Halloween is without a doubt the spookiest of the holidays and has been celebrated since the 19th Century right up until the present day. Halloween falls on the 31st October and is renowned as the night when all things supernatural are especially active.
The origins of Halloween are somewhat blurry but are often linked to the Roman Catholic Church which in the year 835AD made 1st November a church holiday to honour all the saints. Although essentially a celebration, this holiday fell on the eve of All Souls Day, so in medieval times it became customary to pray for the dead on this date.
The name Halloween is believed to be connected to All Saints Day, another name for which is ‘All Hallows’, hallow being an archaic English word for ‘saint’. All Saints festival began on All Hallows Eve, the last night of October, and so the name Halloween was born.
Another connection with Halloween is that of the Celts who thought the long hours of winter darkness brought with them spirits and supernatural beings. In an attempt to frighten spirits and keep them at bay the Celts used to build bonfires, a tradition still carried out today.