Spooky Facts for 2019

Kalijah Smith, Contributing Reporter

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Why do we wear costumes? Why do we trick-or-treat? Wait, where do pumpkins fit in? Here’s a
list of uncanny Halloween fun facts that should put an end to all of your creepy curiosities.

Dressing up in costumes are what most everyone looks forward to during the spooky season, it
makes the holiday more alive in a way. And though we tend to dress up as scary beings for the fun of it, it
was also a way to keep away the homecoming of the phantoms who soon returned at this time of year.
Mimicking the souls of the deceased was also suspected to shield oneself from them. The publication of
Prince Sorcie Conteh described it as a final opportunity for the dead to take revenge on their nemesis
before entering into the following world, and to keep hidden, they would wear masks or costumes to
conceal their identities.

Jack-o-lanterns are the top most important feature of Halloween. They’re carved pumpkins, used
practically for anything throughout the holiday, for example: decor, props, and even hosted as ingredients
for recipes. But what many people fail to realize is that jack-o-lanterns were originally carved turnips, not
pumpkins. The tradition comes from an Irish legend about a drunkard named “Stingy Jack”. The myth
tells of how Jack got the better of Satan by continuing to outwit him, trapping Satan with each encounter
and if accepting Jack’s proposal to ignore possessing his soul, Jack would free him. Soon after, Jack died.
Due to his sinful livelihood of deceitfulness and drinking, he was denied passage into Heaven. Satan,
upset by his trickery, kept his word not to claim his soul, also denied his entrance into Hell. He then was
released into the colorless night with only a lit coal, placed into a carved-out turnip, to illuminate his way.

Trick-or-Treat? The time of year when children get to roam their neighborhood freely, going
house-to-house in disguise, normally reciting the phrase “trick-or-treat” in exchange for candy. However,
during the 15th century, the soulers (mainly the children and the poor) would visit homes, chanting verses
of a song in trade for soul-cakes, which either marked a sign of death, or in return a prayer for their souls,
also known as Souling.

Bonfires and food played a great part in the merriment of Halloween. In the period of the
Samhain, they would toss in bones of butchered animals into a joint fire, symbolizing the end of the
harvest season and the return of winter. Food was later prepared for both the living and the dead.

One of the world’s creepiest holiday’ used to be about finding true love. You wouldn’t believe
what tricks to finding romance lies throughout the makings of Halloween has to offer. Bobbing for
apples, a well-known game in America, acted as a fortune-teller: the first to get the apple without using
their hands would be the first to marry. As complexed and admired as the romantic customs were, they
slowly began to be deprived of their dominance on the American public.