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You've got sugar skulls, a traditional Day of the Dead Mexican treat, co-existing with people dressed up as witches.

And what's making it more unbearable for some is the fact that the Americanized celebration of Halloween that is becoming more and more popular on October 31 may be coming at the expense of the most staunchly English (although equally insubordinate) of holidays: Guy Fawkes Day on November 5.That holiday, also known as Bonfire Night, is a commemoration of the foiled Gunpowder Plot by disgruntled Catholics to blow up Parliament, with the Protestant King James I inside. Sharpe, for one, proudly considers himself a "Halloween Scrooge," and says that, in his opinion, the Americanized way the holiday is being marked in England is "rather brainless. "I hate to say this, but what's happening is a result of U.S. cultural imperialism," Sharpe says, Some might consider the idea of dismissing Halloween as an American intrusion into British culture ironic considering that its roots are found in Scotland and Ireland. Neither the word Halloween or the date 31 October are mentioned in any From the 19th Century to the present day, 31st October has increasingly acquired a reputation as a night on which ghost, witches, and fairies, are especially active.In the year 835 AD the Roman Catholic Church made 1st November a church holiday to honour all the saints.

Halloween is celebrated on October 31st and dates back almost 2,000 years when it marked the ancient Celtic festival of Samhain. Celebrants there have simply taken Guy Fawkes, in name and effigy, out of the holiday. "Who’s to blame? Celebrated like the the Fourth of July, fireworks, parades, blazing bonfires, and effigies of Fawkes (and the Pope), were all typical trademarks of the holiday.But increasingly, revelers in the United Kingdom are combining the holidays and what has long been a distinctly British event has taken on more and more of an American flavor. "Similarly, he suspects Halloween and Guy Fawkes Day may find a way to coexist in Britain. Nuts were put on the fire and, according to their behaviour in the flames, forecast faithfulness in sweethearts and the success or failure of marriages.Another tradition from which Halloween customs might have come from is a ninth century European custom, What similarities are there between the Celts and Halloween? Then again, nobody was walking around dressed up as a banana in 12th-century Scotland. In some parts of Northern Ireland and Canada, they've already managed to dampen the anti-Catholic undertones while keeping the fires burning on November 5. "I have a distinct sense that Halloween is overtaking or has overtaken Guy Fawkes Night," says James Sharpe of the University of York in England, who has studied the history of these holidays.Some data and much anecdotal evidence back this up: In an article last year on Halloween in the U.K., the "It's certainly true that Halloween is now a 'thing' in the U.K., in a way that wasn't true when I was a child," says Dr. Susan Greenberg, senior lecturer in creative writing at London's University of Roehampton, and a dual national who has lived in the U.K. since childhood.Some Brits are not happy to see Guy Fawkes Day being eclipsed by Halloween.

While the celebrations in Britain do owe a good deal to the American version of the holiday, Rogers notes that Halloween here in the U.S. continues to evolve, too, reflecting our own changing society; accommodating the rites and traditions of other seasonal festivals, including the Day of the Dead, a Mexican holiday celebrated from October 31-November 2.

Although it was a joyous holiday it was also the eve of All Souls Day, so in Medieval times it became customary to pray for the dead on this date. During Samhain, people would wear costumes and light bonfires to ward off evil spirits. Besides being offensive, one thing colonial Pope's Day shared with American Halloween and the British Guy Fawkes Day is that all are marked by a degree of bad behavior on the part of some. The American Halloween tradition of trick-or-treating probably dates back to the early All Souls’ Day parades in England. In England, the day of fires became 5th November (In Lancashire, 'Lating' or 'Lighting the witches' was an important Halloween custom. That's just as well. For instance, on Halloween night, a … Lost Halloween traditions dating back to 18th-century Ireland also centered around, you guessed it, matchmaking. People would carry candles from eleven to midnight.


(*Purgatory is a place where souls are temporarily punished for venial sins. In her book, Fraser quotes what she calls the "sensible" words of an American almanac on the subject in 1746: The fires of Halloween burned the strongest in Scotland and Ireland, where Celtic influence was most pronounced, although they lingered on in some of the northern counties of England until the early years of the last century. If the candles burned steadily the carriers were safe for the season, but if the witches blew them out, the omen was bad indeed.In parts of the north of England Halloween was known as Nut-crack Night. After they have been punished enough, they are permitted to move on to heaven.) The actual history of the Gunpowder Plot (or the Powder Treason as it was also known) has also undergone some re-evaluation. It's doubtful that in a country with a large Catholic population, Americans would appropriate Guy Fawkes Day as a holiday of their own, even though in pre-Revolutionary War Boston, it was actually celebrated as "Pope's Day" with effigies of the Pope joining Fawkes as objects of desecration. By Halloween is one of the only holidays where we don t gather around the dinner table for a big family meal. Halloween and Bonfire Night have a common origin they both originated from pagan times, when the evil spirits of darkness had to be driven away with noise and fire. Pope Gregory III named November 1 as All Saints Day in the eighth century, a day to honour 'all saints', which began to include some of the traditions of Samhain.

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