Jack-o'-lanterns, candy corn and spooky costumes may come to mind when you think about Halloween, but there is far more to know about to know about the holiday. All Hallows' Eve dates back hundreds of centuries.
Forget the tricks and treats — share some interesting facts about the holiday with your friends. Here are 13 things you probably didn't know about Halloween, courtesy of Huffington Post, Fact Retriever and Live Science:
1. No one was ever poisoned from Halloween candy. It’s just a myth.
2. It was once believed that cats protected the powers of witches, which is why they are associated with Halloween.
3. Instead of just saying “trick-or-treat,” you used to have to dance.
4. Halloween is known by various names, including All Hallows’ Eve, Witches Night, Lamswool Snap-Apple Night, Samhain and Summer’s End.
5. Famous magician Harry Houdini, born in 1874, eerily died on Halloween night in 1926. He suffered from appendicitis after he suffered three stomach punches. Creepy, right?
6. Trick-or-treaters would rather get chocolate for Halloween instead of candy.
7. Halloween used to be called “cabbage night” in some Scottish towns. Girls would use the cabbage stumps to determine their future husbands.
8. Samhainophobia is the fear of Halloween.
9. A person will see a witch at the stroke of 12 if he or she wears his or her clothes inside out and backward, legend has it.
10. Costumes are worn because people believed the line between the living and the dead was blurred. They put on masks so the spirits wouldn’t recognize them.
11. Similarly, trick-or-treating might have started because people believed ghosts could disguise themselves as humans and knock on doors to ask for food or money. If they were denied, the spirit could haunt the person who refused the treat.
12. Halloween has been celebrated for more than 6,000 years.
13. The origin of the word “witch” means “wise woman.” It was derived from the Old English word wicce.
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