The History of Halloween: How it all Started
Halloween is one of the most popular holidays in the U.S. and is celebrated all around the world. It is that time of the year where everything is filled with excitement, fun, and scary costumes.
Origin and History of Halloween
However, today’s Halloween is not the same as it was 2000 years ago. The history of Halloween dates back to the ancient Gaelic festival marking the end of the harvest season, called Samhain. Samhain was celebrated every year from sunset on October 31 to sunset on November 1.
On this day it was believed that the dead would rise and the deceased would wander the earth to possess life souls. In order to keep up with the tradition, Celts dressed up as monsters and ghosts and put out all the lights in their houses. They also made bonfires on October 31 and would provided sacrifices. The idea behind this was to scare away the spirits of the dead and protect themselves from being possessed.
Halloween Celebrations and Costumes
Today we celebrate Halloween as a holiday full of excitement and fun for kids as they are involved in various activities such as making Halloween costumes, trick-or-treating, telling scary Halloween stories and eating candies.
But Halloween is not for kids only. More and more adults are celebrating this holiday as well. After all, who does not want to dress up as their favorite superhero or scary monster and head out to a Halloween party?
The tradition of trick-or-treating began when the Celtic believed that fairies would to pretend to be beggars and go from door to door asking for food. People who offered them food or money were rewarded and those who didn’t give them food were cursed forever.
From this legend, we have today’s tradition. Children dress up in Halloween costumes and go trick-or-treating from house to house and receive chocolates, candies and other small treats.
5 Interesting Halloween Facts
- The first use of the word Halloween was in the early 16th century in Scotland. It was pronounced All-Hallows-Eve.
- The colors black and orange are symbols for Halloween because the orange color represents the color of autumn and pumpkins and black represents death.
- The first known mention of trick-or-treating in print in North America occurred in 1927 in Blackie, Alberta, Canada.
- Apple bobbing is a Halloween game and is played by filling a large basin or a tub with water and adding apples in the water. The challenge is players to catch the apples with their teeth while they are floating, the challenge is because apples are less dense than water.
- The first Jack O’Lanterns were actually made from turnips.