Thirteen Things You Did Not Know About Halloween

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dark-17604_6401. This very famous American holiday traces its roots back to Celtic Ireland, originally celebrated in around 4000 BC.

2.  Halloween is celebrated at the time of the final harvests of the year, when animals stock up food for the winter months ahead, the sun sets earlier and rises later, and the trees shed their leaves. With the end of harvesting season, most animals resort to a state of hibernation, essentially “dying” until its annual rebirth the following spring.

3. Samhain (pronounced Sah-ween), is a festival celebrated at this time of the year. It was the biggest and most significant holiday of the Celtic year.  The Celts believed Samhain was a time when the wall between our world and the paranormal world was porous and spirits could get through. Because of this belief, it was common for the Celts to wear costumes and masks during the festival to ward off or confuse any evil spirits.

4. Trick or treat originates from a historic tradition where people put bowls of food outside their homes for roaming ghosts as a means of protection. Another English tradition had people making cakes for the wandering souls, and people went “soulin'” for these “soul cakes”, and it was not just the children but the adults as well who went door –to –door asking for food and drinks in exchange for a song or dance.

5. The Bonfire, which is a significant part of Halloween, originated during the pre-Halloween sacred festival of Samhain. Bonfires were lit to ensure that the sun would return after the long, hard winter. Druid priest would throw the bones of deceased cattle onto the fires and so the name, “bone fire” was created, which later evolved to become ‘Bonfire’ as known today.

6. An Irish legend says that jack-o’-lanterns are named after a man called Jack who could not go to heaven or hell and was forced to walk the earth forever with only a coal from hell to light his lantern. Unlike the current tradition of carving pumpkins, the first jack-o’-lantern was a turnip.

7. Harry Houdini 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.
8. Salem, Massachusetts, and Anoka, Minnesota, are the self-proclaimed Halloween capitals of the world.

9. Cats have always been associated with black magic and evil to the extent that some believe black cats accompany witches. In the US black cats are considered as a symbol of bad luck. While in the UK white cats are thought to bring bad luck.

10. Often in movies we see a witch flying across a full moon on the Halloween night. However, a full moon is a rare phenomenon to occur in reality. The most recent full moon on Halloween was back in 2001, and the next full moon on this day won’t occur until 2020.

11. Halloween, often associated with magic has some unusual beliefs like , if a person holds a mirror and walks backwards down the stairs to the basement, the face that appears in the mirror will be their next lover.

12. This festival sees Americans buying almost 90 million pounds of chocolate. That’s enough Hershey’s bars to wrap around the world nearly 3.25 times! However, snickers remain the top favourite.

13. Black and orange colours are predominantly used in costumes, decorations and all things Halloween represent the two sides of the festival. Black represents the dark mystical side of it and orange refers to the end of the harvest season.

 

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