Do you know the origin of Halloween? If not, read this article to get some interesting and useful information.
Behind the name… Halloween, or the Hallow E’en as they call it in Ireland , means All Hallows Eve, or the night before the ’All Hallows’, also called ’All Hallowmas’, or ’All Saints’, or ’All Souls’ Day, observed on November 1. In old English the word ’Hallow’ meant ’sanctify’. Roman Catholics, Episcopalians and Lutherans used to observe All Hallows Day to honor all Saints in heaven, known or unknown. The Romans observed the holiday of Feralia, intended to give rest and peace to the departed. Participants made sacrifices in honor of the dead, offered up prayers for them, and made oblations to them. In the 7th century, Pope Boniface IV introduced All Saints’ Day to replace the pagan festival of the dead. It was observed on May 13. Later, Gregory III changed the date to November 1.
Despite this connection with the Roman Church, the American version of Halloween Day celebration owes its origin to the ancient (pre-Christian) Druidic fire festival called «Samhain», celebrated by the Celts in Scotland, Wales and Ireland. Samhain is pronounced «sow-in», with «sow» rhyming with cow. In Ireland the festival was known as Samhein, or La Samon, the Feast of the Sun. Contrary to the information published by many organizations, there is no archaeological or literary evidence to indicate that Samhain was a deity. The Celtic Gods of the dead were Gwynn ap Nudd for the British, and Arawn for the Welsh. The Irish did not have a «lord of death» as such. Thus most of the customs connected with the Day are remnants of the ancient religious beliefs and rituals, first of the Druids and then transcended amongst the Roman Christians who conquered them.
History of Witches
The Witches Caldron
«Eye of newt, and toe of frog,
Wool of bat, and tongue of dog»
«Adder’s fork, and blind-worm’s sting,
Lizard’s leg, and owlet’s wing»
«For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and babble»
«Double, double, toil and trouble,
Fire burn, and caldron bubble»
Witches have had a long history with Halloween. Legends tell of witches gathering twice a year when the seasons changed, on April 30 — the eve of May Day and the other was on the eve of October 31 — All Hallow’s Eve. The witches would gather on these nights, arriving on broomsticks, to celebrate a party hosted by the devil.
It was said that to meet a witch you had to put your clothes on wrong side out and you had to walk backwards on Halloween night. Then at midnight you would see a witch.
When the early settlers came to America, they brought along their belief in witches. In America the legends of witches spread and mixed with the beliefs of others, the Native Americans — who also believed in witches, and then later with the black magic beliefs of the African slaves.
History of Trick or treating
Robin laid an egg.»
Trick or Treat!
The custom of ’trick or treat’ probably has several origins. Again mostly Irish. An old Irish peasant practice called for going door to door to collect money, bread cake, cheese, eggs, butter, nuts, apples, etc., in preparation for the festival of St. Columbus Kill. Yet another custom was the begging for soul cakes, or offerings for one’s self — particularly in exchange for promises of prosperity or protection against bad luck. It is with this custom the concept of the fairies came to be incorporated as people used to go door to door begging for treats. Since the fairies were abroad on this night, an offering of food or milk was frequently left for them on the steps of the house, so the house owner could gain the blessings of the «good folk» for the coming year. Many of the households would also leave out a «dumb supper» for the spirits of the departed.
As far as the custom across the Atlantic goes, by the mid- 20th century in Ireland and Britain, the smaller children would dress up and parade to the neighbors’ houses, do little performances, then ask for a reward. American kids seem to remember this with their chants of «Jingle bells, Batman smells, Robin laid an egg,» and other classic tunes done for no reason other than because «it’s traditional.»
As you know, every holiday has its special meals. We’ve found some interesting recipes, which are not difficult to cook. Try and taste!
HALLOWEEN WITCHES BREW
1 can (6 oz.) frozen grape juice
3 cans water
2 tbsp. honey
2 tbsp. lemon juice
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1 cinnamon stick
2 whole cloves
In a sauce pan heat all ingredients over low heat until hot. Mix well. Let stand 5 minutes. Does not have to cool to serve. Remove cinnamon and cloves. Vary by adding 1/2 cup orange juice.
1 cup butter, softened
1 cup icing sugar
1 tsp almond extract
1 tsp vanilla
2 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup whole blanched almonds
1 tube red decorator gel
In bowl beat together butter, sugar, egg, almond extract and vanilla; beat in flour; baking powder and salt. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Working with one-quarter of the dough at a time and keeping remaining dough refrigerated, roll heaping teaspoons full of dough into finger shape for each cookie. Press almond firmly into one end for nail. Squeeze in center to create knuckle shape. Using a paring knife make slashes in several places to form knuckle. Place on lightly greased cookie sheet in 325 degree over for 20-25 minutes or until pale or golden. Let cool for three minutes. Lift up almond; squeeze red decorator gel onto nail bed and press almond back in place so gel oozes out from underneath. Remove from cookie sheet and let cool. Repeat with remaining dough. Makes about 5 doz fingers!
12 large apples
1 8-ounce jar boysenberry jam
4 tablespoons butter
12 gummy worms
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Core apples from the stem end to 1/2 inch from the bottom. Do not push through. Stuff each hole with 1 teaspoon each jam and butter. Place in a pan and bake uncovered for 35 to 45 minutes, depending on the size of the apples. When done, the apple should be tender but not mushy. Remove the apples from the oven. Let cool 15 minutes. Now set each apple in a bowl and spoon syrup from the baking pan around it. In top of each apple, insert a gummy worm with at least half of its body protruding. Makes 12
Collected by Vika Stavropoltseva
So, our friends, we tried to tell you some facts about this amusing festival. Did you like them? Are you ready to celebrate it? We hope you are. Best wishes!
promises of prosperity or protection against bad luck обещает процветание и защиту от невезения
could gain the blessings of the «good folk» мог получить благословение от «хороших людей»