An old European belief tells that the souls of dead children were carried by frogs and that as a result it was very unlucky to kill one. Usually the child was thought to have died when very young. Some country folk in Europe believed that the strange croaking call made by the animal were the strained sounds of the child attempting to speak. To hear this call during the day was thought to be an omen of rain.
Frogs are generally seen as lucky creatures. To have one jump into the house was believed to bode well for the entire household, whilst rubbing their skin against any skin blemish was said to provide a definite cure but only when the frog finally took it’s last breath dieing from natural causes. Some though believed that this would only happen if the frog was speared, then the procedure commenced until the frog died.
One rather gruesome belief and practice no doubt decimated frog populations in France during the Middle Ages. It was once thought that a precious stone could be found in the head of any frog and hence these poor creatures became the desire of many people, but there was a draw back. It as said that only men of virtue could remove it! Perhaps this is one reason why the French dish ‘frog’s legs’ became so popular.