Halloween Weekend: A history, a weekend question, and quotes!

30 October 2010

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Several ancient peoples believed that the end of October was sacred: credit
These Druids believed that on the night before November 1 (October 31) Samhain called together wicked souls or spirits which had been condemned to live in the bodies of animals during the year which had just transpired. Since they were afraid of these spirits, they chose October 31 as a day to sacrifice to their gods, hoping they would protect them. They really believed that on this day they were surrounded by strange spirits, ghosts, witches, fairies, and elves, who came out to hurt them. In addition to this, they also believed that cats were holy animals, as they considered them to represent people who lived formerly, and as punishment for evil deeds were reincarnated as a cat. All this explains why witches, ghosts, and cats are a part of Halloween today.

The Romans worshiped various gods and on October 31, a special feast was held in honor of Pomona, goddess of the fruit trees. Later, the Druids, an ancient order of Celtic priests in Britain, made this feast an even more extensive celebration by also honoring Samhain, lord of the dead. This was normally done on November 1 and it was therefore decided to conveniently honor both Pomona and Samhain on October 31 and November 1.

The custom of trick-or-treating and the use of "jack-o'-lanterns" comes from Ireland. Hundreds of years ago, Irish farmers went from house to house, begging for food, in the name of their ancient gods, to be used at the village Halloween celebration. They would promise good luck to those who gave them good, and made threats to those who refused to give. They simply told the people, "You treat me, or else I will trick you!" The apparently harmless lightened pumpkin face or "jack-o'-lantern" actually is an old Irish symbol of damned soul. A man named Jack was supposed to be able unable to enter heaven due to his miserliness, and unable to enter hell because he had played practice jokes on the devil. As a result, he was condemned to wander over the earth with his lantern until judgment day (i.e., the end of the world). The Irish were so afraid that they would receive an identical plight, that they began to hollow out pumpkins and place lighted candles inside to scare away evil spirits from their home.

Now, for some Notable Quoteables hosted by Bewitched Bookworms:I'm currently reading my brother's Barnes and Noble Classic: The Count of Monte Cristo:
"He was one of those calculating men who are born with a pen behind their ears and an inkpot in place of a heart"

-page 64

"But sadness is not banished so easily. Like the wounded hero of Virgil* he carried the arrow in his wound" *Aeneas, hero of Virgil's epic: the Aeneid

-page 63

Now, for a Weekend Question hosted by my affiliate, Liz from Cleverly Inked:

Do you judge a book by it's cover? If so which is your favorite?

Like Liz, I hate to admit that I do judge a book by it's cover. Only books though, not people! Covers, in most cases, reflect what a book is about. If it's attractive, I think that the story will be attractive as well. Don't worry, I read the book synopsis too, but the book cover is the deciding factor.


And: Oh my goodness! Halloween is tomorrow! I promised a few bloggers that I'd post my pictures of my costume last week, but my camera man (Dad) was too busy. I'll take pictures tomorrow! ^_^ It's a home-made costume, so it won't look like what I'm supposed to be (a character from the Matrix)

Have fun!


5 thoughts:

  1. I'm actually not dressing up this year, but I'm excited to see your costume! :)

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  2. Oh wow, the history of Halloween is really interesting. I didn't know any of this before. Thanks for sharing.
    I also judge a book by it's cover, although I've been misguided by gorgeous covers and end up with a not so great story.
    I'll be looking forward to seeing your Matrix costume! :D I love your new blog layout.

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  3. I pay a lot of attention to a book cover as well. If it's not particularly eye-catching or anything, chances are lower that I'll decide I want to read the book.

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  4. Thanks so much for participating! Your quotes sound absolutely great!

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  5. oh so ur showing ur costume to the world but not me
    yet.
    we will see tommarow when we go trick or treating
    T-T
    hahaha
    -DIDEM

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Hello! Thanks so much for stopping by: I truly love and enjoy reading your comments!

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