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Halloween Origins

What is so special about the 31st October? In the predominantly Christian Western world it has grown to be a widely accepted holiday – for some it is celebrated as Halloween, some celebrate it as the introduction to the Day of All Saints, while some mark the anniversary of the Protestant Reformation. One way or another, this threefold holiday has evidently gained popularity in recent years.

The end of summer – Samhain – was a huge reason to celebrate for the ancient Celts. They associated summer with light and life, and the cold, and dark winter with death. Celts also believed that on this very special night the ghosts of the dead came back to Earth to damage crops and harm people. In order to be perceived as one of them, they would dress up and dance around the bonfire. Some would also offer the ghosts small gifts to earn their approval.

With the arrival of Christianity, a large number of Pagan customs were simply embraced by the church, their essence remaining entirely Pagan. Revamped with new names, they continued to exist under a “new look”. The same happened with Samhain which was changed to Halloween – All Hallows Eve and this is where the modern holiday began.

In the early days of the USA, puritans in New England did not have much understanding for such a holiday. However, the increased influx of emigrants in the late 19th century, especially those from Ireland, lead to the revival of Halloween. Celebrations changed over the years – sometimes they would include dressing up in scary costumes, and at other times parents were urged to take anything bizarre and scary out of it.

Halloween celebrations would sometimes be all about food and spending time with the family, and sometimes they would revolve around praising witchcraft and other occult practices and rites.

halloween scary

Halloween is a widely accepted holiday in modern society. The night between October and November will be celebrated all around the world – masked balls, crazy parties and a lot of pre-Halloween shopping. We hope you are doing something special this year! Wherever you decide to go, Auto Europe can help you sort out your car hire. With over 20,000 locations around the world, you will certainly find something for yourself! Party hard, let your imagination run wild and have a great time!

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