What did the festival of Samhain celebrate? Samhain marked the Celtic New Year, the end of summer, and the end of the harvest season. It also signaled the beginning of winter, which they associated with death. On this day, the Celts believed the veil between the living and the dead was especially thin.
What are the traditions of Samhain? At Samhain, they were appeased with offerings of food and drink, to ensure the people and their livestock survived the winter. The souls of dead kin were also thought to revisit their homes seeking hospitality, and a place was set at the table for them during a Samhain meal.
How was Samhain originally celebrated? 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.
What is Samhain known as today? With the coming of Christianity, the festival was adopted by Christians as All Hallows’ Eve, All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day – helping to create what we now know as Halloween.