The History Of Halloween

By Grace Miller and Jubilee Lettieri

Halloween all started about 2,000 years ago in Ireland, when it originally was a Celtic festival to honor the dead. The meaning of Halloween is All Hallows’ Eve. People would celebrate with bonfires and would wear costumes to scare off the spirits. Now in more modern days, people have started going door to door in festive costumes and getting sweet treats. There are many popular traditions to this highly known holiday such as, trick-or-treating, carving pumpkins, wearing costumes ,and scary decorations.

Jack-o-lanterns

th-49Jack-o-lanterns go way back in history, but it wasn’t always a pumpkin. Pumpkins did not exist in Ireland except that the name of jack-o-lanterns comes from an Irish story about a man named Stingy Jack. In Ireland, large potatoes and turnips were used to substitute for a pumpkin. Immigrants migrated this theme into America many, many years ago. It will serve as a tradition for many years to come as well. Jack-o-lanterns became a symbol of celebrating this wonderful, spooky, joyous festival/holiday.

th-50Trick or Treating

Trick-or-treating probably dates back to the early All Souls’ Day parades in England. Poor citizens would beg for food, and families would give them pastries called “soul cakes”, in return they promised to pray for the family’s dead relatives. Giving out soul cakes was encouraged by the church as a way to substitute the ancient history of leaving food and wine for roaming spirits. The history which was referred to as “going a-souling” was eventually taken by children who would visit the houses in their neighborhood and be given ale, food, and money. Now in the 21st century, people go to haunted houses, parties, and go trick-or-treating. When people go trick-or-treating now a days, they usually get candy!

Costumes

Costumes are a big part of celebrating who we are and what we are pretending to be on the one special evening of Halloween. When some think of halloween, spooky costumes are the main thing they think of. Vampires, ghosts, mummies, werewolves, zombies, and many more are common. Now there are thousands of costumes to choose from which include, animals, food, people(idols and celebrities), and multiple others. Costumes began when adults would dress up to go to masquerade parties. They would wear costumes and masks to disguise themselves. But over the years costumes have become more extreme, exiting, expensive, and more scary!

Over the years, this holiday has majorly changed, but the main tradition still sticks within. The costumes, jack-o-lanterns, and trick-or-treating are all things that will not change for years and years to come. Happy Halloween!

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