Blog Options

Quick History of Trick or Treat

Quick History of Trick or Treat

Halloween is upon us and for many people with kids this means trick or treat.  Home Depot is full of amazing treats and the trick to saving money in America’s most loved store is to use a Home Depot Money Off Coupon from we are Coupons.  With trick or treating being very popular in the US many people often ask what its origins are and what the history behind the tradition is. The history goes back further than many can imagine.

Ancient Trick or Treat

Samhain, an ancient Celtic Festival that was celebrated on 31st October is believed to the be the source of Halloween.  More than 2,000 years ago the celts celebrated a date that the dead were believed to return to earth. On this night people would light bonfires and offers sacrifices to the dead. This same festival  often saw people dress in costumes believed to ward of phantoms and dark spirits.  Tables of food were left outside dwellings to keep the visiting dead happy. Later people began to dress as ghosts and the like and is perhaps the earliest precursor to what we call trick or treat.

Food for the Soul

Over time and around the 9th century the celebrations of the celts spread and some of the traditions blended with ever changing pagan and soon Christian traditions. November 2nd was made All Saints Day that also celebrated the lives of the dead. It was around about this same time that poor people would visit the homes of richer people and receive food and pastries that were called “Soul Food”. These came with a promise to pay for the souls of dead relatives. This tradition evolved into something resembling the trick or treat of today with children being sent to homes to ask for sweet foods and other gifts.

The Disney Connection

It is not known where the phrase “trick or treat” came from or who first coined it.  However, by the 1950s the ancient Celtic custom had evolved into what we class as Trick or Treat today.  It was depicted initially in the Peanuts comic strip and then in 1952, Disney used the phrase “Trick or Treat” in a now famous Donald Duck cartoon with his nephews Hey, Dewey and Louie.

Trick or Treat Today

Trick of Treat today has become a fixed part of American culture and kids love it. The tradition has become one that brings communities together in the idea of having good fun. We celebrate it with a pinch of salt and most people simply celebrate it and trick or treat just for fun. 

Leave your comment