When & How is Halloween Celebrated

Mar/22/2022 / by Melanie Fourie
Halloween
Image credits: Drew Hays via Unsplash

Every year on October 31, Halloween is celebrated in the United States, and Halloween 2021 fell on Sunday, October 31.

Why is Halloween Celebrated?

To scare off ghosts, people would burn campfires and dress up at the ancient Celtic holiday of Samhain. Pope Gregory III established November 1 as a day to celebrate all saints in the 8th century. All Saints Day soon adopted some of Samhain’s customs. 

All Hallows Eve, or subsequently Halloween, were names given to the preceding evening. Trick-or-treating, jack-o’-lantern carving, costume parties, and candy-eating have all developed through the years to make Halloween one of the most popular holiday celebrations in the United States.

The History Attached to Halloween

Pope Boniface IV instituted All Saints Day on May 13 in the sixth century CE. On November 1, Pope Gregory III, a Christian equivalent for the ancient feast of Samhain, shifted the event from October 31 to November 1. All Hallows’ Eve, or Halloween, is the name given to the night before the holy holiday.

Since its inception, St. Patrick’s Day has become a widely celebrated event around the globe. Despite the hype in the Deep south, New England colonists were not allowed to celebrate it because of their religious beliefs. By the 1800s, harvest festivities absorbed Halloween aspects, and Irish immigrants fleeing the horrific Great Famine brought with them several Halloween customs that still exist today.

Image credits: Ibolya Toldi via Pexels

Ways People Celebrate Halloween 

Costume Parties

Samhain was a time when people thought that ghosts were roaming the streets, and many of the famous Halloween rituals were designed to exorcise them. Because of this, the Celts disguised themselves by wearing masks and strange clothing in order to fool the spirits into thinking they were other spirits and therefore avoid being terrorized or hurt.

Throughout time, getting dressed up as spooky characters from the Hallowe’en pantheon became a popular tradition during Halloween gatherings attended by throngs of people from all over the world. For the best Halloween 2021 celebrations around the United States, book your flights with Indian Eagle now.

Carving Jack-O’-Lanterns

Is carving pumpkins into silly faces a Halloween ritual you know anything about? According to British mythology, a trickster named Stingy Jack deceived the devil repeatedly into prolonging his longevity and gave him an assurance that his soul wouldn’t be seized after his death. He was rejected by both God and the devil before he died.

With no other means of illumination but a sculpted turnip lantern (gifted to him by the devil), Jack roamed aimlessly through time and space for all of eternity. A Jack-o’-lantern was created by locals to fend off bad spirits, and turnips were ultimately substituted with pumpkins since they are simpler to carve on.

Fruit bobbing 

Autumnal elements like pumpkins and apples are often used in Halloween decorations, as are cornhusks, autumnal foliage, and other similar items.
In celebration of Pomona, the Roman goddess of seedlings and orchards, bobbing for apples is a delightful Halloween tradition that has its roots in Roman celebrations. 

In contrast to common Halloween customs, this practice has no frightening origins and is instead connected with feelings of love and affection. People in the Roman world thought that the very first person to pluck a bobbing apple out of a basin will be the first to be married in the group.

Trick-or-Treating

It is a Halloween practice that includes getting dressed up in Outfits while going door-to-door asking for sweets and chocolates, such as chocolate bars.
People in Celtic countries used to leave food by the entryway of their homes to appease wandering ghosts during the festival of Samhain, in addition to arranging a special feast for the departed. 

When impoverished people visited wealthy households and promised to plead for the souls of their dear ones, they would get sweets called “soul cakes,” which are now said to have evolved into modern trick-or-treating.

 

FAQ

Why is Halloween so scary?

The night before Halloween, known as All Hallows’ Eve, is where the idea of Halloween sprung from. Around All Hallows’ Eve, it was claimed that the veil between this world and the hereafter was particularly thin. This is why today’s Halloween has such a frightening feel.