Why do we say \’White Rabbits\’ at the beginning of each month? As I understand it, this expression is used to safeguard the speaker against the consequences of that other traditional slogan \”pinch, punch, first of the month\”. I wasn\’t aware it was still done. However, it was a common belief among RAF bomber aircrew during WW2 that saying \”white rabbits\” the VERY FIRST thing upon waking would protect oneself. The courage of these heroes cannot be doubted, yet even they looked to superstition for protection.
I have always understood it to derive from an ancient fertility charm for women to invoke pregnancy-seeing as how rabbits are so prolific.
On the first day of any month, you can t get far without somebody accosting you with the expression Бpinch punchБ. If you grew up in a superstitious household, getting in first with your pinch and a punch will have been somewhat of a sport for your whole life Б but have you ever wondered where the tradition came from? Have you ever wondered why people say white rabbits?
Why do people say pinch punch on the first day of the month? As with all superstitions, there are usually a number of theories. Firstly, people used to believe in witchcraft, and back in old England times, many people believed in witches. Salt was thought to be a weakness of a witch – so the pinch part is pinching of the salt, and the punch part was to banish the witch. Or, a theory from a across the pond involves George Washington. When he was president, apparently he met local Indian tribes on the first day of each month and would supply fruit punch with an added pinch of salt.
Apparently, this became known as Бpinch and punch on the first of the month. What about the white rabbits? Other phrases chucked about on the first of every month include Бwhite rabbitsБ Б and the words supposedly bring good luck. БWhite rabbits, white rabbitsБ was recorded as far back as 1909 in the Notes and Queries book. The quote reads: My two daughters are in the habit of saying Rabbits! on the first day of each month.
The word must be spoken aloud, and be the first word said in the month. БIt brings luck for that month. Other children, I find, use the same formula. According to the playground rules, a pinch and a punch needs to be followed immediately with the words, White rabbits, no return Б so that you can t be pinched back. Some claim that the term was widely used among RAF bomber aircrew during WWII, who would say white rabbits to protect themselves when they woke up.