Friday, October 31, 2008
History of Halloween, like any other festival's history is inspired through traditions that have transpired through ages from one generation to another. We follow them mostly as did our dads and grandpas. And as this process goes on, much of their originality get distorted with newer additions and alterations. It happens so gradually that we hardly come to know about these distortions. Trick or treat' may be an innocent fun to relish on the Halloween Day. But just think about a bunch of frightening fantasies and the scary stories featuring ghosts, witches, monsters, evils, elves and animal sacrifices associated with it. They are no more innocent. Are these stories a myth or there is a blend of some reality?
Behind the name... Halloween, or the Hallow E'en as they call it in Ireland , means All Hallows Eve, or the night before the 'All Hallows', also called 'All Hallowmas', or 'All Saints', or 'All Souls' Day, observed on November 1. In old English the word 'Hallow' meant 'sanctify'. Roman Catholics, Episcopalians and Lutherians used to observe All Hallows Day to honor all Saints in heaven, known or unknown. They used to consider it with all solemnity as one of the most significant observances of the Church year. And Catholics, all and sundry, was obliged to attend Mass. The Romans observed the holiday of Feralia, intended to give rest and peace to the departed. Participants made sacrifices in honor of the dead, offered up prayers for them, and made oblations to them. The festival was celebrated on February 21, the end of the Roman year. In the 7th century, Pope Boniface IV introduced All Saints' Day to replace the pagan festival of the dead. It was observed on May 13. Later, Gregory III changed the date to November 1. The Greek Orthodox Church observes it on the first Sunday after Pentecost. Despite this connection with the Roman Church, the American version of Halloween Day celebration owes its origin to the ancient (pre-Christian) Druidic fire festival called "Samhain", celebrated by the Celts in Scotland, Wales and Ireland. Samhain is pronounced "sow-in", with "sow" rhyming with cow. In Ireland the festival was known as Samhein, or La Samon, the Feast of the Sun. In Scotland, the celebration was known as Hallowe'en. In welsh it's Nos Galen-gaeof (that is, the Night of the Winter Calends. According to the Irish English dictionary published by the Irish Texts Society: "Samhain, All Hallowtide, the feast of the dead in Pagan and Christian times, signalizing the close of harvest and the initiation of the winter season, lasting till May, during which troops (esp. the Fiann) were quartered. Faeries were imagined as particularly active at this season. The Celtic Gods of the dead were Gwynn ap Nudd for the British, and Arawn for the Welsh. The Irish did not have a "lord of death" as such. Thus most of the customs connected with the Day are remnants of the ancient religious beliefs and rituals, first of the Druids and then transcended amongst the Roman Christians who conquered them.
SOME HALLOWEEN JOKES
Q. What is a Mummie's favorite type of music? A. Wrap!!!!!
Q. What do you call a witch who lives at the beach? A. A sand-witch.
Q. What happens when a ghost gets lost in the fog? A. He is mist.
Q. Why did the Vampire read the Wall Street Journal? Q. He heard it had great circulation
Click here to know a lot more about the topic. It´s a very interesting web page .
-- The composition based on Student´s books, page 13 titled Describing Yourself was collected.
--Homework: workbook. pages 13 and 14. I´m very interested in your learning the expressions about free time, holidays and the verbs related to this topic.
--Grammar: simple past tense, formation, spelling and uses. Units 11 and 12. We went trough the rules and did a couple of exercises.
--Irregular verbs: Student´s books , page 155 . Pronunciation and meanings of verbs were checked. You have to study up to the verb TO EAT
-- Speaking and writing :a handout about holidays . It was about several people who went on holiday to different places, how they flew, where they stayed, what they did,ate,drank,bought ...
-- Listening: a multiple choice activity in which a young lady was talking to a friend about her 4 day holiday in Rome.
--Homework: Learn the irregular vwerbs , units 11 and 12 in your grammar and if you fancy doing the exercises of the handout number 46, you´re welcome.
--Test: a reading comprehension which had been announced the previous week.
--Homework: Workbook,pages 10 and11 , all the exercises about adverbs.
-Speaking: a review of phrasal verbs. It was an activity we had done a few weeks before and in doing so I wanted to check how many of the phrasal verbs you remembered.
-- Social expressions: The most common ones such as bless you!,cheers!,never mind, help yourself.... ther were some situations and you had to match them with the expressions.
--Listening: To check the matching exercise of social expressions was all right, and then some practice where you were given the beginning of a situation and you had to answer with one of the expressions.
--Speaking: a review on questions of all kinds. A pair work activity to speak as much as possible since the questions were the starting point to carry on speaking.
--Homework: student´s book ,pages 19 and 20.
A Grammar and vocabulary Test, unit 1, for Monday.