Halloween as we know it today, is a derivation of “All Hallows’ Evening” or All Saints’ Eve. This is a yearly celebration observed in a number of countries on 31 October, the eve of the Western Christian feast of All Hallows’ Day.
It initiates the three days of Allhallowtide, the time in the liturgical year dedicated to remembering the dead, including saints (hallows), martyrs, and all the faithful departed believers.
Within Allhallowtide, the traditional focus of All Hallows’ Eve revolves around the theme of using humour and ridicule to confront the power of death. Typical festive Halloween activities include trick-or-treating (or the related “guising”), attending costume parties, decorating, carving pumpkins into jack-o’-lanterns, lighting bonfires, apple bobbing, visiting haunted house attractions, playing pranks, telling scary stories, and watching horror films (source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Halloween).
FUN FACTS ABOUT THE HISTORY OF HALLOWEEN:
The first Jack O’Lanterns were actually made from turnips.
Halloween is the second highest grossing commercial holiday after Christmas.
Samhainophobia is the fear of Halloween.
The largest pumpkin ever measured was grown by Norm Craven, who broke the world record in 1993 with a 836 lb. pumpkin.
Black and orange are typically associated with Halloween. Orange is a symbol of strength and endurance and, along with brown and gold, stands for the harvest and autumn. Black is typically a symbol of death and darkness and acts as a reminder that Halloween once was a festival that marked the boundaries between life and death.
Harry Houdini (1874-1926) was one of the most famous and mysterious magicians who ever lived. Strangely enough, he died in 1926 on Halloween night as a result of appendicitis brought on by three stomach punches
Dressing up as ghouls and other spooks originated from the ancient Celtic tradition of townspeople disguising themselves as demons and spirits. The Celts believed that disguising themselves this way would allow them to escape the notice of the real spirits wandering the streets during Samhain.
Halloween is thought to have originated around 4000 B.C., which means Halloween has been around for over 6,000 years.
Happy trick or treating!