Around the World
Superstitions have been a part of human life since time immemorial. It is a reflection of the
human fear in some power that is beyond any mortal control or understanding.
Halloween is
traditionally the time when common superstitions, folklore, myths and omens carry more
weight to those who believe. Read about some of the popular Halloween superstitions on
this page. Before you decide that they are nonsense, think again. They have been around for
too long to be written off.

There's so much more to a Halloween superstitions than just trick or treating and Halloween
snacks! Halloween started with a long history of superstitions, goblins and witches, and
folklore and fantasy.

Halloween as we know it today, originated from a
very specific history. Many countries
celebrate some form of Halloween - it's simply not just a holiday that was born in the USA.

One Halloween superstition is that in the olden days (very olden days) a woman looking for a
husband would put a sprig of rosemary and a sixpence under her pillow on Halloween night.
The superstition was that she would dream of her future husband that night!

What about other Halloween superstitions?
You know that old Halloween superstition that says black cats are bad luck? Well, once it
was believed that all cats with a black coat were actually the devil, or eaten up by evil spirits.
In the middle ages, black cats were hunted and burned on Easter.  But, today, lots of families
have black cats as pets and don't give it a second thought.

A burning a candle inside a jack-o-lantern on Halloween keeps evil spirits and demons at

If a candle suddenly goes out by itself on Halloween, as though by breath or wind, it is
believed that a ghost has come to call.

Always burn new candles on Halloween to ensure the best of luck. It is not a good idea to
burn Halloween candles at any other time of the year. It may bring bad luck or strange things
will happen to you, over which you will have no control.

Gazing into a flame of a candle on Halloween night will enable you to peer into the future.

Girls who carry a lamp to a spring of water on this night can see their future husband in the

It is believed that if a person lights a new orange coloured candle at midnight on Halloween
and lets it burn until sunrise, he or she will be the recipient of good luck.

If you hear footsteps trailing close behind you on Halloween night, do not to turn around to
see who it is, for it may be Death himself! To look Death in the eye, according to ancient
folklore, is a sure way to hasten your own demise.

To cast a headless shadow or no shadow at all is still believed by many folks in the United
States and Europe to be an omen of death in the course of the next year.

The old
Celtic custom was to light great bonfires on Halloween, and after these had burned
out to make a circle of the ashes of each fire. Within this circle, and near the circumference,
each member of the various families that had helped to make a fire would place a pebble. If,
on the next day, any stone was displaced, or had been damaged, it was considered to be an
indication that the one to whom the stone belonged would die within twelve months.

According to an old English folk belief, you will invite bad luck into your home if you allow a
fire to burnout on Halloween. To remedy the situation, the fire must be rekindled by a lighted
sod brought from the home of a priest.

If a bat flies around a house three times, it is considered to be a death omen.

A person born on Halloween can both see and talk to spirits.

Knocking on wood keeps bad luck away.

If you see a spider on Halloween, it could be the spirit of a dead loved one who is watching

Put your clothes on inside out and walk backwards on Halloween night to meet a witch.

You should walk around your home three times backwards and counter clockwise before
sunset on Halloween to ward off evil spirits.

In Britain, people believed that the Devil was a nut-gatherer. At Halloween, nuts were used as
magic charms.

Owls hooting used to scare a lot of people. Some people believed that on Halloween, owls
would dive down and eat the souls of anyone dying that night. So, if you heard a hooting owl,
quickly pull your pocket out and leave it hanging. Then you'd be safe from the diving owls.

If you happen to see a spider on Halloween then the spirit of a loved one is watching over you.

Back to Halloween Main
Halloween Activities & Printables
246 pages absolutely jam-packed
with Family Fun Activities &
Teaching Resources. This book
includes lesson plans, crafts,
recipes, Jokes & Riddles,
Crosswords, Wordsearches,
Vocabulary 7 counting  exercises,
Handwriting & memory, numbers,
phonics, colouring, Halloween
Safety, Superstitions, History, Sight
word cards, fingerplays,
scrapbooking pages, tags, bags and
labels, incitations and more.
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154 pgs of Lesson Plans,
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730 crafts, activities and
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