Hallowe'en

The word Hallowe'en dates to about 1745 and is of Christian origin, meaning "hallowed evening" or "holy evening."  It comes from a Scottish term for All Hallows' Eve (the evening before All Hallows' Day), with the word "eve" (from "even"), contracted to e'en or een.    

 
Some researchers speculate that the modern "trick-or-treat" ritual may stem from the Scottish practice of "guising," a secular version of "souling." In the Middle Ages, soulers, children and poor adults, would go to local homes and collect food or money in return for prayers said for the dead on All Souls’ Day.  Guisers discarded the prayers in favor of less religious performances like jokes, songs, or other “tricks.”

Vintage Hallowe'en

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"Tam O'Shanter"
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"Vexed & Hexed"
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"Hallo Halloween"
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"Halloween Medley"
"Witching Hour"
"Black Cat"
"Witch's Rant"
"Restless Ghost"
"Old Spedling Castle's Ghost"
"Hallowe'en Jig"
"Every Witch Way"
"The Witches Score"
auld-lang-syne-postcard

Selected Dances

(click for more haunted folklore and background information)

Black Cat

Black Cat

Black Cat Night

"Take your undergarment off at Halloween, wash it backwards, dry it backwards, and then sit down before the stove backwards without speaking; and if you are to marry, you will see your future husband come down the steps. If you are not to marry, you will see a black cat come down the steps, followed by four men carrying a coffin.”

~ Traditional

Hallowe'en Jig

Hallowe'en Jig

Halloween

Amang the bonie winding banks, <br> Where Doon rins, wimplin, clear; <br> Where Bruce ance ruled the martial ranks, <br> An’ shook his Carrick spear; <br> Some merry, friendly, country-folks <br> Together did convene, <br> To burn their nits, an’ pou their stocks, <br> An’ haud their Halloween" <br><br> ~ Robert Burns, Halloween, 1785

Slains Castle (Dracula's Jig)

Slains Castle (Dracula's Jig)

Dracula Bites Night

"My son, the vampire, <br> He'll make you a wreck. <br>Every time he kisses you, <br> There'll be two holes in your neck." <br>br> ~ Allan Sherman, My Son the Vampire (1964)

Weird Sisters

Weird Sisters

the Season of the Witch

"By the pricking of my thumbs,  Something wicked this way comes. Open, locks, Whoever knocks." ​<br><br>~ Macbeth, Act IV, Scene 1

Ferla Mor

Ferla Mor

Myths and Legends Day

"Whatever you make of it, I do not know, but there is something very queer about the top of Ben MacDhui and I will not go back there again by myself I know.”

~ Professor J. Norman Collie, 1925, at the 27th Annual General Meeting of the Cairngorm Club in Aberdeen

Mischief

Mischief

Mischief Night/Devil's Night

"The devil's in the moon for mischief" <br><br>~ Don Juan by George Gordon, Lord Byron, Canto the First

Sleepy Hollow

Sleepy Hollow

Jack-o'-Lantern Nights

“On mounting a rising ground, which brought the figure of his fellow-traveller in relief against the sky, gigantic in height, and muffled in a cloak, Ichabod was horror-struck on perceiving that he was headless!--but his horror was still more increased on observing that the head, which should have rested on his shoulders, was carried before him on the pommel of his saddle!”

~ Washington Irving, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, 1820

Widdershins (Martlew)

Widdershins (Martlew)

the Season of the Witch

Green Lady of Skipness Castle

Green Lady of Skipness Castle

Ghosts & Ghouls Day

"A form sits by the window,
That is not seen by day,
For as soon as the dawn approaches
It vanishes away."

~ The Haunted Chamber, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882)

Scottish Witch

Scottish Witch

the Season of the Witch

"You've got to pick up every stitch
Oh no, must be the season of the witch"

~ Season of the Witch, Donovan Leitch, 1968

The Pumpking Baker

The Pumpking Baker

Pumpkin Day

"Take a pound of Pompion, and slice it; an handful of Time, a little Rosemary, sweet Marjoram stripped off the stalks, chop them small; then take Cinamon, Nutmeg, Pepper, and a few Cloves, all beaten; also ten Eggs, and beat them all together, with as much Sugar as you shall think sufficient; then fry them like a Froise." <br><br>~ Gentlewoman’s Companion, written by Hannah Woolley, 1675

Witches' Brew

Witches' Brew

Witches' Night Out!

"Fillet of a fenny snake,
In the caldron boil and bake;
Eye of newt, and toe of frog,
Wool of bat, and tongue of dog,
Adder’s fork, and blind-worm’s sting,
Lizard’s leg, and owlet’s wing,—
For a charm of powerful trouble,
Like a hell-broth boil and bubble."

~ Shakespeare's Macbeth, the witches' recipe, Act 4, Scene 1 (c. 1603-1607)

Hallowe'en & Spooky Dance Index

(click for dance description or cribs)

Dance
Type
Couples
Devisor
Source
Notes
A Hallowe'en Spell
-
2C
Frost & Baranyai
A Knaresborough Collection
Coming Soon
Awa' wi' Your Witchcraft
Jig
3C/4C
Mitchell
Whetherly Book 15
Coming Soon
Bewitched in Salem
Strathspey
3C
Boyd
Here We Go Again
Black Cat
Jig
2C/4C
John Drewry
Summer Collection 2
Celtic Ghost
Reel
5C
McKinnell
-
Dancin' Witches
Jig
3C/4C
Werner
Dragonfly
Coming Soon
Every Witch Way
Strathspey
3C
G Dale
Birdsall
Ferla Mor
Reel
3C/4C
Deeside Book Part 1
Eric Ferguson's SCD
Ghost Dance
Strathspey
4C
Anja Girards
Eric Ferguson's SCD Cribs
Ghosts & Goblins
Jig
4C
Lavalee-Tente
Northampton 20th Anniversary [16]
Coming Soon
Hallo Halloween
Jig
-
van Maarseveen
The Dancing Thistles
Hallowe'en
Jig
2C/4C
Bell
Starters
Hallowe'en Jig
Jig
3C/4C
MacLeod
SDA
Halloween
Jig
3C/4C
Mitchell
Whetherly 17
Halloween Medley
Medley
4C
Lindsey
Flying Ghillies 2
Coming Soon
Hoedown for Halloween
Reel
4C
Hankes & McCormick
Milwaukee
Coming Soon
Jeannie O' The Witchin' E'e
Jig
2C/4C
MacNab
Dances #16
Midnight Tryst at Haunted Manor
Strathspey
4C
Tim Wilson
Dunsmuir Dances
Coming Soon
No Ghosts a Roamin'
Jig
4C
McKinnell
-
Old Spedling Castle's Ghost Dance
Jig
4C
Jim Rae
-
Restless Ghost
Reel
3C/4C
Anthony Bulteel
Ribble Valley Book
Samhain Magic
Reel
3C/4C
Barnes
Thistle XXX
Coming Soon
Scottish Witch
Jig
4C
Jane Lataille
Fun for All Seasons
Slains Castle (Dracula's Jig)
Jig
4C
Drewry
Bankhead 2
Sleepy Hollow
Jig
3C
Drewry
-
Spell of the Rising Moon
Strathspey
4C
Miller
DDD 2009
Coming Soon
Tam o' Shanter
Jig
4C
unknown
40 bar jig
Tam o' Shanter
Jig
2C
Keppie
Burns' Night
Tam o' Shanter
Reel
3C/4C
Barnes
Let's All Dance 2
Tam o' Shanter
Reel
3C/4C
Priddey
Tam O'Shanter
Tattie Bogle
Jig
3C/4C
Derek Haynes
Carnforth Collection 1
The Ghost Piper of Kintail
Jig
3C/4C
Boehmer
Cameo Collection Book 8
Coming Soon
The Green Lady of Skipness Castle
Strathspey
3C/4C
Priddey
The Green Lady Book
The Haunt of the Gnomes
Strathspey
4C
Drewry
Canadian Book of SCD
The Haunted Manor
Strathspey
4C
Priddey
Golden Oriole Book of SCD
Coming Soon
The Haunted Stones
Reel
4C
Boehmer
Cameo Collection Vol 20
Coming Soon
The Haunting of Bisham Abbey
Medley
4C
Mitchell
Whetherly Book 1
Coming Soon
The Headless Ghost
Reel
3C
Boehmer
Cameo Collection Vol 20
The Restless Ghost
Reel
3C/4C
Bulteel
The Ribble Valley Book of SCD
The Scottish Werewolf
Jig
3C/4C
Sander
Happy to Meet
The Witch's Stone
Jig
3C/4C
Forbes
Craigevar
The Witches Score
Reel
circle
Maggie and Duncan Keppie
Burns Night in the Annapolis Valley
Vexed & Hexed, Halloween
Reel
3C/4C
McMurtry
Dragonfly
Coming Soon
Widdershins
Jig
3C/4C
Martlew
Berkhamsted Golden
Widdershins
Jig
3C/4C
Ferguson
Highland Collection I
Widdershins
Reel
3C/4C
Treble
New York
Widdershins of Bothwell
Reel
3C
Clarke
Glenfinnan
Witch's Rant
Reel
5C
Roy Clowes
SCD Archives
Witches' Brew
Reel
4S
Gradon
Saint Columban
Witching Hour
Strathspey
3C/4C
Sue McKinnell
Sue McKinnell's Scottish Country Dances

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