Halloween is a celebration that is focused on honoring the dead. The celebration started hundreds of years ago where it involved a series of ceremonies and rituals that were performed by different religious groups.
Although, the occasion started off as a religious and spiritual occasion, things have now changed. Halloween has turned into a cultural celebration where people dress up in costumes and tell scary stories.
Although, the Halloween concept has been around for hundreds of years, the practice of getting dressed up in costumes started in 1910s and 1920s. When the idea became popular, it was initially geared towards children; however, adults quickly joined in and also started dressing up in costumes.
Since the inception of the Halloween costumes, people have been dressing up as supernatural characters such as ghosts, skeletons, witches, and skeletons.
Original Halloween costumes
Early Halloween costumes were made to reflect characters from popular cultures during a given period of time. Most of the costumes were homemade. In most cases, they were made from meek materials such as newspapers and wires.
Some of the most popular original costumes are: Little Bo Peep, Disney characters and pets such as cats and dogs. There were also policemen and firefighter costumes that were made to represent important figures in the society.
The first company to trademark Halloween costumes is Disney and has been producing high quality costumes since then.
Latest trends in Halloween costumes
Halloween costumes are a great way for both adults and children to express their personalities and creativity. Over the years many types of costumes have come up.
Costumes for children: the most common costumes for children are those that feature aliens, superheroes, and popular figures in history such as presidents, athletes, movie actors, television personalities, and musicians.
Popular costume ideas for boys are Nintendo characters such as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Super Mario.
Girls often don’t dress in costumes that are scary and threatening. In most cases they go for attires that include fairies, flowers, angels, and princesses.
Costumes for adults: popular costumes for adults are: goblins, clowns, ghosts, and witches which are usually worn by men. Women wear sexy outfits that represent pirates, cheerleader, and wonder woman. Masks are very common with both men and women.
After the Celtics lands were taken by the Romans, Samhain was absorbed with two Roman holidays. Feralia was a day in October to commemorate the passing of the dead. Pomona was a day to celebrate the goddess of fruit and trees. (The symbol of Pomona was an apple, which may explain the adoption of the Halloween tradition of bobbing for apples.)
All Saints and All Souls
In the 7th century, in an attempt to replace substitute Samhain with a Christian holy day, the Catholic Church named November 1 as All Saint’s Day, a day to honor saints and martyrs. The church tried again in the 9th century, making November 2 All Souls Day, a day when the living prayed for the souls of the dead. Neither attempt was very successful. Trick-or-treating is said to have developed from the All Souls Day custom of people going village to village begging for “soul cakes” bread made with currants. The more cakes they received, the more prayers they would offer on behalf of the givers dead relatives who were in purgatory. However, some sources say that this tradition had all but disappeared long before the North American tradition of trick-or-treating began.
By the 1500s, All Saint’s Day had become All Hallows’ Day, and Samhain had begun to be known as All Hallows’ Evening, Hallow Evening, and eventually, Halloween. After the Reformation, Halloween celebrations were combined with Guy Fawkes’ Day (November 5).
Halloween in North America
In the New World, Halloween was not celebrated. In fact, because of the Puritan tradition, all celebrations were considered immoral and even Christmas was scarcely observed before the 1800s.
Halloween was not a popular festival, but it did increase in popularity with the arrival of two million Irish immigrants fleeing the potato famine. Nonetheless, by the end of the Civil War, in 1865, less than 5% of the United States population (mostly the Catholics and Episcopalians) celebrated Halloween and All Saints’ Day. Determined to continue these traditions, the churches started campaigns to popularize the celebration. There is little documentation, however on Halloween prior to the 1900s.
This is a brief history about Halloween and Halloween costumes. When buying the outfits for you or for your children, always ensure that they are of high quality.
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