butterflies


butterflies
   In William Hone's Table Book (1827, I, col. 678), a young woman describes having recently seen, in a Devonshire lane, 'a man running at full speed, with his hat in one hand, and a stick in the other'; he was trying to kill a butterfly, the first he had seen that year, because 'they say that a body will have cruel bad luck if a ditn'en kill a furst a zeeth'. In Lincolnshire, anyone who crushed the first butterfly of the year underfoot would crush all his enemies that year. A related omen was that if the first butterfly you see is white, you will eat white bread all year (implying enough money for good food); but if it is brown, then you will eat brown bread, i.e. be unlucky and poor (Opie and Tatem, 1989: 51).
   Butterflies and moths were associated with death, sometimes merely as *omens, sometimes as the soul or *ghost (Opie and Tatem, 1989: 266-7). In Devon and parts of Yorkshire they were thought to be souls of *unbaptized babies (Radford, Radford, and Hole, 1961: 77-8).
   See also *wasps.

A Dictionary of English folklore. . 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Butterflies — Single par Michael Jackson extrait de l’album Invincible Sortie 2002 Enregistrement 1997 à 2001 Durée 4:40 Genre …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Butterflies — Butterfly But ter*fly , n.; pl. {Butterflies}. [Perh. from the color of a yellow species. AS. buter fl[=e]ge, buttor fle[ o]ge; cf. G. butterfliege, D. botervlieg. See {Butter}, and {Fly}.] (Zo[ o]l.) A general name for the numerous species of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • butterflies — (Roget s 3 Superthesaurus) n. anxiety, tension, nerves, jitters, unease, nervousness, nausea, *shakes, *cold sweat, nervous anticipation …   English dictionary for students

  • butterflies — but·ter·fly || bÊŒtÉ™flaɪ n. any of a number of winged insects of the order Lepidoptera having long slender bodies and four colorful wings; butterfly stroke (Swimming); person who is in constant pursuit of pleasure …   English contemporary dictionary

  • butterflies — informal a fluttering and nauseous sensation felt in the stomach when one is nervous. → butterfly …   English new terms dictionary

  • BUTTERFLIES — …   Useful english dictionary

  • Butterflies \x26 Hurricanes — Butterflies Hurricanes «Butterflies Hurricanes» Сингл Muse из альбома «Absolution» Выпущен 20 сентября …   Википедия

  • Butterflies and Hurricanes — «Butterflies Hurricanes» Сингл Muse …   Википедия

  • Butterflies and Hurricanes — Single par Muse extrait de l’album Absolution Pays  Royaume Uni …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Butterflies and Hurricanes — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda «Butterflies and Hurricanes» Sencillo de Muse del álbum Absolution Publicación 20 de septiembre de 2004 ( …   Wikipedia Español