Mark (mhaithaca) wrote,
Mark
mhaithaca

Happy New Year!

After my brief reference earlier, emaline412 suggested someone should explain Samhain. I'm probably not the most qualified to do so, but since I brought it up...

Samhain (pronounced "sow-wen," more or less) is the ancient festival that takes its name from the Gaelic "samhuinn," the name for the month of November, originally the first month of the ancient Celtic year. The festival marks the beginning of the winter season and is the ancient Celtic New Year celebration.

The festival came to be a time to honour the dead, especially those who'd passed in the last year, and beliefs evolved that, from sunset to sunset on that day, the veil was thinnest between the worlds of the living and the dead, or that a portal would open, allowing the dead to walk among us.

It's hard to trace the traditions definitively, but it's pretty likely that Samhain is at the core of such diverse observances and holidays as Dia de los Muertos (the Mexican "Day of the Dead" holiday), Halloween, and All Souls' Day.

Comments, clarifications, and corrections welcome. :-)
Subscribe

  • So long to Stevie (201.9)

    A Facebook post from a person I've never met about the passing of a dog I've never met hit me harder than I expected this afternoon.…

  • ✌️

    Still feeling fine about 40 hours after my second Pfizer shot, but I was pretty zonked last night, went to bed early, and slept for about nine…

  • Plexiglass and clipboards! (200.0)

    Interesting observation from bill_schubert that he wishes he'd bought stock in clipboards. "Things we really need in a pandemic:…

  • Post a new comment

    Error

    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic

    Your IP address will be recorded 

  • 5 comments