THIS weekend Halloween will be celebrated across the world, with trick or treating, pumpkin carving and fancy dress, but few people are aware of how the festival actually began.
Many people think that Halloween is an American invention, but in actual fact its origins are from much closer to home.
Halloween actually originated from the Samhain festival in Ireland and the Irish took it over to America with them, where it is now celebrated throughout the country.
There are elements of the Samhain festival that account for all of our best-known Halloween traditions, which are still carried out every October.
Firstly, fancy dress comes as a result of a mischievous Celtic folklore character named Púca, who was said to appear around this time of year.
The story goes that if Púca appeared at your house and said your name, you'd never be seen again because Púca would make you disappear.
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Therefore, people would dress up in different outfits to avoid being recognised by the creature, so he wouldn't be able to say your name and make you vanish.
Since those days, the Halloween fancy dress concept has changed a fair bit, but it's still one of the traditions most commonly associated with the festival.
Another of those traditions is trick or treat, which also came from Ireland, but has much sadder beginnings than the fun associated with it today.
Instead of children going out looking for sweets, it was originally poor children who would go begging door to door during the festival.
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