“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”
They’ve been ‘beautiful’, they’ve been ‘big’ and they’ve been ‘unusual’. Today we have the number seven, another of what are known as ‘significant’ numbers, so-called because of their use and the beliefs surrounding them.
The number seven is the most mystical of all numbers. It is considered by a great many people to be ‘lucky’.
It is a number that is mentioned many times in the Bible where it indicates perfection and has its roots in ancient Jewish history.
In the Old Testament for example,
- The Creation established the pattern of a seven day week.
- The seventh day was a day of rest.
- Land was to lie fallow every seventh year to allow it to recover its nutrients.
- Noah led the clean animals into the ark in sets of seven pairs for each species.
- Solomon took seven years to build the temple in Jerusalem.
- The Torah mentions that the Sabbatical, or holy year, occurred every seven years.
- The Israelites were told to march around the walls of Jericho seven times, and their enemies would be defeated.
- The symbolic Jewish candlestick has seven branches.
This view of the number seven continued in the New Testament.
- A disciple asked Jesus, “How many times should we forgive our brethren?” Jesus replied, “70 times 7”.
- Revelations 1:16 states, “He had in his right hand seven stars.”
- Also in Revelations, the number of seals is seven.
And beyond the Bible, we find the number seven in other religions and societies.
- The ancient Greeks considered the number seven to be lucky. They believed it to be the perfect number.
- In ancient Egypt there were seven paths to heaven.
- In ancient Babylon there were seven branches on their tree of life.
- The Arabs carried on this belief and built seven holy temples.
- The Goths made sure they worshiped the seven deities.
- The Japanese also had seven gods. (In 1995, to celebrate the Japanese Emperor’s seven year reign 17 runners ran 7,777 meters round the imperial palace at 7 minutes past seven on the 7th day of the 7th month.)
- The Chinese saw seven as the number governing female life.
- Even the Scottish Masons made sure the number seven had relevance in their rites, and their aprons were made with seven tassels on them.
In the US too there are examples of the occurrence of the number seven.
- The Founding Fathers declared independence from Britain during the seventh month.
- There are seven articles to the US constitution.
- And the city of Washington D.C. was built on the 77th longitude.
The number still occurs because of it being thought lucky such as the drink 7-Up and the Boeing airplanes which are always 7?7.
Then there are the Seven Wonders of the world.
The original seven wonders were:
- Great Pyramid of Giza
- Hanging Gardens of Babylon
- Statue of Zeus at Olympia
- Temple of Artemis at Ephesus
- Mausoleum at Halicarnassus
- Colossus of Rhodes
- Lighthouse of Alexandria
(The earliest lists had the Ishtar Gate as the seventh wonder of the world instead of the Lighthouse of Alexandria.)
In 2001 an initiative was started by the Swiss corporation New7Wonders Foundation to choose the New7Wonders of the World from a selection of 200 existing monuments.
Twenty-one finalists were announced January 1, 2006. Egyptians were not happy that the only surviving original wonder, the Great Pyramid of Giza, would have to compete with the likes of the Statue of Liberty, the Sydney Opera House, and other landmarks, calling the project absurd. In response, Giza was named an honorary Candidate.
The results, announced on July 7, 2007, in Lisbon, Portugal, were:
- Great Wall of China
- Petra (Jordan)
- Christ the Redeemer (Brazil)
- Machu Picchu (Peru)
- Chichen Itza (Mexico)
- Colosseum (Italy)
- Taj Mahal (India)
There have also been several atempts to compile a list of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. The main candidates include:
- Grand Canyon
- Great Barrier Reef
- Harbor of Rio de Janeiro
- Mount Everest
- Parícutin volcano
- Victoria Falls
And, of course, in the field of entertainment the number seven has featured in several memorable movies, examples of which include:
- Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
- Seven Brides for Seven Brothers
- The Magnificent Seven
- The Seven Samurai
- The Seventh Seal
- Seven Pounds
20 thoughts on “Significant Number Factoid Friday – Seven”
What about 7-11 stores? Lucky 7 with dice at craps. Mickey Mantle wore 7. Ah yes – the 7 chakras (a great Mannheim Steamroller album). Oh heck – as you well know, a post on 7 could be a series!
Thanks for commenting. You are absolutely right, it could be a long series. I was even at 6s and 7s wondering what to include.
Why is 6 afraid of 7?
Because 7 ate 9……
LOL I like it. Thank you.
7th heaven..or is that just an old t.v. show…lol
Thanks for your comment. It might well be both. I think this blog post would have been at least 15 feet long if I included everything. 7 is a popular number apparently!
it seems so..
All days in Genesis have an ending except for the 7th.
Thanks for commenting. I know a few JWs who’d love you for that comment. But I know what you mean.
The Israelites were to count 7 years times 7 years (49th year a Sabbath year) and the 50th year was a jubilee, another Sabbath year.
I think you could easily do an entire post about references to 7 in the Bible. It is, as we say, a significant number.
Luke’s genealogy of Jesus has 77 names from God to Jesus.
Very good. And the first sentence of the first verse of the Old Testament, in the original Hebrew, has 7 words. The first sentence of the first verse of the Gospel of Mark, which was the first to be written, also has 7 words.
Nobody would go the an 11, but just maybe a 7-11. The seven makes the difference.
LOL a clever marketing ploy perhaps?
Hmm, no mention of the BMW 7-series for us car nuts. And what about Blakes 7 for us sci-fi fans? Or the 7 iterations of the starship Enterprise in Star Trek? (NCC-1701 [another 7], suffixes A-E, NX-01), or the landing party of 6 plus one to transport, or the shuttle Galileo from the original series, which bore the number 7? The A-7 attack jet carried a large part of the ground-support missions in Vietnam, BB-7 was the first US battleship to bear the name of my home state (Illinois), and CV-7 (the USS Wasp), who was literally one-of-a-kind and the last US carrier built under the Washington and London Naval Treaty limits.
Rats! I should’ve left off one, so I could’ve given you seven items! 😀
Good list. But you forgot the most important one of all, the Johnny Seven rifle!!!
I have honestly never heard of this. Must’ve been a bit “old” for me, as I was all of 1.5 years old in the summer of 1964!
They were still going strong for years after that. I looked longing at them in Woolworths but could never afford one 😦 Come to think of it they’d probably call that a deprived childhood these days LOL
I used to have a 3/4 scale M-1 Garand that shot red bullets with a spring. It disappeared decades ago. Now the thing would probably be worth hundreds, if not thousands! (Sigh.)