Every year we wear scary outfits, bob for apples and carve pumpkins on Halloween
Every year we wear scary outfits, bob for apples and carve pumpkins on Halloween - but why?
What is Halloween?
Well, Halloween, also known as All Souls’ Eve, or All Saints’ Eve, is a spooky festival observed every year in a number of countries on October 31. In 2018, Halloween falls on a Wednesday.
What is the history behind Halloween?
The origin of the festival is disputed.
Some believe it originates from the Celtic pagan festival of Samhain, meaning ’Summer’s End’ which celebrated the end of harvest season.
Gaels believed that it was a time when the walls between our world and the next became thin and porous, allowing spirits to pass through, come back to life and damage their crops. Places were set at the dinner table to appease and welcome the spirits. Gaels would also offer food and drink, and light bonfires to ward off the evil spirits.
Trick or treating
The origins of trick or treating and dressing up were in the 16th century in Ireland, Scotland and Wales where people went door-to-door in costume asking for food in exchange for a poem or song. Many dressed up as souls of the dead and were understood to be protecting themselves from the spirits by impersonating them.