Missy Elliott Reveals This Superstition She'll Never Change

Black cats get a bad rap, and they have throughout history, yet the relationship between felines and humans dates back centuries. In ancient Egypt, cats were considered divine symbols. They also make an appearance in Greek mythology, per History, which reported Hecate, the Greek goddess of magic and witchcraft, is associated with black cats. 

Black cats were linked to the occult as far back as the 13th century when Pope Gregory IX declared the animals "an incarnation of Satan," as author Layla Morgan Wilde wrote in her book, "Black Cats Tell: True Tales And Inspiring Images" via History. One of the oldest superstitions about the dark feline is that if you cross paths with a black cat, expect bad luck.

So, it's perhaps not too surprising that in these modern days, there are plenty of people who still believe in superstitions about black cats. One of those people is super-star rapper, producer, and songwriter, Missy Elliot. In a 1997 interview with Rolling Stone, the rapper was asked a question by interviewer Jancee Dunn: "Some people don't ask the Lord for anything, they just thank him. Do you think that's superstitious?" Elliot's answer has followed her around through the decades like a pet feline.

Missy Elliot Believes Black Cats Are Bad Luck

Missy Elliot told Rolling Stone, "If you believe a black cat is bad luck, people think you're crazy, but plenty of times if I see a black cat down my street, I turn around and go the other way," she said. "Even if I'm late. I'll be late for the airport and be in a limo, and if I see a black cat, I'll be like 'Sir, you have to turn around and go down the next street.'" 

It's unclear where Elliot developed her fear of black cats, but plenty of people are raised with superstitions. Some say it's bad luck if you walk under a ladder, step on a sidewalk crack, or open an umbrella inside, yet four-leaf clovers, horseshoes, and ladybugs are considered good luck. But if you do a little digging, it turns out Elliot's fears are unfounded. As noted, all cats were sacred to the ancient Egyptians. And according to the Carnegie Museum of Natural History, sometimes black cats appear in folklore as good omens. In Welsh folklore, for example, black cats were said to have a knack for accurately predicting the weather. They were also believed to bring good fortune into the home.