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halloweenbookcover.jpg - 10458 BytesTHE HALLOWEEN ENCYCLOPEDIA (McFarland, 2003). The concept of Halloween as a holiday and cultural phenomenon worthy of serious study is only a few decades old, and only since the mid–1980s have scholars started to accept that Halloween’s place in modern society (especially in American society) goes beyond horror fiction and children's books. The first book devoted solely to Halloween was published just over a century ago, and now Halloween has its own encyclopedia.

Major entries include Samhain, the Celtic ancestor of Halloween; witches, a major Christian addition to the mythology of Halloween and one that still generates interest and controversy; skeletons, a universally recognized symbol of death; the Day of the Dead, the Mexican holiday that is often compared to Halloween; the jack-o’-lantern, which has its roots in folktales starring the rascally Jack who always manages somehow to beat the Devil; and trick-or-treating, the most loved and misunderstood American Halloween ritual. Hundreds of small entries cover Halloween history and mythology, fortune-telling lore, harvest legends, and 20th century additions to the holiday’s rituals.

  • The first encyclopedic reference book on Halloween
  • Almost 400 entries
  • 80 illustrations
  • Two appendices: "Chronology of Halloween" and "Halloween in Literature and the Arts"
  • Detailed index
  • Comprehensive bibliography
  • Fifteen entries of over 1,000 words: All Saints' Day; All Souls' Day; Bonfires; Candles; Cats; Celebrations; Days of the Dead; Fairies; Guy Fawkes Day/Night; Halloween Origins and Development; Jack O'Lantern; Pranking; Samhain; Trick or Treat; Water; and Witches
  • Illustrated hardcover binding, printed on alkaline paper

Excerpts! Click to read the book's entries on BANSHEE, NUTS, or URBAN LEGENDS.

Order your signed copy of The Halloween Encyclopedia from Dark Delicacies!