Rus Articles Journal

What did Halloween mean to mysterious Celts and druids?

you already stocked up ognenno - red pumpkin, borrowed at the neigbour - the witch a black peaked hat and the broom, and began to study terrifying stories about ghosts?

And whether you know how you celebrated Halloween before emergence of the American cinema which acquainted us with playfully - a naughty holiday of vampires, demons, black cats and brownies? Or even earlier, to discovery of America?

In far pagan times, towards the end of fall the Celtic shepherds drove the herds from summer pastures and prepared for sad cold winter. The full, solar, joyful time came to an end. A light half of year met dark.

It occurred in sacred days - the days of Hard times which were not belonging to neither a light half of year, nor dark. In this magic time the curtain between the world live and dead rose, hills - monasteries of elves and fairies revealed, the chaos ruled the world.

Only together people could resist to powers of darkness. And Celts gathered during the holiday Samayn - the last feast in anticipation of winter with its poor monotonous meals. The peak of the celebration lasting seven days, from October 29 to November 3 fell on night since October 31 for November 1.

To frighten off the spirits of the dead wandering in night of Samayn, on walls of houses and fortresses hung out human skulls and the embalmed heads. Being afraid of return of the late enemy or execution of its damnations, Celts separated the head - a receptacle of spirit and knowledge - from a body of the killed and stored as a military trophy. The people walking in festive night often carried with themselves the heads which are cut out from turnip. Imitating evil spirits, they knocked at the doors, demanded an entertainment. If the entertainment was not, then owners were waited by rough jokes and draws.

Saying goodbye with dying in the summer, Celts extinguished fire in the centers, lamps, extinguished fires. Light and heat came back to houses with the torch lit from the new, pure fire extracted by priests - druids friction or a cutting. In it there was a hope for repetition of a natural cycle, return of a light half of year.

In Samayn guessed on the future. A thin tape rinded apple - the longer the strip will not be interrupted, the life will be longer. Girls and guys guessed on a wedding: caught apple from water without hands, teeth - who will catch the first, that also marries the first after a holiday.

In the second half of the 1st century BC Julius Caesar for several years of war almost completely destroyed Celts. The Celtic tribes escaped only in Brittany, on the English peninsula Kornuell and in Ireland, but over time and they assimilated with English - saxophones. Nevertheless, the Celtic adverb, legends, traditions remained up to now.

Nobody decorates fences with skulls any more - they were replaced by the bags filled by straw with the persons drawn with coal. “The entertainment or draw“ turned into a children`s entertainment. After at the beginning of the 11th century the Catholic holiday All Saints` Day was postponed since May 13 for November 1, the name “Halloween“ (Halloween) - reduced from “All Hallows’ Eve“, that is “Night on the eve of All Saints` Day“ was assigned to a pagan prazdnikomsamayn.

And when many Irish are modern descendants of Celts - immigrated in the USA, the brightest symbol of a holiday appeared: fun-loving and frightening mugs were convenient to be cut out from pumpkin which crop is reaped in America in October.