Most experts believe that the tradition of wearing costumes on Halloween originated in ancient days with the Celtic festival of Samhain, where participants lit fires and wore costumes to scare away ghosts.Know More
Approximately 2,000 years ago, the Celts lived in an area now occupied by Ireland, northern France and the United Kingdom. The Celtic new year was Nov. 1, which marked the end of the harvest season and the beginning of the dark days of winter, signifying death. To them, the night before the new year was a time when the veil between the living and the dead was the thinnest, allowing spirits to cross over. The Celts celebrated Samhain on Oct. 31 to pay homage to these spirits, which they both feared and respected.
Modern Halloween practices are a combination of Celtic, ancient Roman, Catholic and pagan traditions. After the Roman Empire conquered this area, they combined two Roman festivals with Samhain practices. The word "Halloween" has Catholic roots. In the eighth century, Pope Gregory III designated Nov. 1 as a time to honor all saints and martyrs and called it All Saints' Day. The night before Nov. 1 was called All Hallows' Eve, which eventually became known as Halloween.Learn More
The traditions of modern Halloween -- costumes, ghosts, trick-or-treat -- come from a number of ancient civilizations. According to the History website, most experts believe that this spooky holiday stems from the Celtic festival of Samhain.Full Answer >
Halloween face painting ideas include animals, circus clowns and pirates. Scary monsters and zombies painted in a variety of styles are also for great Halloween face painting.Full Answer >
Orange is the most prevalent color in fall, when the holiday occurs, and black is the color of death, which is why these are the most common colors for Halloween. The Celtics may have been the first to use this color combination for Halloween.Full Answer >
In France, Halloween is celebrated by dressing up in costumes, going to parties and trick-or-treating. Pumpkins are carved into jack-o-lanterns, and traditional Halloween decorations are displayed in homes and businesses. Many pastry and candy makers make special seasonal treats.Full Answer >