how did halloween start?

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
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    What happened was long ago people believed that spirits would haunt everyone on Halloween so the people dressed up in scary coustumes to scare away the spirits now everybody knows thats not true but we continue the holiday for fun

  • 1 decade ago

    The Celts, who lived 2,000 years ago in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom, and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1. This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death. Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred. On the night of October 31, they celebrated Samhain, when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth. In addition to causing trouble and damaging crops, Celts thought that the presence of the otherworldly spirits made it easier for the Druids, or Celtic priests, to make predictions about the future. For a people entirely dependent on the volatile natural world, these prophecies were an important source of comfort and direction during the long, dark winter.

    To commemorate the event, Druids built huge sacred bonfires, where the people gathered to burn crops and animals as sacrifices to the Celtic deities.

    During the celebration, the Celts wore costumes, typically consisting of animal heads and skins, and attempted to tell each other's fortunes. When the celebration was over, they re-lit their hearth fires, which they had extinguished earlier that evening, from the sacred bonfire to help protect them during the coming winter.

    By A.D. 43, Romans had conquered the majority of Celtic territory. In the course of the four hundred years that they ruled the Celtic lands, two festivals of Roman origin were combined with the traditional Celtic celebration of Samhain.

    The first was Feralia, a day in late October when the Romans traditionally commemorated the passing of the dead. The second was a day to honor Pomona, the Roman goddess of fruit and trees. The symbol of Pomona is the apple and the incorporation of this celebration into Samhain probably explains the tradition of "bobbing" for apples that is practiced today on Halloween.

    By the 800s, the influence of Christianity had spread into Celtic lands. In the seventh century, Pope Boniface IV designated November 1 All Saints' Day, a time to honor saints and martyrs. It is widely believed today that the pope was attempting to replace the Celtic festival of the dead with a related, but church-sanctioned holiday. The celebration was also called All-hallows or All-hallowmas (from Middle English Alholowmesse meaning All Saints' Day) and the night before it, the night of Samhain, began to be called All-hallows Eve and, eventually, Halloween. Even later, in A.D. 1000, the church would make November 2 All Souls' Day, a day to honor the dead. It was celebrated similarly to Samhain, with big bonfires, parades, and dressing up in costumes as saints, angels, and devils. Together, the three celebrations, the eve of All Saints', All Saints', and All Souls', were called Hallowmas.

  • 1 decade ago

    Like the dates of a number of major holidays (including Christmas), Halloween can be traced, at least in part, to an ancient pagan celebration. The winter festival “Samhain” was celebrated on or near October 31 by the ancient Celts. Samhain was a pagan tradition that commemorated the end of harvest, the beginning of winter, and the recognition of the physical cycle of death, which included crops, animals, and humans.

    In conjunction with this festival, many pagans believed that the human spirits of the recent dead would not pass on to their final resting place in the next world until being placated with gifts. The restless spirit’s “trick” could be avoided only if appropriately “treated,” thus originated the present-day Halloween practice of children dressing up like spirits and arriving at the front door chanting or demanding “trick or treat.”

  • 1 decade ago

    Halloween or Hallowe'en is a tradition celebrated on the night of October 31, most notably by children dressing in costumes and going door-to-door collecting sweets, fruit, and other treats. Apart from this trick-or-treating, there are many other traditional Halloween activities. Some of these include costume parties, watching horror films, going to "haunted" houses, and traditional autumn activities such as hayrides, some of these even "haunted". A more complete coverage of Halloween customs can be found at Halloween traditions.

    Halloween originated under a different name as a Pagan festival among the Celts of Ireland and Great Britain with Irish, Scots, Welsh and other immigrants transporting versions of the tradition to North America in the nineteenth century. Most other Western countries have embraced Halloween as a part of American pop culture in the late twentieth century.

    Halloween is celebrated in most parts of the Western world, most commonly in the United States, Canada, the UK, Ireland, Peru , and with increasing popularity in Australia and New Zealand. In recent years, Halloween has also been celebrated in parts of Western Europe, such as Belgium, France and Spain.

    The term Halloween, and its older rendering Hallowe'en, is shortened from All-hallow-even, as it is the evening of/before "All Hallows' Day"[1] (also known as "All Saints' Day"). The holiday was a day of religious festivities in various northern European Pagan traditions, until Popes Gregory III and Gregory IV moved the old Christian feast of All Saints Day from May 13 to November 1. In the ninth century, the Church measured the day as starting at sunset, in accordance with the Florentine calendar. Although we now consider All Saints (or Hallows) day to be on the day after Halloween, they were, at that time, considered to be the same day.

    In Ireland, the name was All Hallows' Eve (often shortened to Hallow Eve), and though seldom used today, it is still a well-accepted label, albeit somewhat esoteric. The festival is also known as Samhain or Oíche Shamhna to the Irish, Calan Gaeaf to the Welsh, Allantide to the Cornish and Hop-tu-Naa to the Manx. Halloween is also called Pooky Night in some parts of Ireland, presumably named after the púca, a mischievous spirit.

    Many European cultural traditions hold that Halloween is one of the liminal times of the year when spirits can make contact with the physical world and when magic is most potent (e.g. Catalan mythology about witches, Irish tales of the Sídhe).

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  • 1 decade ago

    Halloween is a pagan holiday.and it started in the begining of time.the celts were the ones that created this holiday in the means of blessing the dying God.when they would celebrate the day with bonfire and food.they would chant to the dying God and praise Him.and also it was the ending of the harvest,the begining of winter.and they would prepare for the winter months to come.

    Hecate's witch)O(

  • 1 decade ago

    MMMMM.....all I know about Halloween is that its the Devils B-day. If you celebrate Halloween its just like celebrating the Devils B-day.

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