Rabbit's Foot

Do you carry a rabbit's foot for luck? If so, is it always in your left pocket? Are you sure it was the rabbit's left hind foot? And, most important of all, was the animal killed at the full of the moon by a cross-eyed person?

In spite of all these requirements for luck most rabbit-foot charms today are only small front paws. But thousands of people never go without them.

The first superstitions developed about the European Hare, a perfectly harmless animal. He's larger than his cousin the rabbit, having powerful hind legs and tips of black on his long ears.

The ancients noticed many things about these timid creatures that they couldn't explain. Because of this they thought of them as both good and evil. They saw how they came out at night to feed, how they gathered in bands on clear moonlit nights to play as if influenced by the moon. Another astonishing observation was that northern hares were brown in summer and white in winter.

Like the cheetah and greyhound, the hare's rear feet land in front of its forefeet when running swiftly. This was impressive to primitive men. Hares also thump the ground with their hind legs as if speaking with them. These observations about the hare's hind feet were the reasons for them becoming looked upon as powerful charms against evil forces.

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