When you see a one-eyed cat …

“When you see a one-eyed cat, spit on your thumb, stamp it in the palm of your hand, and make a wish. The wish will come true,” says an American superstition.

From what I’ve read, the one-eyed cat used to be associated with witches because “the Evil One could create nothing perfect.” And saliva was believed to act as a medical and magical prophylactic against sores, growths, and the Evil Eye. So perhaps spitting on your thumb and stamping it in the palm of your God-given hand reversed the evil, unlucky omen of the one-eyed cat and gave it power to grant a wish. Just a guess.


2 thoughts on “When you see a one-eyed cat …

  1. I know this one as stamping a one-eyed car, not a cat. You don’t spit on your thumb though; you lick it like a stamp, so I suppose that’s where the name comes from. My mother taught it to us over 50 years ago, so I thought it might date back to at least WWII. I’ve always wondered what the true origin might be. We all still do it every time we see a one-eyed car (heck, I stamped 3 cars just this morning on the way to work!).

  2. A clarification on this with the car:

    Curl your right hand into a fist, but with the thumb sticking out. Lick the thumb. “Stamp” the center of your left palm with your right thumb. Then use the bottom side (along the right side of the hand) of your right hand to smash the “stamp” into your left hand.

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