DYK: Why do we tell performers to break a leg before they perform?

DID YOU KNOW that “break a leg” comes from the superstitious age. It was once thought that jealous forces, always present, are only too anxious to spoil any venture so people looked for ways to divert the jealous forces.

It was thought that a good luck wish would alert and provoke them to do their evil work, while a curse would make them turn their attention elsewhere.

The underlying principle in the saying “Break a leg” is the belief that if you wish evil, then good will come instead.

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