Halloween History: Why Is Halloween Celebrated on October 31?

Elmira | 08 - 29 - 2021
why is Halloween celebrated

Halloween is fun, spooky, and scary!

No matter how old you are, Halloween never gets old. From kids to adults, everyone celebrates Halloween, their activities include wearing spooky costumes, carving pumpkins and eating delicious Halloween treats. Halloween is a famous holiday celebrated every year on October 31. It is considered one of the oldest traditions in the world. But have you ever wondered why Halloween is celebrated on October 31 or November 1st? Learning the real meaning of Halloween will make your celebration more amazing and enjoyable. Let’s dive into the Halloween histories to boost your knowledge.

Why Is Halloween October 31?

What Is the Original Date of Halloween?
  • A. 1 November
  • B. 20 October
  • C. 2 November
  • D. 31 October

Halloween, also called All Hallows’ Eve, has been celebrated on October 31 as it originated about 2,000 years ago, during the ancient Pre-Christian Celtic festival of Samhain. This is how Halloween got its horror and haunted connotations. Is Halloween a pagan holiday? The pagan festival called Samhain was observed on the night of October 31. The Celts who lived in the land now known as Ireland, the United Kingdom, and northern France thought that dead people could return to Earth on Samhain. They celebrated their New year on November 1st. Celts believed that the border between the earth and the dead would be blurred on the night before the new year. They celebrated Samhain on the night of October 31, when the dead returned to the world of the living. The celebration of Samhain included sacrificing cattle, storing stocks for the Winter and putting bones in ‘bone fires.’

The Celts also believed that during the Samhain, Celtic priests could easily perform spiritual communication or predict the future.

Why Do We Celebrate Halloween on October 31?

The tradition of celebrating Halloween originated from the Celtic festival called Samhain. During the eighth century, Pope Gregory III declared November 1 a day to honor all saints. Earlier, Christians celebrated All Saints Day to honor people who had gone to heaven. Eventually, All Saints Day included some of the traditions of Samhain. Earlier, it was called All Hallows Eve. Later it turned into Halloween. Now, Halloween is all about trick or treating, carving jack-o-lanterns, festival gatherings, and wearing costumes and eating treats. 

Where is Halloween celebrated? Ireland, Canada, and the United States are known for celebrating Halloween grandly. The Halloween we celebrate today actually started in the middle of the 19th century when the Irish immigrants moved during the potato famine. They brought their own customs and rituals such as the jack-o’-lantern.

The Real Meaning of Halloween

The term ‘Halloween’ was derived from All Hallow’s Eve meaning ‘hallowed evening.’ Several decades ago, people dressed up as saints and visited door to door, which was incorporated in Halloween, where people began to wear Halloween costumes and go trick-or-treating.

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