These pagan rights were cooped by the early Catholic clerics in these countries, and they have more recently been restored as part of … Sugar is then added according to taste. According to legend, it is because of Finn Mac Cumhail that Ailleen no longer burns down the hill of Tara each Samhain. Although in Ireland, Halloween used to be a time of abstinence when no meat was eaten so foods that were typically eaten would have been homemade Apple Pies and of course Toffee Apples but first you would have Colcannon, Potato Farls and not forgetting Barmbrack which is a bread that contains fruit, a slice of which has to be left outside before you go to bed so that any passing Faeries or Spirits may feast as well and bestow good luck upon your household. The Celts celebrated what they perceived as the New Year at the end of the summer and harvest season, every first of November, with a festival known as Samhain, which translates to “summer’s end.” It wasn't that long ago that every park was filled with more sunglasses than people and more unnecessarily exposed bellies than an hour-long loop of Chunk from The Goonies doing the 'Truffle Shuffle'. Through time other traditions have blended into Halloween, for example the American harvest time tradition of carving pumpkins. Traditionally, it is celebrated from 31 October to 1 November, as the Celtic day began and ended at sunset. Celtic and Irish Halloween Traditions When is Halloween celebrated in Ireland? Let us know in the comments! This tradition was known as ‘Souling’. Halloween was said to have originated among the ancient Celtic people who referred to it as “Samhain.” To the Celts, Samhain represented the end of the agricultural cycle, the beginning of the winter months, and the day on which souls that had died the previous year traveled to the other side. Samhain in Ireland was an important festival, it marked the end of the bright half of the year and the start of the dark half. 3 - Treacle Scones While the traditional Samhain festivities still took place, they began to merge with these holy days (or All Hallows Days, for holy hallowed saints). It was also a time to honor the dead and gods using pagan rituals. This tradition of wearing costumes also dates back to Celtic times. By Eileen Houlihan. This was thought to bring good fortune during the long dark winters. In the eighth century, Pope Gregory III decided November 1 as a time to honour all saints. They sang songs or offered prayers for the soul of the dead in return for food, usually a soul cake which was a flattened bread that contained fruit. Children will run from door to door, dressed in wonderful colorful costumes from evil witches to nasty little hobgoblins all shouting, “trick or treat” and they will receive sweets, fruit or nuts so ensuring that the house will be safe from any tricks the children wish to play. Each family would let the fire in their hearth burn out, in order to relight it for the winter with a part of the big ceremonial bonfire. The celebration marked the end of Summer and the start of the Winter months. Halloween derives from the early Celtic Church and civilization and the link with the feast of All Saints or All Hallows on Nov. 1. The wearing of costumes, for instance, and roaming from door to door demanding treats can be traced to the Celtic period and the … Being the end of the harvest, Samhain meant it was time to collect food for the winter. The Aos SÍ What’s your favorite part of Samhain? Halloween was influenced heavily by Celtic, Pagan and Christian traditions. RELATED: 10 Places All Halloween-Lovers Have To See. We also acknowledge the darker part of the year with ghost stories and mischief-making. To entertain spirits, ancestors, and neighbors alike, children would travel door to door and sing songs. The hill was named after a powerful druidess called Tlachtga who died giving birth to triplets, she was the daughter of Mug Ruith the druid. Your email address will not be published. While some countries don’t recognize Halloween at all, others celebrate in a variety of different ways. The Celtic Origins of Halloween and Halloween Traditions October 11, 2020 The Irish Jewelry Company As children and adults around the world take part in the spooky festivities of Halloween on the night of October 31st, All Hallows Eve, few know of its ancient Irish Celtic roots in the Samhain (Samain) festival. In its place, Halloween became the main festivity although some of the traditions of Samhain remained. The tradition stems from the Celtic practice of the Samhain festival which was celebrated in the British Isles and has grown into a holiday that is celebrated throughout the world. The evening before All Saints Day was known as All Hallows Eve, which we now call Halloween. The Jack-O-Lantern today is usually carved out of a Pumpkin; this has been passed over from America but in days long ago the Irish would have used a vegetable typically a turnip or swede as these would have been widely available and this tradition was taken to America along with the Irish immigrants. Tlachtga was the location of the Great Fire … This meant that Otherworld spirits & fairies  ( the Aos Sí) were able to cross over the barrier and visit people. Your email address will not be published. The beginning of Samhain was marked by the Great Fire Festival at the hill of Tlachtga (Hill of Ward). One theory holds that many Halloween traditions may have been influenced by ancient Celtic harvest festivals, particularly the Gaelic festival Samhain, which may have had pagan roots; some scholars hold that Samhain may have been Christianized as All Hallow's Day, along with its eve, by the early Church. To find the origin of Halloween, you have to look to the festival of Samhain in Ireland's Celtic past. Halloween has its roots in Samhain, but they are not the same thing. Some of the spookier characters from the Otherworld to visit included the Dullahan (predecessor for our headless horsemen), Pukah the shapeshifter, and Lady Gywn, the headless woman in white. BY: Harry Brent September 30, 2019. shares 300. The flames of old fires had to be extinguished and ceremonially re-lit by druids. Halloween has become a children’s favourite because of the opportunity to dress up, play games with friends and get free sweets and candies. These customs carry on to-day and these foods are still typically eaten although the not eating of meat is no longer observed and Irish Stew is a common dish to feast on before heading out into the cold to watch the fireworks and go trick or treating. His 1785 poem ‘Hallowe’en’ details many of the national customs and legends surrounding the festival which persisted even with the introduction of Christianity. Halloween - Celtic Day of the Dead . Samhain ( pronounced /sow-ween/ in Irish) is the final fire festival of the Celtic year. Robert Burns, Scotland’s greatest bard, wrote extensively of how ancient beliefs had survived well into the Christian era, as he twisted stories of witchcraft and the devil with the traditions kept alive during Hallowe’en. The custom of dressing up in costume comes from an old Celtic tradition when people used to dress in costumes that resembled evil spirits in order to placate them. The various traditions and ceremonies from Samhain came from Celtic beliefs. For a good performance, neighbors gave food and little cakes. Site Designed by. For CRs, it is a time when the dead are especially honoured. Traditionally Halloween was a day that feasts were held and this tradition has not died out. Today Halloween is a holiday devoted to fun and pranks, feasting and dressing up and of course trick or treating. The origins of Halloween can be traced back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain. This Celtic tradition is still observed by some minorities today. The Irish carried their Halloween traditions to America, where today it is one of the major holidays of the year. The custom of dressing up in costume comes from an old Celtic tradition when people used to dress in costumes that resembled evil spirits in order to placate them. Share this article: BY the time you read this, October will more or less be upon us. Why do people wear fancy dress on Halloween? The festival of Samhain (sow-en), celebrated on November 1st, was a gateway to the otherworld, when spirits wandered the earth in search of new bodies to … The All Saints Day soon fused some of the traditions of Samhain. The traditions that we use to celebrate Halloween today began thousands of years ago with this ancient Irish high holiday. So, in the 4th century, Pope Gregory declared May 1st as All Saints Day, followed by All Souls’ Day, as a way to honor the dead. Samhain ( pronounced /sow-ween/ in Irish) is the final fire festival of the Celtic year. The Celts celebrated Halloween as Samhain, 'All Hallowtide' - the 'Feast of the Dead', when the dead revisited the mortal world. Halloween in Ireland has been celebrated for centuries and first originated from the festival of Samhain which dates back over 2,000  years. The convergence of these two high holidays is now what we know as Halloween. ­M­os­t of the traditions of Halloween date back to Samhain (sow-en), the ancient Celtic New Year. 'Help the Halloween Party' and 'Trick or Treat' were the cries to be heard at each door. The one thing that remains consistent across … In order to confuse the fairies on the hunt (The Fairy Host), people would dress up as animals or monsters (‘mumming’ or ‘guising’). Celtic Halloween called Samhain in Gaelic is a traditional Celtic festival marking the end of the harvest season. Serena is a cat lover and writer, in that order. Various recipes exist for this drink but the bases of it are Roasted crushed apples, which are added to milk, hot spiced ale, cider and or wine. If you continue to use this site we will assume that you are happy with it. Between the last day of the harvest and the first day of winter,  Celtic cultures believed the veil between the spirit world and our world was at its thinnest. 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