Fangirl of men’s spirals and split jumps
Sorry for a long post as my first post, but I have some thoughts on the whole 'Green figure skating costumes are bad luck' thing!
In Western culture, green was historically considered unlucky. You come across this in the folklore of many different countries.
There seem to be a few factors which may have influenced this:
- Before the advent of modern chemical dyes and pigments, it was very difficult to produce a consistent, highly saturated green colour
- It is not a primary colour and there was a taboo against mixing pigments in the middle ages due to the association with alchemy
- Green is the colour of nature, therefore linked to fertility, which in turn links it to pagan rites, women, and sex (all things the medieval church hated!)
- The 12th century crusades invoked anti-Islamic sentiment, and the colour green was sacred to Muslims
- Later, in the 19th century green became popular but unfortunately green dyes often contained arsenic, causing sickness and even death...
There is an old Theatre superstition that actors shouldn't wear green costumes as it's unlucky.
This is commonly attributed to a 17th century actor named Moliere, who collapsed onstage in a green costume and died shortly after.
It probably has more to do with a) pre-existing European superstitions and b) the fact that early spotlights burned quicklime (hence the phrase 'in the limelight'). The limelight produced a greenish glow that washed out anyone wearing green clothes and made it difficult for the audience to see them. So, not great for theatre or dance costumes.
I actually didn't know green was considered unlucky in figure skating, but if you think about it, it does make sense.
Skating is a sport, but it overlaps with and is influenced by the performing arts, so little wonder some of the theatre/dance superstitions get passed along.It's really interesting to me that these superstitions are able to stand the test of time, and fascinating figuring out how they might have got started!
Personally, I don't believe green is unlucky and I love green skating costumes. Emerald, teal and bright Kelly green all look amazing on the ice.
No strong feelings on yellow, it's fine. My least favourite colours for skating costumes are actually pale pastels and white. They make for really beautiful costumes in and of themselves, but sometimes I feel the skater is a little lost against the white backdrop of all that ice...
Welcome to Goldenskate, Chiffon, post long and post often!
Thank you also for the interesting information, I enjoyed learning; I had no idea about Molière, (also a playwright of course) but that makes sense it would carry over. .