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Halloween
Samantha Children 6×07

Name

Halloween

Type

Holiday

Date

October 31

Episodes

The Witches Are Out
Trick or Treat
Twitch or Treat
A Safe and Sane Halloween
To Trick or Treat or Not to Trick or Treat
Halloween Show (Tabitha)

Halloween is a mortal holiday typically reviled by witches because of the ugly witch stereotypes that mortals perpetuate about them. ("The Witches Are Out") In the real world, Halloween is a holiday held on October 31 which has its roots in ancient Celtic traditions.

Bewitched[]

Samantha finds herself straddling both witch and mortal worlds on this day. Members of her family hate the holiday, especially Endora, and criticize her for participating in mortal holiday activities. After Tabitha is born however, Samantha begins to participate in the holiday, reading Halloween stories to her daughter and taking her trick-or-treating. ("A Safe and Sane Halloween")

Holiday[]

Overview[]

Halloween is a holiday celebrated each year on October 31. The tradition originated with the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain, when people would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off ghosts. In the eighth century, Pope Gregory III designated November 1 as a time to honor all saints. Soon, All Saints Day incorporated some of the traditions of Samhain. The evening before was known as All Hallows Eve, and later Halloween. Over time, Halloween evolved into a day of activities like trick-or-treating, carving jack-o-lanterns, festive gatherings, donning costumes and eating treats.

Origins[]

Halloween’s origins date back to the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain (pronounced sow-in). The Celts, who lived [two-thousand] years ago, mostly in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom and northern France, celebrated their new year on November 1.

This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death. Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became blurred. On the night of October 31 they celebrated Samhain, when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth.

In addition to causing trouble and damaging crops, Celts thought that the presence of the otherworldly spirits made it easier for the Druids, or Celtic priests, to make predictions about the future. For a people entirely dependent on the volatile natural world, these prophecies were an important source of comfort during the long, dark winter.

To commemorate the event, Druids built huge sacred bonfires, where the people gathered to burn crops and animals as sacrifices to the Celtic deities. During the celebration, the Celts wore costumes, typically consisting of animal heads and skins, and attempted to tell each other’s fortunes.

When the celebration was over, they re-lit their hearth fires, which they had extinguished earlier that evening, from the sacred bonfire to help protect them during the coming winter.

By 43 A.D., the Roman Empire had conquered the majority of Celtic territory. In the course of the [four-hundred] years that they ruled the Celtic lands, two festivals of Roman origin were combined with the traditional Celtic celebration of Samhain.

The first was Feralia, a day in late October when the Romans traditionally commemorated the passing of the dead. The second was a day to honor Pomona, the Roman goddess of fruit and trees. The symbol of Pomona is the apple, and the incorporation of this celebration into Samhain probably explains the tradition of bobbing for apples that is practiced today on Halloween.

Modern Day[]

Halloween has always been a holiday filled with mystery, magic and superstition. It began as a Celtic end-of-summer festival during which people felt especially close to deceased relatives and friends. For these friendly spirits, they set places at the dinner table, left treats on doorsteps and along the side of the road and lit candles to help loved ones find their way back to the spirit world.

Today’s Halloween ghosts are often depicted as more fearsome and malevolent, and our customs and superstitions are scarier too. We avoid crossing paths with black cats, afraid that they might bring us bad luck. This idea has its roots in the Middle Ages, when many people believed that witches avoided detection by turning themselves into black cats.[1]

Halloween Episodes[]

Bewitched[]

Tabitha[]

Reference[]

  1. "Halloween 2020", History.com, A&E Television Networks, January 30, 2020. Retrieved on June 15, 2020.
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