In researching Halloween's history, we find a delightful compendium of superstitions associated with either the harvest season in general or with Halloween in particular:
- All souls in Purgatory are released for 48 hours from All Hallows Eve. On these nights they are free (Gaelic).
- Children born on Halloween will enjoy lifelong protection against evil spirits and will be endowed with the gift of second sight (rural America).
- Do not go hunting on Halloween Eve, as you may wound a wandering spirit (England).
- On Halloween Eve, do not look at your shadow in the moonlight, or you shall be next to haunt a graveyard (England).
- If you hear footsteps following you on Halloween, you should not look around, for it is the dead who are following, and if you meet their gaze, you will die (Ireland).
Excerpted from Halloween!, by Silver RavenWolf.