A Conversation for Halloween

UNmodified entry from 2 years ago

Post 1

Huw B

2 years ago - see other entries - I seemed to receive clarification that Samhain is not the 'Celtic' for Halloween; rather it is the Irish Gaelic version of Halloween, a small part of the previously Celtic area of Europe. Despite asking numbers of people since I have yet to have anyone tell me it was nothing but a local Irish term.

I also dislike the attitude of things being 'versions' of Halloween. maybe put differently Halloween is a modern (American) version of Irish Samhain AND other British and European festivals?

It should be stressed that the North American verison of Halloween is not the same as the British version. "Happy Halloween", dresssing up, and knocking on people's doors for treats are very recent introcudtions to the UK. Personally, I remember as a kid in the 1970's in Wales people dressing up and knocking on doors but it didn't seem a 'proper' tradition. General year-round knocking on doors and running away ("Jackie Knockers" or "Jackie door-knockers"" as we called it) seemed a much more normal tradition. There were traditions for gifts from doors at New Years Eve (whenever that is - another long story) which few followed but were REAL traditions. America's Halloween traditions seem a magnified/exaggerated version of European traditions which are now returning to and influencing European behaviour.

It should be remembered that there were other real Calangaeaf (Welsh "Halloween") celebrations that involved such things as lighting fires against the dark. In Britian this pagan practice was subverted/converted into lighting fires a few days later on the 5th of November on Guy Fawkes' Night.

Another example of modern practice being a 'twisted' version of old beliefs.......

Unmodified entry from 2 years ago

Post 2

the autist formerly known as flinch

The knocking on doors thing seems to be 'borrowed' from souling - a tradition in the UK on All Souls Day - nov 2 - when you'd go door to door asking for soul cakes. See my entry A Week of Traditions A641503

Also in the article the bit where it says "to hell with everyone else" - There are two days - one of the beatified, and one for everyone else - All Souls Day. So that's not entirely true.

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