Halloween is almost here, so what better time than now to learn a bit about the spookiest time of year. We are going to be taking a look at 6 bloodcurdling Halloween facts to horrify you this October. Who knows, maybe one of these facts will help save you from the ghoulies hiding in the night.
1. Samhain and the origins of Halloween
Halloween has been around for more than 2000 years at this point, though not quite as we now know it. It all started with a Celtic Pagan festival known as Samhain (Summer’s End). Samhain was the celebration of the end of harvest, and also when it was thought spirits would cross into the other world. Samhain was practised by those in Ireland, Northern France, and the UK. Though when Christianity took hold in these countries, it was slowly replaced with All Saints’ Day, which is where the majority of Halloween customs came from.
2. Ancient Halloween superstitions
There were many different Halloween related superstitions. Some of the most famous revolved around women and finding their next lover. For example, Scottish girls used to hang wet sheets in front of the fire to see images of a future husband. And In colonial America, the first to successfully bob for an apple would be the first to marry. Romance certainly isn’t something you usually associate with Halloween.
3. Black cats
Tying into superstitions cats have been a part of Halloween since the very beginning, though not in a particularly nice way. During Samhain, it was thought that Druids would throw cats into a fire, normally in wicker cages.
Later on, it was black cats and their association with witches. There was even a time when animal shelters would ban adoptions of black cats around Halloween time for fear of satanic cults using them as sacrifices. This was probably completely unnecessary and ties in perfectly with the “Satanic Panic” of the 1960s and onwards. Nowadays, shelters use Halloween as a way of getting more black cats adopted, as they tend to be the least favoured.
4. Nothing scarier than calories!
It is thought that the average bag of sweets that a child will collect on Halloween night is in the region of 11,000 calories. This is based on US figures, so this number could vary depending on where you live. For reference, you could have over twenty Big Macs from McDonald’s for that sort of calorific intake. Though that certainly isn’t recommended either…
5. The folktale that spawned Jack-o’-lanterns
An Irish folktale about a man named Stingy Jack is thought to have started the pumpkin carving we all know and love today. Stingy Jack was a man who managed to trick the devil over and over again. And when Jack died, he was forced to roam the Earth with nothing but a carved-out turnip and a lump of burning coal to light the way.
This is when people would start carving out a face into things like turnips and potatoes. Later this would turn into pumpkins leading to the iconic orange Jack-o’-lantern we are all familiar with.
6. hide.me VPN have a Halloween sale!
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