The number thirteen carries significant symbolism, most commonly associated with superstition and considered unlucky. It often symbolizes disorder, irregularity, and disruption, standing in contrast to the number twelve, which is traditionally associated with completeness and order (e.g., twelve months in a year, twelve zodiac signs). In Western cultures, particularly, thirteen is synonymous with fear and is avoided due to its association with death and misfortune, as seen in the avoidance of a thirteenth floor in many buildings or a thirteenth row in airplanes.

Thirteen in Dreams

In the realm of dreams, the number thirteen might symbolize uncertainties, challenges, and transformations. Encountering this number in a dream may reflect underlying anxieties, fears, or unresolved tensions. It might also represent a transitional phase in the dreamer’s life, pointing to disruptions that could lead to growth and renewal. Psychologically, dreaming of the number thirteen could be indicative of the individual’s state of mind, possibly revealing inner conflicts, suppressed emotions, or a desire for change and liberation.

Thirteen in Myths and Folklore

While thirteen is less prominent in myths, legends, and fairy tales compared to other numbers, when it does appear, it typically conveys themes of upheaval and transformation. In some cultures, it might be associated with the lunar cycle and the unseen, mysterious aspects of existence, emphasizing its connection to the feminine divine and the cycles of life and death. Although largely overshadowed by its negative connotations in Western lore, the number thirteen in some traditions and stories might also symbolize the unknown, the mystical, and the transformative, serving as a reminder of the unseen forces and mysteries of the universe.

Reviewed by Olex Lys, enthusiastic in the field of symbolism research, and in the psychological interpretation of dreams.


Encyclopedia of Symbols

About the Author

Symbolopedia is an encyclopedia of symbol meanings. Although we tend to favor a scientific explanation of symbols, it's important to keep in mind that symbols operate within the realm of the subconscious, leaving room for a touch of imagination to persist. Our articles include sources for further learning about each symbol.

View Articles