Do You Celebrate Halloween?

Do You Celebrate Halloween?

Do you celebrate Halloween?

I know it’s a big thing in the USA and to a lesser extent we in the UK celebrate it too, but what is Halloween and where did it come from? I’ve been doing a bit of research to find out what it’s all about.

Halloween is one of the oldest celebrations in the world and is thought to have evolved from a pre-Christian festival called Samhain which was celebrated over 2,000 years ago. Samhain was celebrated by the Celts (people who lived in what is now the UK, Ireland and northern France) on 31st October each year. They believed that the dead returned to earth on this day.

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In latter times, Halloween has been interpreted to be the evening before All Hallows’ Day which is also known as All Saints or Hallowmas and is celebrated on 1st November, and All Souls Day which is celebrated by Christians on 2nd November.  Thus, the name Halloween comes from the full name All Hallows’ Eve meaning the evening before All Hallows Day.

Where does trick or treat come from?

Trick or Treating has its origins in ancient practices called souling and guising. In the Middle Ages in Britain, poor people would go souling on Hallowmas, 31st October which basically meant they would ask for food in exchange for saying prayers for the dead on All Souls Day which is 2nd November.

It was the Scots who first wore costumes, masks or other disguises on Hallowmas. The children believed that dressing like the evil spirits would prevent the spirits from harming them as they would mistake them for one of their own. this was known as guising.

The children would carry lanterns made out of hollow turnips from house to house asking for treats such as cakes, fruit or money.

It is thought that immigrants took the traditions to North America in the early 20th century but the term “trick or treat” appeared in print first in Canada in 1927. There doesn’t seem to be any information on why that particular term came into existence.

Where does the orange and black theme come from?

Most of us will associate orange and black as the colours of Halloween. We see pumpkins and black cats and witches hats. But why these colours, where did that come from?

Orange is an Autumn colour and associated with harvests. Black is associated with death. It is thought that the Romans, on conquering Britain, joined two of their festivals together, one to celebrate the harvests called Paloma, and the other to honour their dead called Feralia and these Roman festivals replaced Samhain and the colours were adopted.

Some fun facts about Halloween

  • Halloween is actually spelt Hallowe’en
  • All Saints Day is for all the Saints who don’t have their own dedicated day
  • A pumpkin is really a squash and comes from the same family as a Cucumber
  • About 99% of all pumpkins now sold are for jack-o-lanterns
  • The first jack-o-lanterns were made from hollowed out turnips (the scots “guising”)
  • If you see a spider on this night it could be the spirit of a dead loved one watching you.

Halloween Costumes

As already mentioned, the Scots were the first ones to wear costumes and masks on Halloween but did you know that native Americans bought the “face painting” element to the proceedings?

These days you are likely to see all manner of fire-men, pop stars or football players out on Halloween as the costumes have come to reflect the pop culture of today. But this was not what Halloween costumes were meant to be.

The idea of wearing a costume, or more usually a mask, was so that you were not recognised by a spirit or the ghost of a dead relative if you were out on All Hallows Eve.

Traditionally costumes were hand made and this is still the case in a lot of households. But if you are not particularly creative or are not good with a needle and thread there are plenty of other options for you today.

Do you celebrate Halloween?

You can choose from a wide range of Halloween costumes on Amazon such as this, old favourite, headless man. There’s nothing like an old classic is there?


image of man wearing a halloween costume

Get loads of great Halloween costume ideas here…


So there you have it, Halloween in a nutshell, so to speak. Now you can go out and celebrate with an amazing costume that you haven’t had to spend hours making, and you’ll know what it’s all about won’t you?

I hope you have enjoyed this post and the fun facts about Halloween. If you have then it would be great if you could share it with others. I have included some popular share icons so please just click away.

I’ll be back again in a few days with some other insight or useful tip or tool that I’ve found out about so make sure you look out for me. If you don’t want to miss out on anything why not subscribe to my blog and I’ll drop you a quick email when I publish something new.

Speak soon






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About the author

Lynne Thomas administrator

2 comments so far

Yoke van der MeerPosted on8:38 am - Oct 1, 2018

Good one Lynne: thanks!

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