Halloween traditions are known to have began over 2000 years ago with the Celts. The traditional festival was called Samhain (pronounced sow-in), and was celebrated at the end of October and first of November. This time was their new year. During this time, they would celebrate their ancestors, and ward off evil spirits by holding bonfires and dressing in scary costumes.
As time went on, the Romans conquered the Celtic territory and adopted some of their ways, including the celebration of Samhain. The Romans used this time to celebrate the passing of the dead and to honor the Roman goddess of fruit and trees, Pomona. The popular game of bobbing for apples was introduced.
By the 800s, the Christianity influence started to spread, and they, too, began adapting the Samhain traditions with some twists.
I will be writing a much larger article this weekend on my website if anyone is interested in further history and traditions regarding Halloween. How did Jack O' Lanterns evolve? What about candy? Stay tuned to find out more!
Photo credits: Teresa Kenney.