Saturday, October 8, 2016

Witches Night, Lamswool, Snap-Apple Night, All Hallows' Eve, Summer's End, and Samhain..................

Call it whatever you like, I call it, Halloween!

I say it all the time, I love, love, love Halloween!

I love watching Hocus Pocus 30 times in October.

I love the costumes and the spooky decorations.

And, I love candy!

Here are a few interesting, lesser known facts on my favorite holiday.  I have done a few other blog posts on Halloween.  You can check those out here.

~Many people believe that Halloween dates back 6,000 years.

~The origins of Halloween are from a Celtic festival for the dead known as Samhain.  The theory is the Celts believed that ghosts of the dead could roam Earth on this day.  The Celts would leave treats out and dress in costumes to make said ghosts happy.

~The Jack-O-Lantern was invented by the Irish Celts.  Irish legend has it that there was a man named Jack (Stingy Jack).  According to the folklore, Jack was a drunk who like to play tricks on people.  Jack tricked the devil into climbing a tree.  Jack carved an image of a cross on the tree's stump which trapped the devil up the tree.

The devil promised to not temp Jack anymore if he would let him come down the
tree.  Subsequently, Jack died, and he was forbidden to enter heaven because of his evil ways, and he was forbidden to enter hell because he tricked the devil.  The devil did give him a single ember to light his way through the darkness.  It is believed that Jack still wanders Earth waving his lantern so people will come to him.

~Being fearful of Halloween is called Samhainophobia.

~Want to shake things up on Halloween?  Apparently wearing your clothes inside out and walking backwards on Halloween will summons a witch at midnight.

~Did you know the word witch comes from the Old English word wicce which translates in to wise woman.

~In Medieval Europe, it was believed that owls were witches, and if you hear an owl, it means death for someone.

~The ever famous colors black and orange are associated with Halloween.  Black represents death and darkness and orange is a symbol of endurance and strength.

~Full moons are traditionally associated with Halloween but the last full moon on Halloween occurred in 2001 and before that in 1955 so a full moon on Halloween is rare.  The next full moons are predicted to occur on Halloween in 2020, 2039, 2058, 2077, and 2096.

~Wearing a mask on Halloween is a Celtic tradition and it is believed that by wearing a mask on Halloween night the dead that visit will not recognize the living.

Halloween international:

~France and Australia are not fans of Halloween.

~There is no such thing as Halloween in Korea but they do celebrate a festival called Chuseok i.e. Korean Thanksgiving.  On this day, Koreans visit deceased relatives homes and have a meal of traditional Korean food.

~In Austria, they celebrate with a pumpkin festival in Retzer Land.  People leave water, bread, and a lighted lamp out for the dead souls will feel welcomed back to earth for the night.

~Mischief Night is celebrated in England.  This includes trick-or-treating and carving punkies (large beets, not pumpkins).

~Auf Deutsch became a thing in Germany in the 1990s with Halloween decoration going up in mid-October.

~The Irish and Scottish immigrants that arrived in Canada in the 1800s began the Halloween celebration which continues today with parties, trick-or-treating, and decorations.

~In Belgium both Halloween and All Saints' Day are celebrated.  Belgian people often light a candle in memory of a dead relative.

~The Irish and Americans celebrate Halloween similarly but the Irish do a few additional things for the celebration such as playing a card game in which you can win a prize.  They have a fun tradition called Knock-a-dolly which is like ding dong ditch in America.  Kids knocking on their neighbors' doors and then run away.  They also eat barnbrack which is like a fruitcake with a treat baked inside.

~Halloween is celebrated in Hong Kong and Japan to commercialize their theme parks and residents decorate their homes and shopping centers with spooky decorations.

~Dia de los Muertos, Day of the Dead, is the celebration for Spain, Mexico, and Latin America.  They believe that on October 31st the spirits of their deceased family members visit.  There are decorations and food for when the spirits arrive.  This is a celebration of death, not a day of mourning.

Learn more:
History of Halloween.
The origins of 15 spooky traditions.
Holiday insight.
Live Science.

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Thanks for horsing around with me. You really never know what you will get when you read my blog so thanks for stopping by.