Trick or Treat – A History

by Rachel Tighe


Happy Halloween Avonworth!
Trick-or-Treating, also known as “guising” happens in many countries. As you know, it’s when children dress up in costumes and go house to house asking for candy, and in other cultures, money. The “trick” part in Trick-or-Treating is a threat towards the house-owners. If kids don’t get candy from that person, they usually perform tricks on the home-owners or their property.
Trick-or-Treating has been a North American tradition since the early 1950s. Other Halloween traditions are: bobbing for apples, going to parties, carving pumpkins, and decorating your house.
The tradition of going door to door for food already existed in Great Britain and Ireland. Children and poor people would say prayers for the dead and sing. In return, they would get a cake. In Scotland, they made lanterns out of scooped out turnips.
Trick or treating is modeled after a custom, which began because of a belief that during Halloween dead spirits would roam the earth. In order to appease, people would offer treats so that they would be left alone from the spirits.


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