Did you know we have Pomona to thank for Halloween?
The ancient Celts celebrated their new year on Nov. 1, “when the world of the gods was believed to be made visible to mankind,” a Reuters story on Halloween explains. This was known as Samhain.
When the Romans invaded Gaul and Britain in the 1st century A.D., the Romans assimilated Samhain into their day for Pomona, their goddess of fruit. And this in turn was blended into the Catholic Church day of observance for saints, known as All Hollows Eve, then All Hallows Eve, then Halloween.
So Pomona played a part in the creation of Halloween, and also in one tradition of the holiday.
Says Reuters: “Pomona’s symbol is the apple which might explain the origin of bobbing for apples on Halloween.”
What about the origin of eating candy until you’re sick? I don’t know who to scapegoat for that.