A Victorian Halloween
The Victorian era took place during the 1800s when Queen Victoria ruled the United Kingdom. At this time, women's roles were focused on home and family. They wore very conservative, yet expensive, clothes and jewelry. Men were true gentlemen who exuded classical manners and chivalry. Children were brought up with discipline and refined etiquette. Proper breeding was very important to every family.
In the Victorian era, October 31st was a night of feasting, dancing, playing games, and telling ghost stories to friends and family - not Halloween costumes and "trick or treating". During this era, American men and women regarded Halloween as a peculiar event introduced by their English counterparts. Although Americans were repelled by magic and some horrifying, as well as religious aspects of the tradition, they enjoyed the fun festivities and romance that were brought about by Halloween. Witchcraft, superstitions, spooky stories, and folklore were mostly removed from the American tradition.
In regards to romance, Halloween ignited the act of postcard and love note exchange. Although this had been widely practiced throughout the Victorian era, people became more giving on occasions such as Halloween. Ghost stories told by women did not dwell on eerie and strange tales but rather, on love and romance.
Today, the Victorian Halloween is still being pursued. Here are some ideas and suggestions on how to celebrate Halloween, the Victorian way.
The most important thing in a Victorian Halloween is to exhibit the virtues of the Victorian spirit. For this reason, it's good to know some Victorian manners to create a sense of Victorian realism.