Halloween Archives

GoreMaster’s Top Costume Picks for 2009

GoreMaster’s Top Picks for fun and popular Halloween Costumes 2009.   Click on the photo for more details.  As always we wish you a safe and happy Halloween!!

 Pirate Man Costume

Pirate Man

Men’s Pirate Adult Halloween Costumes includes: headband, vest, shirt, waist sash and pants. one size.

 

Spanish Dancer Costume

Spanish Dancer Costume

Women’s Spanish Dancer Costume Includes dress and headpiece. Shoes not included.

Hairy Speedo Costume

 

Hairy Speedo CostumeOur hilarious Hairy Speedo Costume features a bodysuit with hair, blue speedo and Hawaiian style beach shirt.

 

Pirate Queen Costume

 

Gothic Pirate QueenFull Cut Hooded Dress

 

Sexy Greek Goddess Costume

Sexy Greek Goddess Costume

  • Blue and cream ombre mini dress
  • Headpiece
  • *Shoes Not included*
  •  

    70s Hairy Chest Costume

    70s Hairy Chest Shirt Costume70s Hairy Chest Shirt Costume features a one-piece shirt with built-in hairy chest.

     Twilight Vampiress Costume

    Twilight Bella Vampire CostumeScore your own Edward Cullen in this sexy vampire number. A shiny, strapless mini dress.  The red and black cape is detachable from loops along the neckline and features a stiff collar that stays up. A pleather belt with a Velcro closure in back features a pentagram on front with a large faux stone and several silver stars. A double row of chain hangs on both sides. Fangs complete the outfit. INCLUDES: Dress, Cape, Belt, Choker and Fangs.

     

    Classic Star Trek Costume

    Men's Star Trek Classic ShirtWhether the exciting new Star Trek movie has made you a fan or you’ve been watching Classic Star Trek, Next Generation, Voyager, DS9, or Enterprise for years – you’ll want to beam up to your next costume party in this officially licensed Star Trek costume! Shirt has long sleeves and an embroidered Star Fleet emblem.

     

    Men’s Super Deluxe Zombie

    Mens Complete 3D Zombie-AdultOur super deluxe “Adult Zombie” is sure to scare away the ghouls and goblins. This complete ensemble features a tattered shirt with a pvc chest exposing the bones and other organs, tattered pants with pvc bones exposed, and a pvc mask with hair and Gloves.

    Skeleton Bride Zombie

    Skeleton Bride Zombie4 piece costume includes tattered gown with lace up bodice and tulle trim cuffs headband with attached veil choker with gem and fingerless gloves.

    GoreMaster.com

     

    Halloween III: The Season of the Witch

    Halloween III: The Season of the Witch

     

    Halloween III: Season of the Witch is a 1982 horror film and the third installment in the Halloween series. Directed by Tommy Lee Wallace and starring Tom Atkins, Stacey Nelkin and Dan O’Herlihy. The film is based on an original screenplay by Nigel Kneale and focuses on an evil scheme by the owner of a mask company to kill the children of America on Halloween night through a series of popular Halloween masks – a witch, a jack-o’-lantern, and a skull.

    Season of the Witch is unrelated to the previous films featuring the character Michael Myers, and was intended to begin Halloween as an anthology series, releasing a new Halloween storyline every year. The only connection this movie has with the others in the series is a scene where the trailer for Halloween is on TV. Besides wholly abandoning the Michael Myers plotline, Halloween III departs from the slasher film genre which the original Halloween spawned in 1978. The focus on a psychopathic killer is replaced by a “mad scientist and witchcraft” theme. Moreover, the frequency of graphic violence and gore is less than that of Halloween II (1981), although scenes that depict the deaths of characters remain intense.

    Produced on a budget of $2.5 million, Halloween III grossed $14.4 million at the box office in the United States, making it the poorest performing film in the Halloween series at the time. In addition to relatively weak box office returns, most critics gave the film negative reviews. Where Halloween had broken new ground and was imitated by many genre films following in its wake, this third installment seemed hackneyed to many: one critic twenty years later suggests that if Halloween III was not part of the Halloween series, then it would simply be “a fairly nondescript eighties horror flick, no worse and no better than many others.”

    Trivia:

    • The original writer of the story was Nigel Kneale but he sued the producers to take his name off the movie after seeing how violent it was.
    • A milk factory was used for the setting of the Silver Shamrock factory.
    • After Michael Myers died at the end of Halloween II (1981), the plan by John Carpenter was to make a new “Halloween” movie each year, each telling a different Halloween-related story. After this movie underperformed at the box office, the film-makers decided to bring Michael back to life for future sequels.
    • The tagline “The night nobody comes home” is a play on the original Halloween movie’s tagline, “The night HE came home.”
    • Michael Myers does appear briefly in this film, on a television advertising the original Halloween (1978). It comes near the beginning when Dan Challis is drinking in a bar.
    • When Challis fills in the register at the motel office, he scans the list of names for evidence of Ellie’s father’s stay. All of the other names on the list are the names of the crew.
    • The small town of Santa Mira was also the setting for Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956).
    • The voice of the operator that Challis keeps getting when he tries to call out of Santa Mira is Jamie Lee Curtis.
    • The book that Marge Guttman is reading before her death in the motel room is “The Eagle’s Gift” by Carlos Castaneda.
    • The music playing on the radio when Marge Guttman notices the tag on the floor was also played in John Carpenter’s The Fog (1980).
    • Supposedly, part of the genesis of this film came from a comment made by film critic Rex Reed. Reed panned Halloween II (1981), saying it was so bad that, “If they make a Halloween III, I’ll turn in my press card.”
    • The voice of the announcer in the Silver Shamrock commercials and radio spots is that of the film’s writer/director Tommy Lee Wallace.
    • “Season of the Witch” was the original working title of Martin Scorsese’s Mean Streets (1973). “Season Of The Witch” is also the name of a song by Donovan and an alternative name for the George A. Romero film Hungry Wives (1972). Also the name of an upcoming Nicolas Cage movie: Season of the Witch (2010).
    • A novelization of the film was published in 1982 by science-fiction writer Dennis Etchison under the pseudonym Jack Martin. Despite the film’s commercial failure, the book became a best-seller and was even reissued two years after the film’s release, in 1984.
    • Using the original molds, the skull, witch, and jack-o’-lantern masks seen in the film were mass-produced by Don Post Studios and sold in retail stores to promote the film’s release.
    • ‘John Carpenter’ revealed in an interview with Gilles Boulenger (for the book John Carpenter: The Prince of Darkness) that the original director for Halloween III: Season of the Witch was ‘Joe Dante’.
    • Dick Warlock, the stunt man who played Michael Myers in Halloween II (1981), is credited under ‘assassin’ in the credits.
    • The film’s original director, ‘Joe Dante’, approached Nigel Kneale to write the film while Kneale was temporarily living in Hollywood writing the remake of Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954) for director John Landis that was never made due to budget cost. Dante wanted a new and different story than the two previous films in the series, so he suggested Kneale write a treatment around the word Halloween. The producers liked the idea, and after Joe Dante moved on to another project, producer John Carpenter’s regular collaborator, Tommy Lee Wallace, came in as the new director. Kneale initially blamed the drastic changes to his script on executive producer ‘Dino De Laurentiis’ not understanding his dialogue when it was translated to Italian. Kneale requested his writing screen credit be removed once his comical mystery screenplay was rewritten by an uncredited Carpenter, and then later Wallace (who received sole screen credit as writer), to include more gore and simplify the story.
    • Garn Stephens refused to wear the prosthetic mask during the misfire scene. So a body double was used to complete the scene.

    GoreMaster.com

    halloween 4 poster

    Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers is a 1988 independently-released horror film and the fourth installment in the Halloween series. The film revolves around Michael Myers once more after his absence in Halloween III: Season of the Witch. Directed by Dwight H. Little, the film stars Ellie Cornell as Rachel Carruthers, Donald Pleasence as Dr. Loomis, Danielle Harris as Jamie Lloyd, and George P. Wilbur as Michael Myers. The central plot focuses on Michael Myers 10 years after his 1978 killing spree in Haddonfield, Illinois. It is revealed that he is comatose and barely alive at the Ridgemont Federal Sanitarium, and his sister Laurie Strode has been killed in a car accident. While Michael is being transferred to Smith’s Grove, he escapes and goes to Haddonfield, where he attempts to kill his niece Jamie Lloyd — revealed to be Laurie’s daughter.

    As the title suggests, Halloween 4 marks the return of Michael Myers, the central villain of Halloween and Halloween II, due to his absence in Halloween III. Initially, John Carpenter and co-producer Debra Hill retired the Myers plot outline after the second installment of the series, intending to feature a new Halloween-related film every sequel, of which Halloween III would be the first. However, due to the lack of success of the third film, Halloween 4 re-introduced a Michael Myers related plot.

    Tagline:  Ten Years Ago HE Changed The Face Of Halloween. Tonight HE’S BACK!

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NIdzaUb65Sg]

    Trivia:

    • Series creator John Carpenter wrote a treatment for this film, that was a more ghostly psychological approach to the Michael Myers mythos. It concerned the town of Haddonfield and what effect the events of the first two films have had on the it’s citizens. This concept was later rejected by the producers in favor of the typical slasher fare, at which point in time John Carpernter bailed out of the film, making this the first film in the series to have no participation from him.
    • The girl who drove Rachel and Jamie to the costume store was named Lindsey and is approximately 17 years old. In Halloween (1978), Jamie Lee Curtis babysat a seven year old named Lindsey.
    • After viewing a rough edit it was decided that the movie was too soft, so they brought in special effects wizard John Carl Buechler for one day of extra “blood” filming. The thumb in the forehead and the redneck’s head getting twisted were both done by him.
    • A construction paper cutout of Michael Myers can be seen on a door on the second floor of the school just as Jamie and Dr. Loomis climb the stairs.
    • Melissa Joan Hart auditioned for the role of Jamie.
    • Alan B. McElroy wrote the script in 11 days and beat the writer’s strike by mere hours.
    • Mike Lookinland (Bobby Brady) of “The Brady Bunch” (1969) was the production assistant. His wife, Kelly Lookinland, played the dead waitress.
    • The gaffer, Garlan Wilde, was seriously injured during the filming of the Michael and Brady confrontation. Garlan was putting up a light and fell and cut his wrists; he was quickly rushed to the hospital.
    • Leaves had to be imported and squash was painted to look like pumpkins.
    • Dwight H. Little did extensive research on the history of Halloween and many of its harvest images were put in the creepy opening sequence.
    • The shoot lasted about 41 days and Ellie Cornell and Danielle Harris were required to be on set for 36 of those days.
    • During production of the rooftop chase, Ellie Cornell was injured by a protruding nail as she slid down the roof. After a quick trip to the local hospital she finished the scene with her bandages in place. According to Danielle Harris, “It didn’t even faze her.”
    • The drugstore set was also used in Stephen King’s _”Stand, The” (1994) (mini)_.
    • Originally, when Jamie and Loomis were trapped in the school, Jamie hid in a classroom under a desk. Michael entered searching for her, throwing the desks over. Although they had no time to film this in Halloween 4, the sequence was remembered by Moustapha Akkad and later re-used in Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998).
    • In the schoolhouse, Michael’s mask appears to have blonde hair. This was actually the original Captain Kirk mask used in Halloween (1978) and over time the hair had changed gradually. The filmmakers had the intention of reusing the mask in this sequel but felt it had changed too much and decided to make their own. Several scenes were re-shot with the replacement mask.
    • In the original script, Sheriff Meeker was killed in a battle with Michael in the basement where the furnace was knocked over and caused the house to catch on fire. Originally, the house was supposed to be up in flames during the infamous rooftop sequence. This was eliminated due to budgetary constraints and Sheriff Meeker was kept alive.
    • In Jamie’s introduction, she’s sitting in the living room staring outside at the ambulance. Later, it shows the ambulance has disappeared. In the script, Jamie was staring outside at the rain, and the ambulance appeared after she had turned away. This was changed in editing for unknown reasons.
    • In the original script, Rachel hit Michael with the truck five times. While shooting they reduced it to three and in editing it came out as one.
    • In the original script the film opened with a shot of a long hospital corridor suddenly blowing up and throwing Loomis from the explosion, in a reference to the end of ‘Halloween II (1981)’ in order to show how Loomis survived. It was later decided the film should not have any connections to the predecessors and the explosive opening was never shot.
    • Jamie’s name was Brittany in the original script but was changed in homage to Jamie Lee Curtis.
    • Rebecca Schaeffer auditioned for the role of Rachel.
    • George P. Wilbur wore hockey pads under the jumpsuit to give Michael Myers a much more imposing figure. This is revealed in the documentary “Inside Halloween 5″, where it is revealed that Don Shanks, who played Michael Myers in Halloween 5 (1989), was big enough that this was not required.
    • At the bottom of the stairs where the TV is in Meeker’s home a pair of plastic hands are visible. This is possibly a direct reference to the silver hands seen in mother’s bedroom in Psycho (1960).

    GoreMaster.com

    Famous Pumpkins/Jack-O-Lanterns in Cinema

    We’ve gathered a list of the top five uses of pumpkin/jack-o-lantern in a movie or title.  Here are GoreMaster’s favorites for your Halloween season viewing and enjoyment! 

    5.  It’s the Great Pumpkin,  Charlie Brown (1966)

    It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown is an animated television special, based on the comic strip Peanuts by Charles M. Schulz.

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m-C2L7qR-BE]

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    DVD only $12.99!

    It was the third Peanuts special (and first Halloween special) to be produced and animated by Bill Meléndez. Its initial broadcast took place on October 27, 1966, on the CBS network, preempting My Three Sons; CBS re-aired the special annually through 2000, with ABC picking up the rights beginning in 2001. The program was nominated for an Emmy award. It has been issued on home video several times, including a Remastered Deluxe Edition of the special released by Warner Home Video on September 2, 2008, with the bonus feature It’s Magic, Charlie Brown which was released in 1981.

    To celebrate its 40th anniversary, a retrospective book was published in 2006 entitled, It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown: The Making of a Television Classic with the entire script, never-before-seen photographs, storyboard excerpts, and interviews with the original child actors who provided the voices of the Peanuts gang.

    4.  Pumpkinhead (1988)

    Pumpkinhead is a 1988 supernatural horror film, combining elements of

    DVD only $7.99

    DVD only $7.99

    fable, fairy tale, and morality. It was the directorial debut of noted special-effects artist Stan Winston. The film has become quite popular with horror fans for Winston’s atmospheric direction and memorable monster, and has built up a cult following in the years since its release, and is thought to be a classic of the genre.

     

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PXlcm1el1D0]

    3. The Legend of Sleepy Hallow (1958)

    The story of Ichabod Crane and the Headless Horseman, based on Washington Irving’s The Legend of Sleepy Hollow (narrated by Bing Crosby). The gangly and lanky Ichabod Crane is the new schoolmaster in Sleepy Hollow. His somewhat odd behavior makes him the ridicule of the rambunctious and robust town bully Brom Bones. Despite his odd appearance, Ichabod quickly proves to be a ladies’ man charming all the eligible local ladies. Finally, however, Ichabod discovers the local town beauty, Katrina Van Tassel.  Brom decides to take advantage of Ichabod’s strong belief in superstitions. 

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    DVD only $14.99

    Brom musically tells the tale of the Headless Horseman to frighten the teacher. That Halloween night, Crane’s lonely ride home becomes exceedingly frightening because of his exposure to the possibility of encountering the ghost.

     

     

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jHV_4DKHE0E]

     

    2. The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)

    Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas is a 1993 stop motion

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    DVD only $16.49

     fantasy film directed by Henry Selick and produced/co-written by Tim Burton. It tells the story of Jack Skellington, a being from “Halloween Town” who opens a portal to “Christmas Town”. Danny Elfman wrote the film score and provided the singing voice of Jack, as well as other minor characters. The remaining principal voice cast includes Chris Sarandon, Catherine O’Hara, William Hickey, Ken Page and Glen Shadix.

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8qrB9I3DM80]

    The genesis of The Nightmare Before Christmas started with a poem by Tim Burton as a Disney animator in the early-1980s. With the success of Vincent in 1982, Disney started to consider The Nightmare Before Christmas as either a short subject or 30-minute television special. Over the years, Burton’s thoughts regularly returned to the project, and in 1990, Burton and Disney made a development deal. Production started in July 1991 in San Francisco. Walt Disney Pictures decided to release the film under their Touchstone Pictures banner because they thought Nightmare would be “too dark and scary for kids”. The Nightmare Before Christmas has been viewed with critical and financial success. Disney has reissued the film annually under their Disney Digital 3-D format since 2006.

    1. John Carpenter’s Halloween (1978)

     

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    Halloween

    is a 1978 American independent horror film set in the fictional suburban midwestern town of Haddonfield, Illinois, USA on Halloween. The original draft of the screenplay was titled The Babysitter Murders. John Carpenter directed the film, which stars Donald Pleasence as Dr. Sam Loomis, Jamie Lee Curtis as Laurie Strode, and Nick Castle, Tony Moran and Tommy Lee Wallace sharing the role of Michael Myers (listed in the credits as “The Shape”). The film centers on Myers’ escape from a psychiatric hospital, his murdering of teenagers, and Dr. Loomis’ attempts to track and stop him. Halloween is widely regarded as a classic among horror films, and as one of the most influential horror films of its era. In 2006 it was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”.

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LydgEmQWOp0]

     

    GoreMaster.com

     

     

     

    Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers

    Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers

     

     

    Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers is the 1989 sequel to the popular horror film, Halloween. It was directed by Dominique Othenin-Girard and starred Donald Pleasence, who again portrayed Dr. Sam Loomis and Danielle Harris, who returned to play Jamie Lloyd. The film takes place exactly one year after the events depicted in Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers. The Shape has returned to the sleepy town of Haddonfield, Illinois to murder his niece, Jamie, who is now mute. Dr. Loomis tries to save the day with the help of Sheriff Meeker.

    This is the least successful Halloween film in the franchise. The film was rushed into production too quickly, without even a final draft of the script. The tagline for the film was “Michael Lives. And This Time, They’re Ready!”

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p2HGdxhonGI]

    Trivia:

    • The bus that the Man in Black gets off of stops outside the exact same store where Jamie and Rachel went to get a Halloween costume in Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988).
    • Rachel was originally supposed to be stabbed in the throat with scissors but the actress, Ellie Cornell, felt it was too gruesome an end for her character, so it was changed.
    • Don Shanks revealed in an interview that many of the scenes involving the man in black had him playing the character, because of speculation that he was a blood relative of Michael Myers. He also admitted that even the writers uncertain about the man in black’s identity.
    • The Man In Black shots were re-shot in the UK for unknown reasons with an unknown British extra. The extra was uncredited.
    • The scene where Michael Myers drives a car while wearing a different kind of mask was initially scripted to have him wear a Ronald Reagan mask. However, the idea of a Reagan mask was soon rejected in order to keep the film devoid of any political subtexts.
    • On the audio commentary for the DVD it’s stated that Greg Nicotero and Wendy Kaplan were seeing each other during filming.
    • KNB Effects had designed grotesque facial makeup for Michael Myers’ unmasking towards the end of the film. The producers told them to do so as an option, either showing Michael’s badly scarred face or keep it in the dark. They went for the latter.
    • In the infamous laundry chute scene, Jamie was originally stabbed in the leg but the shot was cut from the film by the MPAA because it was deemed “too disturbing”. Danielle Harris still owns the prosthetic leg.
    • The laundry chute scene was filmed with 30 different sections of the laundry chute. Some were full props, others were positioned horizontally to run the camera through on a dolly, and others were various sections that had cut-out portions for filming. Although the scene was very complex, it was all shot in one night.
    • As part of the opening, an alternate scene was shot but never used. The scene shows a man who finds Michael Myers body at the beginning and removes his mask, staring at it weirdly. The filming of it can be seen in the documentary, “Inside Halloween 5″.
    • For some reason, the directors chose to renovate one of the homes in Utah to recreate the Myers house instead of using the original Myers home, which would be later used in Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995).
    • Director Dominique Othenin-Girard’s name is incorrectly spelled “Dominique Otherin-Girard” in the opening credits.

     

    Amazon Specials!

    Amazon Specials!

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    Terror Train released October 3, 1980

     

     

     

    Movie Poster available here!

    Movie Poster available here!

     

     

    Terror Train is a 1980 Canadian horror film, directed by Roger Spottiswoode and stars Jamie Lee Curtis and Ben Johnson. It was filmed in Montreal, Quebec, Canada from November 21 to December 23, 1979.

    Tagline: The boys and girls of Sigma Phi. Some will live. Some will die.

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4VDLUHfUbNU]

     

     

     

    Buy this Title here

    Buy this Title here

    Halloween

    made Jamie Lee Curtis a young star; starring in three horror films in one year made her a “Scream Queen”, (which was improvised in the movie Scream). Terror Train is probably the least remembered of these films. Released in the United States on October 3, 1980 by 20th Century Fox, the film probably suffered from overexposure of its main star. The Fog and Prom Night had already been released to theaters, and enjoyed some success at the height of the early 1980s horror craze. Terror Train was first released on VHS home video in 1988 by CBS/Fox Video. A DVD was finally released in 2004 and is available with different cover art than the original VHS version. Original VHS copies were fetching up to $30 USD on eBay before the DVD was available.

     

    This was the first motion picture directed by Spottiswoode. He later went on to direct the films Tomorrow Never Dies, Turner & Hooch, and Air America. He is an Emmy Award winning director, who has also won several other directing honors.

    The train was rented from US museum Steamtown Foundation, pulled by one of the manu CPR light Pacific, at the time located in Bellows Falls, Vermont. Many of the cars were damaged during filming by cutting holes to allow filming within the various compartments, and the movie portrayal does not accurately reflect proper operating practices.

    Trivia:

    • The observation type passenger car used in the film called the ‘Denehotso’ is being restored and is now located at the Arizona Railway Musuem in Chandler AZ.
    • The idea for Terror Train (1980) came from a dream that Daniel Grodnikhad. One weekend night after seeing the films Halloween (1978) and Silver Streak (1976), Dan woke up and said to his wife, “What do you think about putting Halloween on a train? His wife answered, “That’s terrible. He jotted down “Terrible Train” on a piece of paper on his nightstand. In the morning he changed the title to TERROR TRAIN, wrote up 22 pages, and made a deal on it with Sandy Howard’s company at 3 in the afternoon.
    • Jamie Lee Curtis shot this film back to back with the similarly themed slasher film Prom Night (1980) in late 1979. Both films were shot in Canada; Prom Night (1980) in Toronto and Terror Train (1980) in Montreal.
    • Shot in four weeks.
    • Filmed aboard actual train cars that were converted to allow space for large camera equipment for the production.
    • The debut film of director Roger Spottiswoode.
    • Along with Halloween (1978) and Prom Night (1980), this film would give actress Jamie Lee Curtis the title of ‘Scream Queen’ because of her frequent appearances in horror films early in her career.
    • The film’s German title is ‘Monster im Nacht-Express’, which translates to ‘Monster on the Night Express Train’.

     GoreMaster.com

    Jack O’Lanterns

    Although you’ve probably never placed the signature O’ in Jack O’ Lantern as tracing back to Irish heritage, this story from History.com tells the story of the origin of the pumpkin-carving tradition…

    Pumpkin carving is a popular part of modern America’s Halloween celebration. Come October, pumpkins can be found everywhere in the country from doorsteps to dinner tables. Despite the widespread carving that goes on in this country every autumn, few Americans really know why or when the jack o’lantern tradition began. Or, for that matter, whether the pumpkin is a fruit or a vegetable. Read on to find out!

    People have been making jack o’lanterns at Halloween for centuries. The practice originated from an Irish myth about a man nicknamed “Stingy Jack.” According to the story, Stingy Jack invited the Devil to have a drink with him. True to his name, Stingy Jack didn’t want to pay for his drink, so he convinced the Devil to turn himself into a coin that Jack could use to buy their drinks. Once the Devil did so, Jack decided to keep the money and put it into his pocket next to a silver cross, which prevented the Devil from changing back into his original form. Jack eventually freed the Devil, under the condition that he would not bother Jack for one year and that, should Jack die, he would not claim his soul. The next year, Jack again tricked the Devil into climbing into a tree to pick a piece of fruit. While he was up in the tree, Jack carved a sign of the cross into the tree’s bark so that the Devil could not come down until the Devil promised Jack not to bother him for ten more years.
    Stingy Jack

    Soon after, Jack died. As the legend goes, God would not allow such an unsavory figure into heaven. The Devil, upset by the trick Jack had played on him and keeping his word not to claim his soul, would not allow Jack into hell. He sent Jack off into the dark night with only a burning coal to light his way. Jack put the coal into a carved-out turnip and has been roaming the Earth with ever since. The Irish began to refer to this ghostly figure as “Jack of the Lantern,” and then, simply “Jack O’Lantern.”

    In Ireland and Scotland, people began to make their own versions of Jack’s lanterns by carving scary faces into turnips or potatoes and placing them into windows or near doors to frighten away Stingy Jack and other wandering evil spirits. In England, large beets are used. Immigrants from these countries brought the jack o’lantern tradition with them when they came to the United States. They soon found that pumpkins, a fruit native to America, make perfect jack o’lanterns.

     

    MORE on the Origins of Halloween HERE!

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    Origins of Halloween

    halloween_wallpaper_house

    Halloween (also spelled Hallowe’en) is a holiday celebrated on October 31. It has roots in the Celtic festival of Samhain and the Christian holy day of All Saints’ Day. It is largely a secular celebration, but some Christians and pagans have expressed strong feelings about its religious overtones.  Irish immigrants carried versions of the tradition to North America during Ireland’s Great Famine of 1846. The day is often associated with the colors orange and black, and is strongly associated with symbols such as the jack-o’-lantern. Halloween activities include trick-or-treating, wearing costumes, ghost tours, bonfires, costume parties, visiting haunted attractions, carving jack-o’-lanterns, pranking people, reading scary stories, and watching horror movies.

    Halloween has origins in the ancient Celtic festival known as Samhain [pronounced: sow- wen] (Irish pronunciation: [ˈsˠaunʲ]; from the Old Irish samhain, possibly derived from Gaulish samonios).  The festival of Samhain is a celebration of the end of the harvest season in Gaelic culture, and is sometimes  regarded as the “Celtic New Year”.  Traditionally, the festival was a time used by the ancient Celtic pagans to take stock of supplies and slaughter livestock for winter stores. The ancient Celts believed that on October 31st, now known as Halloween, the boundary between the living and the deceased dissolved, and the dead become dangerous for the living by causing problems such as sickness or damaged crops. The festivals would frequently involve bonfires, into which the bones of slaughtered livestock were thrown. Costumes and masks being worn at Halloween goes back to the Celtic traditions of attempting to copy the evil spirits or placate them, in Scotland for instance where the dead were impersonated by young men with masked, veiled or blackened faces, dressed in white.

    vintage-halloween-pumpkin-woman-black-cat

    The term Halloween, originally spelled Hallowe’en, is shortened from All Hallows’ Even (“All Hallows’ Eve”) [eve is an abbreviation of even, an older word for evening. Halloween gets -een as a result of syncopation of even to e’en], from the Old English term eallra hālgena ǣfen meaning “All Hallow’ Evening”, as it is the eve of “All Hallows’ Day”, which is now also known as All Saints’ Day. It was a day of religious festivities in various northern European pagan traditions, until Popes Gregory III and Gregory IV moved the old Christian feast of All Saints’ Day from May 13 (which had itself been the date of a pagan holiday, the Feast of the Lemures) to November 1. In the 9th century, the Church measured the day as starting at sunset, in accordance with the Florentine calendar. Although All Saints’ Day is now considered to occur one day after Halloween, the two holidays were, at that time, celebrated on the same day.

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