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Is the Leap Year full of bad omens? 

by Deanna Macaranas

FEBRUARY 29 happens every once in a leap year and because of that, the idea of being on that specific date might seem surreal for many people.

Just like every day in a year—the leap year is something that we’ll only get to see once a year. However, the cycle of leap year is something that you wouldn’t see yearly as it only happens every four years.

According to PAGASA’s astronomer Citing Mario Raymundo—leap year happens to sync the calendar with the astronomical year. 

Raymundo stated that since the complete rotation of earth takes about 365.25 days—there will be an extra .25, causing the extra day to accumulate every four years. 

Since the date of February 29 seemingly holds a mysterious aura around its number—a lot of people from different cultures have created their own set superstitions to believe.

Don’t tie the knot on in this specific date

In the countries of Greece and Italy, getting married on a leap year is considered as ‘unlucky.’

According to the Greeks, getting married within the date of leap year is more likely to lead to divorces. They also hold a belief on where the lovers are destined to be unhappy if they were to separate during the leap year.

Meanwhile in Italy—it is believed by Italians that the day is when women act erratic and unpredictable. 

People who are born in a leap are destined to be unlucky

In Scotland, there’s a belief that people who are born on the date of February 29 are set to encounter immense hardship. Aside from this, it is also believed that the leap year is considered as a bad year for farmers.

Reports of this superstition are associated with the reports linking to the increased number of deaths in that particular year..

Casting the bad luck away

Coming from a Taiwanese tradition—it is said that the elders are likely to experience bad luck during leaps. In order to counter this bad luck, married daughters of the elders would visit their parents during the leap year. 

From there, they would bring them a dish of pig trotter soup with the belief of it having to bring good fortune and longevity to the household.

But is it all about being unlucky? 

While the idea of being born in the leap year is associated with the idea of ‘bad luck,’ there are still some cultures that believe that shooting their shot during the leap year can bring them luck.

From the rooted belief of St. Brigid and St. Patrick, single women can shoot their shot by proposing to their male counterpart. Since the date also serves as Bachelor’s Day, proposals is considered as a fun-filled tradition worldwide.

As for being born on the leap year—there are some people that view the idea of being born on February 29 as unique. 

According to natal astrology website—being born on February 29 holds 1 in 1,461, making it rare for most people.

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