Western countries celebrate Halloween, commonly known as All Hallows’ Eve (Feast of All Saints), on October 31. People of all ages dress up for the occasion and go to parties to celebrate. On the other hand, young children get the most out of this celebration by dressing up in pop culture-inspired clothing, making jack-o-lanterns, and partaking in a game called trick or treating.
Halloween Treats: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW
It’s a widespread Halloween practice for children to trick-or-treat on Halloween or Hallowe’en night by wearing costumes and ringing doorbells to demand treats. For generations, people in the United States and other Western countries have performed this practice as part of their religious ceremonies.
TRICK OR TREAT’S HISTORY
Costumes and candy go hand in hand because Halloween is based on Samhain. This Celtic holiday commemorated the conclusion of the summer’s abundant harvest and the coming of the winter’s gloomy, cold months. Celts who lived in Ireland, the UK, and northern France believed that on Samhain, the dead came back to earth thousands of years ago. People came to light bonfires, make sacrifices, and wear animal hide costumes as a way of paying respect to the dead. It also served as a deterrent to intruders. Food was also left outdoors on tables to keep the spirits uplifted.
In the Middle Ages, individuals began dressing up as ghosts, demons, and other supernatural beings to play tricks in exchange for food and drink, which evolved into the current Halloween tradition. Trick-or-predecessor, treating’s known as mumming, originated from this practice.
A similar tradition called guising was practiced by young people in Scotland when they would dress up in costumes and go door-to-door singing and doing tricks in exchange for gifts such as fruits, nuts, and cash.
However, in the early twentieth century, Irish and Scottish groups in the United States have revived the Old World tradition of guise. The Peanuts comic strip depiction of the custom cemented the tradition in popular culture in 1951. An animated film called Trick or Treat in 1952 featured Donald Duck and his three nephews Huey Dewey and Louie. Trick-or-treating has been a popular part of Halloween in recent years. The second-largest commercial holiday in the United States is Halloween.