6. Halloween Has Strong Ties to Romance
While the holiday of skeletons, witches and ghouls may not seem ripe for romance, many of the historical traditions of Halloween do, in fact, feature romance. Part of Samhain’s legacy on Halloween is the belief in the thinning of the veil between the spirit world and the world of the living. Divination was believed to be more powerful and successful on Halloween as a result. What do young people partaking of festivities want to use divination for? Romance, of course.
Many of the traditional fortune telling activities of Halloween focused on attempting to invoke the face, name, and disposition of one’s future spouse. Many of the divination rituals used abundant fall foods like apples or kale. Apple rituals included eating an apple in front of a mirror while saying some magic words by candlelight. The face of one’s future spouse was said to appear. Kale was pulled from the ground on Halloween, with the shape of the stalk and roots designating the future spouse’s physical appearance, while the flavor indicated his or her disposition.
The Halloween postcards of the Victorian era often portrayed the romantic rituals of the holiday. One famous example shows a young Victorian woman eating an apple in front of a mirror by candlelight, a traditional and widespread ritual of the time. These cards would have often been exchanged between suitors and their intended paramours, as mailed or hand-delivered cards were a common element of courtship.