|Commons Wikimedia: Unidentified Argiope|
It is sometimes known as the St Andrew's Cross spider.
Tomorrow is St Andrew's Day - more of that tomorrow.
There are some odd superstitions associated with the eve of St Andrew's Day, mostly connected with finding a mate.
I don't believe any of them, but it's fun to speculate how these traditions started.
- ARE YOU A SINGLE WOMAN? Do you want to marry? Then today is the time to listen out for barking dogs and note where they are. Why? Because your future husband will come from that direction - so they say.
- NOT HEARING ANY BARKING DOGS? Never mind. Ask St Andrew's help. Sleep naked tonight and your future husband will visit your dreams - so they say.
- TOO COLD TO SLEEP NAKED IN NOVEMBER? Then wrap up warm and sit up to midnight. At midnight look for a sign that you will have a husband - this might be difficult to identify.
- YOU HAVEN'T SEEN A SIGN? THEN MAKE ONE. Throw your shoe at a door. If the shoe falls with the toe pointing towards the exit you'll be married within the year - so they say.
- HAS ALL THAT MADE YOU HUNGRY? Why not eat an apple? But first peel it carefully, so you remove the whole peel without any break. then throw the peel over your shoulder. As the peel lies on the floor what letter does it most resemble? That will be the first letter of your husband's name - so they say.
Why do such superstitions persist? Do you know any other St Andrew's Eve traditions or variations of the above?