About Halloween

By | Oct 30, 2009

Halloween has many different names such as: All Hallows Eve, Samhain, All Hallowtide, The Feast of the Dead, Haloween and All Saints Eve.

All Hallows Eve has its origins as a pagan celebration that dates back over 2000 years to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain. The Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred and on the night of October 31 the ghosts of the dead returned to earth. The tradition of wearing masks deals with hiding from the dead.

Orange and Black are used as Halloween colors. Orange represents the fall harvest while black is for the coming dark winter.

When the Irish immigrants came to America in the 1800s They brought with them the traditions of Halloween and the use of Jack-O-Lanterns. The lantern, carved from a turnip, potato, or beet and lit with a burning lump of coal or a candle, represented the souls of the departed loved ones and were placed in windows or set on porches to welcome the deceased. They also served as protection against malevolent spirits or goblins freed from the dead. Since turnips and gourds were not as readily available in the Americas the pumpkin was used as a replacement.

One possible origin of Trick-or-Treat may come from the Druids who believed that the dead would play tricks on mankind and cause panic and destruction. They had to be appeased, so country folk would give the Druids food as they visited their homes. Another is an old Irish practice of going door to door to items in preparation for the festival of St. Columb Kill.

Candy doesn’t have to be the only treats given out to those young ghouls and goblins that come knocking on the door. A couple of welcomed but not ordinary treats are packages of Hot Chocolate (great for those cool night) and small bags of microwave popcorn.


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