Did you know, Hallowe’en is linked to the Celtic festival of Samhain. It was the first and most important of the four quarter days in the medieval Irish calender, falling on the last day of Autumn. A time for reflection and preparation for the cold winter months ahead. This is when the physical and supernatural worlds are thought to be closest and magical things might happen. To ward off these spirits, the Irish built huge, symbolically regenerative bonfires and invoked the help of the gods through sacrifice! The name is derived from All Hallows Eve. November 1st was All Hallows Day ( All Saints Day).
Carved pumpkins were originally carved turnips! They switched to pumpkins here in North America bcause they were much easier to carve. They were fashioned into lanterns as a way of remembering the souls held in purgatory
Speaking of which….. I cannot believe I did not pick up a pumpkin this year!! I was surrounded by them at the farmers market and now when I realize I don’t have one to carve, there are none to be had. I have called all the grocery stores and the market is closed today:( This will be the first year in our house without a Jack-o-Lantern. I will have to light some candles instead. BOO hoo!
EDITED: I FOUND one! Hooray.