Tuesday, 5 December 2017

In fear of pain...baguette etiquette

At dinner at our French neighbour David's last night I learned about a French superstition I was unaware of, although not from David directly but from our American friend Karen who was with us.
I had inadvertently put the bread back on the table upside down and David made a point of turning it around. This would probably have gone pretty much unnoticed as it was done fairly subtly, until Karen let us know that this,as a French superstition, could bring 'bad luck'.

This led me to wonder about the origin of this...and it took me here  to the possible answer.

"It’s fitting that France has a superstition based on bread. Apparently, putting the nation’s treasured baguette (or any loaf of bread, for that matter) upside down on a table will bring bad luck. This belief dates back to the Middle Ages, when the executioner was a very widely respected and feared man who you wouldn’t want to anger. Therefore, the baker would reserve his baguette by placing it upside down to ensure nobody else would take it. No one would be foolish enough to upset a hungry executioner. Over the years, the action became a symbol of bad luck."

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