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Trick or Treat: Meaning and History of the Phrase

Trick or treat; This is basically a Halloween custom carried on since years and years when children gather together going from houses to houses, knocking on the doors and calling out the phrase “trick or treat” The word ‘treat’ tells the household owners or the people living in the house to give out a treat to the children; treat can be either candies or chocolates and if you don’t give it, then the people are warned that they will face some Mischievous acts or some evil acts by the Spirits roaming around the places.

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What is the history of ‘trick and treat’?

In ancient times, pagans used to celebrate a festival called Samhain in which they believed that the evil spirits and demons along with the witches, came in the night of 31 October to harm and distract the humans from doing their work. Therefore, the people dress as ghosts and disguise themselves as witches and demons to look alike like ghosts and to prevent the evil spirits from harming them. This festival was followed by Christians and it later became known as All Saints Day. This term ‘trick or treat’ actually came out from this ritual when people along with disguising themselves used to dance around asking for treats and holding bonfires in different places including the United States, Britain, and Ireland.

In places like Scotland, children and youth go to houses reciting poems or crack a joke before taking the treats. In short, they performed a little trick, and then in return, they got nuts and peanuts along with candies.

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When did the term ‘trick or treat’ was first used?

This term ‘Trick or treat’ was first used in America and was not even heard before the 1920s. Trick or treat was first used by Today I found out in the year 1927, 4th of November. However, the adults were not so happy by this term because they were forced to give treats to children even though they did not like it, but since they had a fear of ghosts and witches, they had to give treats. A survey was carried in the year 2006, which showed that around half of the population in Britain used to switch off the lights of their houses in order to pretend that they are not in their houses so that they are not forced to give candies to the children.

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How is the term still carried out today?

Halloween has now become America’s second-largest commercial holiday because Americans actually spend more than 2.5 billion dollars on this day just to buy candies. So, by hearing this fact, you can know how much crazy people are for this day. Not only this, but people all over the countries dress up in Halloween costumes holding great Bonfire events, dancing around it, and giving treats to each other. They come out of their houses around 5 to 5:30 p.m and go to their neighbors collecting the treats and end their rounds around 9:00 to 10:00 p.m.

So these were all the facts and interesting things about this term ‘trick and tricky’ and how it actually started being recognized. Hopefully, you guys have increased your knowledge and have cleared all your confusions regarding Halloween and this term ‘trick or treat’.

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