Photo courtesy by Chicago's Ultimate Halloween Guide
From ghouls to goblins, Halloween is known to be a holiday where children can dress up and ask for candy by going door to door. This actually isn’t how the holiday Halloween started. In early European traditions, Halloween was going door to door, dancing and singing to receive “treats,” according to huffingtonpost.com. This popular holiday has deep historical roots and some strange facts that many today would find surprising.
Halloween is actually more Irish than Saint Patrick’s day. Halloween’s origin is from a Celtic-festival called “Samhain”. Celts believed that the undead and ghosts roamed the earth on this day and would dress up. They would leave candy out to propitiate the lurking spirits, stated huffingtonpost.com.
Candy corn is one of the least favorite Halloween candies. Many people don’t like the triangle-shaped candy that usually comes out for Halloween. “Why would anyone want a candy that’s modeled as a vegetable?” asked by anonymous to Huffingtonpost.com. There will be over 35 million pounds of candy corn this year, stated cnn.com. How much of it will even be sold? Or, how much of it will be thrown away?
A full moon on Halloween is really rare, even though it’s one of the top backgrounds for the holiday itself. As told by businessinsider.com, the last time the moon was out on Halloween was 2001, and before that, it was 1955. Scientists predict that the next full moon on Halloween will be in 2020, according to researchmaniacs.com
The first Jack O’Lanterns were not actually pumpkins. The Irish started the first “pumpkin carving.” According to pumpkinnook.com, the first pumpkins were turnips and potatoes, because there were no pumpkins in Ireland.
Wicce is Old English for wise woman, and is also the origin for witches. Witches were very highly respected and according to some beliefs, the witches would hold meetings on this day. Their meetings were called Sabbat. A few sabbats are Samhain, a meeting on Halloween, and Yule, a meeting midwinter/winter solstice.
So this Halloween, whether you are tricking or treating, you can now appreciate the complex and unique history of this popular holiday. But while you are at it, you may wish to think twice about giving out Candy Corn.