An interesting read for Halloween!
Of course Hallowe’en was invented by the Irish. We are the finest purveyors of myth, magic and skullduggery on the planet, so when it comes to a festival full of trickery and mischief, you can bet we were behind it.
Samhain, as it is referred to as gaeilge (loosely translated as the end of summer), is like a Celtic New Years Eve, celebrating the end of the old year and the beginning of a new one. Traditionally, it was a time to celebrate the harvest and come together for a big hooley (as we say here). All the hard agricultural work was done and now it was time to literally enjoy the fruits of everyone’s hard labour. Large fires were lit as a symbol of light during the coming darkness, and every hearth had to be extinguished on that day and re-lit from the flames of the bonfire.
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