The witches fly
Across the sky,
The owls go, "Who? Who? Who?"
The black cats yowl
And green ghosts howl,
"Scary Halloween to you!"
Nina Willis Walter
Halloween is an observance celebrated on the night of October 31, most notably by children dressing in costumes and going door-to-door collecting sweets or money. It is celebrated in much of the Western world, though most common in the United States, Puerto Rico, Ireland, the United Kingdom, Canada, and with increasing popularity in Australia and New Zealand. The word itself, "Halloween," actually has its origins in the Catholic Church. It comes from a contracted corruption of All Hallows Eve. November 1, "All Hollows Day" (or "All Saints Day"), is a Catholic day of observance in honor of saints. But, in the 5th century BC, in Celtic Ireland, summer officially ended on October 31. The holiday was called Samhain, the Celtic New year.
Irish, Scots and other immigrants brought older versions of the tradition to North America in the 19th century and by the late 20th century, many other Western countries have embraced Halloween as a part of American pop culture.
The occult is a brand for Halloween. In many European cultural traditions it is believed that Halloween is one of the few times of the year when the spiritual world can make contact with the physical world and when magic is strongest. One story says that, on that day, the disembodied spirits of all those who had died throughout the preceding year would come back among the livings in search of bodies to possess for year that comes. It was believed to be their only hope for the afterlife. The Celts believed that, during this time, all laws of space and time were suspended, allowing the spirit world to mix with the living one.
Naturally, the still-living did not want to be possessed. So on the night of October 31, villagers would extinguish the fires in their homes, to make them cold and undesirable. They would then dress up in all manner of ghoulish costumes and noisily paraded around the neighborhood, being as destructive as possible in order to frighten away spirits looking for bodies to possess.
Vampires and Vampire bats are a part of Halloween. The most popular vampire is Count Dracula. Every year, all over the world thousands and thousands of costumes and accessories personifying Dracula, or vampires, or vampire bats are sold around Halloween. In spite of their high prices, costumes of Dracula, including wigs, capes, teeth with fangs and of course the blood are very popular. And that is because Count Dracula has become a symbol of Halloween.
Every year on Halloween, many traveling agencies are offering Halloween tours in Transylvania , the country of Count Dracula. Those tours include visiting Bran Castle a.k.a. Dracula’s Castle, Sighisoara Citadel, fortress of Poienari (Vlad Tepes' Residential Castle ) – rebuilt by Vlad Dracula in 1459 with the hands of traitor boyars. Bran Castle was originally a fortress built by the Knights of the Teutonic Order in the year 1212. Vlad Tepes used Bran Castle as headquarters for his incursions into Transylvania . Over the last years, Dracula became a symbol of Romania , alongside being the symbol of Halloween.
Article by: Dracula.cc Research Team
Last update: 7 September 2006