Halloween Around The World
Excited to go trick-or-treating this year? Did you know that it’s mainly a Western tradition at Halloween? Here are a few interesting facts about Halloween.
The Start of Halloween
Today’s Halloween customs are mostly influenced by the history of Celtic-speaking countries, and are believed to be linked to the Celtic festival of Samhain, meaning ‘summer’s end’. This is the one night of the year when make-believe ghosts, witches and fairies are most active.
Now commonly made from pumpkins, the scary illuminated faces were traditionally carved out of beetroots and were intended to ward off evil spirits.
In Mexico Halloween is called “El Dia de los Muertos” or Days of the Dead. The event begins on the evening of October 31 and ends on November 2 and seeks to celebrate the lives of loved ones who have passed away.
Most people consider Ireland to be the birthplace of Halloween, and it’s really not so different from the well-known American Halloween festivities.
By far the world’s most popular Halloween celebration, children dress up in costumes and go door to door in their neighbourhoods trick-or-treating, bringing home bags of sweets, while others hold costume parties.
Every year people leave water, bread and lamps on their tables before going to bed. It is believed this will welcome back passed-on souls. Austrian Catholics also celebrate Seleenwoche (All Saints’ Week) between October 30 and
November 2, during which masses are held and families decorate the graves of their loved ones with lanterns and wreaths.