You must have heard about this holiday. Halloween is celebrated every year on October 31. The festival was primarily originated by Celts, an ancient community where they would go for bonfires and get out in different costumes to avert the ghosts wandering around. In Pope Gregory Ⅲ, around the 8th century, it was decided that the saints would be honored on November 1. Soon after this, several Samhain rituals and traditions were adopted for this day, and hence, the eve before became All Hallows Eve. As time passed, the Halloween festival emerged into a holiday all about putting on costumes, treats, and family get-togethers.
If we find the period when Halloween was first celebrated, it was back to almost 2,000 years ago. The Celtic community celebrated this day as nothing less than a festival. It was spread around a vast area presently known as Ireland, northern parts of France, and the UK. The community celebrated this day as their new year on November 1. For people, October 31 is when the summer comes to an end, and people are also done with the harvest. The day indicates the arrival of winters where the days are going to get colder and darker. It was 43 AD when the Romans were finally able to capture a significant part of the Celtic empire, and while they ruled on it for around 400 years, two Roman festivals were combined with Samhain.
Arrival to America
The celebration of Halloween has strictly confined to the boundaries of colonial New England, and the festival was even more familiar to the people living in Maryland and a few of the southern colonies. The customs started to mesh up with a few American Indians and some European ethnic communities. The festival of Halloween began to evolve quite a lot. The first time Americans celebrated this festival was a ‘play party’ organized publicly to commemorate that year’s harvest. The practices of fortune-telling and storytelling were quite common in this festival. Music and dance were also a thing for this holiday. As of now, you would be surprised to know that almost a quarter of the candies sold in the States was for Halloween. The latest trend among the millennials is that they are also putting on costumes for their pets, and the percentage of such people has gone up to 20%. The festival was confined to just a few parts of the country, and it got its boom in the 19th century when the USA witnessed a vast number of immigrants. These immigrants were primarily from Ireland. The reason behind this was the potato famine. This immigrant flood in the States was the most significant factor in popularizing Halloween across the country.
Few Lesser-Known Rituals
As we said, Halloween has emerged to be one of those festivals celebrated by a majority of the youth population. This generation has forgotten the traditional rituals of the festival, and we were hoping you could get familiar with a few of the important ones. Among several things, the most common one was if a woman ate a sweet dish mixed with nutmeg, hazelnuts, and walnuts, it was believed that she would dream of her to-be husband. Almost all the rituals were focused on providing young women one way or another to find themselves a husband. Fortune tellers also kept telling tricks to young women to find a suitable husband.