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13. Historical things about Halloween
1. Halloween's origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain
2. On the night of October 31, they celebrated Samhain, when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth.
3. To commemorate the event, Druids built huge sacred bonfires, where the people gathered to burn crops and animals as sacrifices to the Celtic deities.
4. During the celebration, the Celts wore costumes, typically consisting of animal heads and skins, and attempted to tell each other's fortunes.
5. in A.D. 1000, the church would make November 2 All Souls' Day, a day to honor the dead. It was celebrated similarly to Samhain, with big bonfires, parades, and dressing up in costumes as saints, angels, and devils. Together, the three celebrations, the eve of All Saints', All Saints', and All Souls', were called Hallowmas.
6. The festival has its roots in France and the British Isles. In the second half of the nineteenth century, America was flooded with new immigrants. These new immigrants, especially the millions of Irish fleeing Ireland's potato famine of 1846, helped to popularize the celebration of Halloween nationally.
7. Taking from Irish and English traditions, Americans began to dress up in costumes and go house to house asking for food or money, a practice that eventually became today's "trick-or-treat" tradition.
8. By the 1920s and 1930s, Halloween had become a secular, but community-centered holiday, with parades and town-wide parties as the featured entertainment.
9. Between 1920 and 1950, the centuries-old practice of trick-or-treating was also revived. Trick-or-treating was a relatively inexpensive way for an entire community to share the Halloween celebration.
10. A new American tradition was born, and it has continued to grow. Today, Americans spend an estimated $6.9 billion annually on Halloween, making it the country's second largest commercial holiday.
11. In Ireland, where Halloween originated, the day is still celebrated much as it is in the United States. In rural areas, bonfires are lit as they were in the days of the Celts, and all over the country, children get dressed up in costumes and spend the evening "trick-or-treating" in their neighborhoods.
12. Halloween has become increasingly popular in The Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, and Austria since the early 1990s. From early October, stores are full of merchandising related to the popular Halloween themes. Students and little children dress up on Halloween for parties and small parades. Trick-or-treating is uncommon,
13. Other European countries under the American influence start with Halloween parties and decorations too.
*****I started to pay attention to Halloween since 2006 when I started blogging and saw all the decorations on American blogs and heard about the festivities and customs. Now I celebrate Halloween in blogworld at least and a little at home.