Whether you’re trying to save space or keep the witches away, these stairs will apparently do the trick.
A popular misconception has social media users believe that a house for sale in Maryland has protection from supernatural forces literally built into the design of the house. Instead, it looks like the odd staircase is probably just an attempt to save space.
A Facebook page that chronicles unique real estate ads called Zillow Gone Wild recently featured an ad for a house in Columbia, Maryland that appears to have an unusual styled staircase. In the photos, the staircase looks like two separate staircases pushed together at different heights, creating an alternate-looking uncomfortable pattern.
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Social media users were quick to point out that these are called witch stairs, and according to folklore witches are apparently unable to climb them. An article on Reddit claims that these types of steps are popular in homes in the New England area.
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According to Reuters, however, this is not actually the case. The media reports that this style of staircase is actually known as the alternating step staircase and is used in areas that only have limited space. Apparently, the step spacing in this model can provide more rise per step and is safer in some situations than traditional stair designs.
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In addition, Reuters also reports that the concept of witch-proof staircase does not appear in historical texts.
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That hasn’t stopped Facebook users from describing the bizarre Maryland house stairs as being designed to protect owners from witches.
Regardless of the intent, a Reddit user found a flaw in the design when it comes to stopping witches. They joked, “Witches can’t climb them? Why would they do it? They have brooms!