There's so much more to a Halloween superstitions than just trick or treating and Halloween snacks! Halloween started with a long history of superstitions, goblins and witches, and folklore and fantasy.
Halloween as we know it today, originated from a very specific history. Many countries celebrate some form of Halloween - it's simply not just a Hallmark holiday that the States came up with.
One such Halloween superstition is that in the olden days (very olden days) a woman looking for a husband would put a sprig of rosemary and a sixpence under her pillow on Halloween night. The superstition was that she would dream of her future husband that night!
What about other Halloween superstitions? Here are a few that are interesting and fun to read about (13 superstitions to be exact!)
1. Cats You know that old Halloween superstition that says black cats are bad luck? Well, once it was believed that all cats with a black coat were actually the devil, or eaten up by evil spirits.
In the middle ages, black cats were hunted and burned on Easter. (poor little kitties!) But, today, lots of families have black cats as pets and don't give it a second thought. I guess we outgrew that superstition! Good thing too, my little kitty is black and I'd move mountains before I'd let someone come and try and hunt her down!
Here's just the opposite of the black cat halloween superstition: in Britain, they believe white cats are bad luck!
2. Nuts Another old British Halloween superstition is, people at one time believed that Satan was a nut-gatherer, so, on Halloween night, nuts were used as magic charms.
3. Candles An old saying was, if the flame on a candle goes out and it happens to be Halloween, then you have a ghost visiting you! I bet that was a great tactic for keeping kids "scared straight!"
4. Witches This Halloween superstition is about those ugly witches! Here's how it goes: some people claimed that if you put your clothes on inside out and then walked backwards on the night of Halloween, then at midnight, you would see a witch riding through the sky.
Witches have such an interesting and long history, that would take a whole other website to talk about them, but some people believed that witches were the devil. Tests were devised to see if a woman was a witch or not.
Fearful crowds would throw a woman suspected of being a witch by throwing her in a body of water. If she floated, she was definitely a witch (YIKES! I guess nobody knew back then that women NATURALLY float better than men!) If she died, she was not a witch (sheesh! not a great scenario for these poor women!)
5. Bells When you ring a bell on Halloween, all the scary, evil spirits will fly away. Does that include doorbells? Think how many get rung on Halloween night!
6. Owls Owls hooting used to scare a lot of people. Some people believed that on Halloween, owls would dive down and eat the souls of anyone dying that night. So, if you heard a hooting owl, quickly pull your pocket out and leave it hanging. Then you'd be safe from the diving owls. (What imagination!)
7. Celtic custom Here's a really good ol' superstition... On Halloween, a bonfire was built and watched until it went out. Then the ashes were used to make a huge circle where every family in the village would place a stone just inside the circle. the next day, if any stone was moved or damaged, then that meant someone in that family was going to die within the next year.
8. Bats If a bat flies into your house, beware! You may have some ghosts or spirits visiting!
9. More about bats Or, on Halloween night, if you see a bat flitting around early in the evening, then you'll have good weather the next day.
10. And a little more about bats And, last, but spookily not least, if bats fly around your house on Halloween night 3 times, death is inevitable.
11. Warding off evil spirits Want to rid yourself of all evil? Just walk backwards around your house three times before the sun set on halloween and that would banish all evil. (if only it were that simple!)
12. More warding... You can bury animal bones in your front yard (I think that's against the law now!). Or, put a picture of an animal outside near your front door.
13. SPIDERS! If you happen to see a spider on Halloween (what are the chances?) then the spirit of a loved one is watching over you. (this is my favorite superstition...)