Like Christmas and National Cheesecake Day, Halloween’s scary history is rooted in a mashup of Christo-Pagan religious events from centuries ago. But, as you get ready to put on that Sexy Martin Van Buren costume, ask yourself this: how much do I really know about the only day of the year when it’s cool to dress sluttily and demand things from your neighbors? For those of you who answered “not the most ever”, Thrillist’s crack Historical Investigations Squad present: A Brief History of Halloween.
On the etymology of Halloween:
According to the expensive, hardcover books in my dad’s basement, the actual name comes from the Scottish phrase for All Hallow’s Eve. Turns out Scots inexplicably call “eve” “even”, and then they don’t pronounce the “v”, and that quickly becomes “e'en”, and pretty soon All Hallow’e'en loses the “All” as well, and there you go. The holiday itself is really a confluence of two different religious customs, one Celtic-Pagan, and the other Christian. To wit: