It’s Halloween — time to light your pumpkins and put out the candy for those trick-or-treaters! Have you ever wondered how those customs came about? Well, it seems the tradition of trick-or-treating is similar to the practice of “souling” during the Middle Ages. Common in England and Ireland, poor folk would go door-to-door on Hallowmas or what is now known as All Saints Day begging for food in return for prayers for the dead. As for pumpkin carving, it is believed that it began with the celtic custom of carving turnips into lanterns as a way to remember the souls held in purgatory. As immigrants from Ireland and Scotland came to North America in the mid-1800’s, the pumpkin became a much better substitute for carving because it was softer and larger – so, happy carving and have a frightfully fun night! A special note to all of our American Greetings’ friends and their families who continue to deal with the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, you are in our thoughts this holiday.
View the magical ecard: Fall’s Magic Spell ecard from American Greetings