The Origins of Halloween

The Origins of Halloween

Gianna Rodriguez, Staff Writer

When we think of Halloween, we think of the sweet savory taste of  our neighbor’s candy that they gave us…or when we would dress up as something wild and our parents would just go with it. We spent so much time worrying if we did not get enough candy. Halloween is a holiday to not only bring people together, but to be something or somebody  else. But what do we really know about this holiday that so much of us love?

Halloween started with the Ancient Celtic festival of Samhain. History tells us that the reason why Halloween was invented was because  people would  light bonfires and put on costumes to chase away spirits. Even some believe that on Halloween, the souls of the deceased returned back to their homes. tells us , “ On the night of October 31 they celebrated Samhain, when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth.” But who is responsible for bringing this holiday about ? 

Halloween originally started in Ireland and was brought to America in the 1840s. It made its way here because of Ireland’s potato famine which brought in a lot of immigrants from Ireland. Some may ask why we trick or treat on Halloween: In Samhain, people would give out candy at the a festival for honoring the deceased. They would show a sign of respect to the spirits by leaving treats on their doorstep. 

Jack o lanterns also take on a big role in Halloween. When people in Samhain would dress up on Halloween to ward off spirits, they would also use jack o lanterns to do the same thing. But Jack o lanterns weren’t always used for warding off spirits. Some would use turnips or potatoes and in England, most would use large beets. They would usually sit in the windows or close to doors.