Halloween is just around the corner. In the Unites States, Halloween is the second most celebrated holiday after Christmas. The Ancient Gaels, who gave the origin to this holiday, believed that on October 31 the world of the living and the dead overlapped, and the spirits of the dead would come back, sometimes causing chaos and fear. Halloween masks and costumes were traditionally used to mimic the evil spirits and placate them.
Photoshop anything related to Halloween. Some examples are: giving some old paintings a Halloween theme; dressing up politicians, celebrities, or animals for Halloween; turning some movies into Halloween theme movies; photoshopping jack-o'-lantern, etc.
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This contest is fueled by the following news: Halloween is the oldest Celtic festival, which is celebrated on the intervening night of October 31 and November 1. It also refers to “All Saint’s Day”. The term “Halloween” originated from Hallowe’en — shortened from “All Hallow’s Eve”, which in turn is interpreted as “All Hallowed Souls Eve”. Lantern in the form of face, made from pumpkin, is the attribute of the festival. Children dress up in whites as ghosts and frighten the adults using the lantern and the adults buy off the phantoms with gifts (usually sweets).
History of modern Halloween festival was celebrated several hundreds of years back on the soil of modern day Great Britain and North France. This territory was populated by Celts tribals. Celts divided the year into two – winter and summer. During winters, Sun God was in captivity of Samhain, lord of dead and prince of darkness. On November 1, Celts organized Samhain festival. According to ancient faith, Halloween was perceived as the night during which the division between the world of the living and the otherworld was blurred so spirits of the dead and inhabitants from the underworld were able to walk free on the earth. Bonfires were lit on the night and something was offered to evil spirits in sacrifice so as to entreat them. In the beginning of our era, when the Romans occupied Celtic territory, several Roman traditions were also incorporated into the festivals – Feralia, a day celebrated in late October by the Romans for the passing of the dead.
In IX century, when Christianity spread to Great Britain, these ancient traditions got mixed with one more festival – Catholic’s All Saints Day - All Hallows Even. Later on, people began to call it “Hallowe'en” and eventually it became Halloween (Halloween). Today, funny and fascinating traditions remained from ancient pagan festival. On this night, it is accepted to dress up as creatures from underworld and to organize masquerades. Integral symbol of Halloween is pumpkin head. Simultaneously, pumpkin symbolizes end of harvest, evil spirit and fire, frightening the evil spirit. On this night, children knock at doors and shout: "Trick or treat! " - "Treat or else you will regret! “ If you will not offer in sacrifice, these small “mischievous demons” can severely make a joke of you.
Halloween – one of the oldest festivals in world. Its history dates back to thousands of years starting from Celtic festival Samhain, Roman Pomonia Day (in the honor or orchard Goddess Pomona) and Christian’s “All Saints Day”.
Celtic tradition of celebrations in the honor of evil spirits and Christianity’s “All Saints Day” got interweaved in interesting manner in Halloween festival. Legend that the spirits of dead people visit their previous houses and warm near bonfires, form the basis for celebrating the festival. They roam all-round collecting food and drink offerings from remaining members of the family. Spirits of dead people can take various forms of appearance – evil spirits even settled in animals.
Even the other wicked forces such as demons, goblins and witches are also part of spirits. All the evil spirits descend down onto the Earth. Not to fall prey to dead ghosts, people lit candles, bonfires and dress up as scary as possible - in animal skins and heads, hoping to scare away evil spirits. From here, the tradition to cut out ugly faces from potato and turnips and placing lit candles in them made its way and the ugly faces from potatoes and turnips with lit candles became self—styled lanterns. Today, in spite of the fact that many do not even remember the true history of this Day, Halloween has become of the most cheerful, intriguing and enigmatic festivals.
Many countries thoroughly prepare to celebrate the mystic festival “Halloween”. Contemporary Halloween originated from Ancient Celtic New Year, which was celebrated on November 1 according to old calendar. Celts had faith that they can reunite with their dead relatives for some time on this day (Hence the other name of Halloween – Festival of dead).
With the arrival of Christianity in Ireland, even the concept of Celts about world order changed. Faith in Hell appeared and consequently in faith in the existence of evil spirits, which returned to out World on the night of All Saint’s Day to harm the human being. Thus, evil spirits and their accomplices (witches and wizards) became one of the characters of Halloween. Festive awns acquired protective role – their flame should ward off the evil spirits. Other customary method to protect from evil spirits was to disguise oneself in ugly masks, dress-up as creatures of otherworld and paint faces in terrifying colors. It is considered that, whosoever resembles the evil spirits will remain unnoticed by evil spirits – otherworldly forces accept the disguised one as a member of evil spirits.
Scenario of Halloween:
On the eve of Halloween, it is very easy to organize an evening party at low-cost especially in cases, when it is just a costume party. More over, costumes of the guests are main attraction on the holiday and they decorate your house, in themselves being best decorations and artistic designs of the party and at the same time not at all increasing your party budget!
In case, if you happen to be the host in the party for adults, perhaps, it would be better to use the masquerade theme. For this, the guests have to wear masks in addition to their costumes. Such a theme would appreciably add interest to the party since guests are forced to identify the person in mask.