Donna Perugini Children's Author

“To Get Up On the Wrong Side of the Bed”

Wake up with a smile!

So which side is the wrong side of the bed??

According to the Henry Holt Encyclopedia, the wrong side of the bed is the left side.  It’s a superstition that goes back to the Romans.  People have been saying other  people got up on the wrong side of the bed, “awoke grouchy,” for over three centuries now.  The expression,  got up left foot forward tells the story. 

The supposedly sinister nature of the left is reflected in many English superstitions and expressions…the belief that it is unlucky to put on your left shoe first, or to walk into a house left foot first.” 

Could this be why the earlier generations were so eager to keep their children from being left-handed by forcing them to use their right hand?

“The Romans, especially Augustus Caesar, were very careful that they got up on the right side of the bed, but there is no evidence that they were less grouchy than anyone else.”

Did anyone ever accuse you of this?  Which side of the bed do you sleep on?

Taken from the Henry Holt Encyclopedia of Word and Phrase Origins by Robert Hendrickson 

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5 Responses to ““To Get Up On the Wrong Side of the Bed””

  1. 1
    Becky says:

    I guess I sleep on the right side of the bed, but not for any superstitious reason. What’s funny is I actually heard something about the CIA (and maybe the FBI too) having limited security clearance to left handed individuals- my husband was telling me that every American traitor throughout history has been left-handed. Weird, huh?

    • 1.1

      You wrote, “my husband was telling me that every American traitor throughout history has been left-handed.” I tried googling this and then Snopes.com, but no info on it.
      Do you think that the ‘left handed’ having limited security clearance was started by J. Edgar Hoover? He was strange about a lot of things! Then again it could all be just rumors. Maybe a ‘leftie’ will weigh in on this discussion.

  2. 2
    Becky says:

    Hmm…well I looked too and wasn’t able to find anything to support that. Oh well. I did find a website that listed famous lefties…among them? Our current president along with many other recent ones. So…I don’t know. Would have been interesting if it were accurate. 🙂

  3. 3

    I noticed that when he was signing documents in the media. I wonder if his mother or grandmother tried to make him use his right hand? What I read online was that before 1960, this was a common thing to do.

    Superstitions remain strong in cultures until they hear the truth and come into the light.

  4. 4
    vista print says:

    just wanted to let you know i love the blog.. added you to my rss reader

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