If you think Halloween is a uniquely American tradition, have we got a trick for you! Dressing up in a creative costume, gallivanting around in the gathering dusk to collect the best candy from the neighbors and getting together with friends for a monster ball are all beloved traditions. But the fall holiday didn’t start stateside at all. In fact, the history of Halloween dates back thousands of years to the Celtic celebration of Samhain, a hallowed festival that marked the end of the harvest season and welcomed in the new year. Samhain was also a time when the veil between the worlds of the living and the dead grew thin, so those of us with blood still running through our veins could communicate with loved ones who had passed on to the other side.
Whether or not you believe in things that go bump in the night, it’s always fun to learn a little something before you go trick-or-treating. You may realize the holiday has a much more interesting (and sometimes far spookier!) backstory than you thought. Travel back in time with us to learn what some of the very first ghostly celebrations of Halloween looked like, including the various ghoulies and ghosties people used to fear, what people used to carve in place of pumpkins and even what Valentine’s Day and Halloween have in common. We can guarantee there wasn’t a glitter pumpkin or superhero costume in sight. And if you just can’t get enough, we’ve got plenty more Halloween trivia where that came from.
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