I wanted to do a Halloween special! So, that's fun. I read a lot about Halloween, and I was doing this for no reason what so ever so enjoy!
How about we start from the beginning? Well, if you don't know what Halloween is, it's quite simple. Well, children run around the streets pretending to be monsters and ruining people's lawns. Okay--well, it's more than that. Halloween is celebrated on October 31st. It was originally from a Celtic festival (Samhain), and peoples would celebrate by the bonfires and eat marshmallows? Oh, no my dear you are far from right. Wear costumes and scare off ghosts. Then, Pope Gregory III decided to have this "holiday" to honor Saints. This "holiday" (and the reason I'm calling it that is because I'm unsure it was even one, I could not get much info on this event.) It took place on November 1st, one day after our Halloween now.
Soon, it had many traditions of this Samhain. Now, we are going to go deeper into this Celtic tradition. Samhain means "End of Summer", also meaning the final harvest basically. It is also named "The Feast of the Dead", "Feast of Apples", "Hallows Eve". Now, let's go back to the reasoning of why it was November first. It was the "Two-Sprinited Nights", people called it. Samhain is also known as the Witches New Year. The food at this 'festival', 'holiday' or 'ritual' was of turnips, apples, nuts, gourds, meats, and poultry. Unless you were vegetarian in this great tradition, tofu would make due. Also, guys, I don't know if you know already but I love tofu.
also, I want to make things clear that the reason I said Celtic instead of Gaelic is because I saw lots of sources saying Celtic. But, then I saw a source saying it was a Gaelic festival, which I mark worthy. And it was also said to be a pre-Christian Celtic thing that was from over 2,000 years ago.
Moving on from this festival, let's go back to our Halloween. Let's ask ourselves another question, where did Trick or Treating originate from? Now, hearing squeaky children's voices say "Trick or treat! Smell my feet!" can either be soothing, or just annoying. This goes back to (or originates from) the practices of mumming & guising. Don't forget in this Celtic tradition, they liked dressing up as the dead so keep that in mind as a source. They would earlier be done with straw and little children would go to door and door asking for food. They would even "work" for it by doing acts. Believe it or not, this "Trick or Treating" did not do in America until after World War II. People would go and asks for food during Thanksgiving, thinking about it is sad.
What about jack-o-lanterns, or jack o' lanterns? Well, that originated from an Irish folk-tale. I know when I was little, or even every Halloween now, I always carve those things some scary faces! And it was fun too, going out and getting a perfect pumpkin. I was always told younger to pick the one with the longest stem, good times, it sure was. The Irish folk-tale is called, "Stingy Jack" and it's about a man named that. In this legend, Stingy Jack had a devil come to drink with him. But, Jack here didn't want to pay for his darn drink, so he told the devil to make him a coin to pay for their drinks. Little 'ol Jack here was carrying a cross and put the coin near it, and somehow that makes the devil not able to covert to his true form.
Anyways, so Irish immigrants when to America and spread their folk-tale across America, and that's where it all started really. Not Halloween, of course, but this great pumpkin idea! Oh, wait what? YOU are telling me they weren't made out of pumpkins?! They were made out of turnips and...potatoes?! Well, it's true, they were originally carved from turnips 'n stuff. But, in England, they were carved from beets. People would put these carvings on their windows, porch, doorstep to prevent devils. I've been doing that for years and clearly, it ain't working...ahem, I mean, interesting tale! So, that's how it all came to be. Our great Halloween!