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The James T. Callow Folklore Archive

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Superstition

How Many Children?

Thread a needle and hold it at the top, next to your left wrist. If you keep watching for awhile, the needle and thread will move all by itself. If it moves in circles, for example, three times, that means you will have three daughters someday. If it sways back and forth, that means you will have the respective number of sons. If the needle and thread don't move at all, you will be childless.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [P542, P860] crossed out. Replaced with current Classification

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): BIRTH ; Childbirth, divination ; CHILDREN ; FUTURE ; GAME ; gender ; NUMBER ; Offspring ; Ordaining ; SUPERSTITION ; TRICK

James Callow Keyword(s): Reference

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth

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Custom/Belief

Tie a diamond ring to a piece of string with the diamond hanging at the lowest point. Hold the string at eye level. Hold it steady and place someone's hand palm down under the diamond. If the ring sways from left to right that is the sign that the expectant mother will have a baby boy. If it sways to and fro, the baby will be a girl.

Data entry tech comment:

motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Reference

Original BN [F500] crossed out. Replaced with current classification

Keyword(s): BABY ; BELIEF ; BIRTH ; DIVINATION ; gender ; Old Wives Tale ; Ordaining ; SEX ; SUPERSTITION

James Callow Keyword(s): Reference

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth

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Superstition: Pregnancy

Birth Omen:

When you are pregnant, if you thread a needle and hold it over your left arm with your right hand, you can learn what the sex of the child is. If it swings across the arm, it is a boy. If it swings up and down the arm, it is a girl.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Reference

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; BIRMINGHAM

Keyword(s): BIRTH ; CHILD ; DIVINATION ; gender ; Ordaining ; PREGNANCY ; SEX

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Birth

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Ethnic: German

Superstition:

In German villages it is believed that if a boy has a dog and the dog runs away, then the boy must follow the dog in search of his fortune. If the dog returns without his master, then the boy is dead. If the dog does not return, the boy has found his fortune.

Data entry tech comment:

Motifs added by TRD

James Callow comment:

Original BN [P800] crossed out. Replaced with current classification.

Where learned: MICHIGAN ; DETROIT

Keyword(s): Boy ; DIVINATION ; DOG ; ETHNIC ; FATE ; fortune ; GERMAN ; Ordaining ; SUPERSTITION

Subject headings: BELIEF -- Mammal

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showing 4 items

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