Halloween and Its History & Origin

by Elen Stone
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Halloween is one among those traditional holidays that is still celebrated today.

Straddling the line between fall and winter, paucity and plenty, life and death, Halloween is a time of celebration, fun and superstition.

Halloween and Its History & OriginIt comes only second to Christmas in terms of popularity. Most of the people celebrate the holiday season without knowing where Halloween actually coming from. Knowing the origin and history of Halloween can make it more exciting and interesting.

There are many people who look at this holiday season as a time for fun and enjoyment. They celebrate and have fun by putting on spooky or funny costumes, wearing masks or make-ups, and doing “trunk or treat”. Many of us also throw themed parties or organize events for Halloween. But, there are still a part of us who regard Halloween as the time of goblins, superstitions, witches, ghosts, zombies and other evil boo-sports, which must be avoided.

“Exploring” the history of Halloween:

There are many versions stories related to the source of Halloween.

Halloween and Its History & OriginThe Halloween’s history dates back to October 31st, which is the last day of Celtic calendar and the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain, when people would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off roaming ghosts and honor the dead.

This “pagan holiday” (the culture of Halloween) dates back to the era of the Druids, a Celtic culture established in Britain, Ireland, France and Northern Europe. Its roots mainly lay in the feast of Samhain, which was celebrated annually on 31st October. Samhain implies the end of summer or November. Samhain was celebrated as a harvest festival with several huge sacred bonfires, which marks the end of one Celtic year and the beginning another.

It was the firm belief of the Celts that the souls of dead, wandered the villages and streets at night. As all the spirits were considered to be friendly and harmless, people tried to pacify them with gifts and treats so that the next year’s crops would be in abundant.

The Haunted History of Halloween (Full Documentary)

By 43 A.D., the Roman Empire had conquered the majority of Celtic territory. In the course of the 400 years that they ruled the Celtic lands, two festivals of Roman origin were combined with the traditional Celtic celebration of Samhain. The first was Feralia, a day in late October when the Romans traditionally commemorated the passing of the dead. The second was a day to honor Pomona, the Roman goddess of fruit and trees. The symbol of Pomona is the apple and the incorporation of this celebration into Samhain probably explains the tradition of “bobbing” for apples that is practiced today on Halloween.

Halloween and Its History & OriginThough different cultures view the occasion in a different way, the main practice and culture remains the same throughout.

Halloween was originally known as “All Hallows Eve” and it dates back to more than 2000 years back. “All Hallows Eve” is the eve before All Saints Day, which the Christians created to convert the Pagans. It is celebrated on the first day of November.

Over time, “All Hallows Eve” turned to “Halloween” and became a secular, community-based event characterized by child-friendly such as trick-or-treating or other adults’ spooky or funny activities such as visiting haunted houses or organizing scaring parties.

In a number of countries around the world, as the days grow shorter and the nights get colder, people continue to usher in the winter season with gatherings, costumes and sweet treats.

This custom later evolved into the trick-or-treating of Halloween.

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