE RICE TO YOUR ENEMY,S
YARD. HE WILL BE DEAD THE NEXT DAY.

Submitter comment: DONALD LEE LEARNED THIS ITEM IN BUFF BAY, JAMAICA.

Where learned: JAMAICA ; BUFF BAY

James Callow Keyword(s): CONTAGIOUS MAGIC

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Death Funeral Burial
BELIEF -- Curse

Date learned: 10-31-1975

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NECK

IF YOU HAVE A STIFF NECK, HAVE A LEFT-HANDED PERSON CRACK IT FOR YOU.

Submitter comment: SOURCE NOT REMEMBERED

Where learned: NEW YORK ; JAMAICA

Keyword(s): LEFT HANDEDNESS

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Method of Curing

Date learned: 01-01-1964

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