Let’s learn about Halloween!
Halloween had its beginnings in Celtic legends. For the Celts, the year ended on the 31st of October and they believed that on this day, during the night, the spirits of the deceased would come to visit their families. They also believed that at the same time evil spirits could come and to protect themselves from those spirits and from witches, they wore masks and set open-air fires, believing those acted like a talisman.
Nowadays, people put a candle in a carved pumpkin on the evening of the 31st of October. This carved pumpkin is known under the name of Jack-o’-lantern. On the same evening, children disguise as witches or ghost and go to the houses decorated with pumpkins, asking people “Trick or treat?” This means that people have to give candies to children; otherwise those children will play a trick on them. Families organize a Halloween party where they serve pumpkin sweets and where children bring the candies they received. The children who didn’t receive candies can get their revenge by playing tricks.
In Japanese, Jack-o’-lantern is known as “The Ghost Pumpkin” or “The Pumpkin Lantern”. To make a Jack-o’-lantern, you have to gouge out an orange pumpkin, carve out a face out of it, put a candle inside the pumpkin and finally light up the candle (it really looks like a lantern, right?). Jack-o’-lantern is probably the most famous representative of Halloween.
Families celebrating Halloween carve out a frightening and/or funny face out of the pumpkin, and put it in front of their house. On the Halloween night, the Jack-o’-lantern will keep the evil spirits away, protecting the people and their house.