As is known, Halloween is a contraction of All Hallows’ Eve, and has its origins in the festival of Samhain, a celebration that the ancient Celts celebrated on November 1 (their New Year).
During the Samhain, it was believed that the souls of the dead returned to Earth and those who had died that year began their journey to the Hereafter. Fires were lit in the hills for winter and to ward off evil spirits, and people disguised themselves to avoid being recognized by the ‘ghosts’.
The Celts not only lived on the islands now known as Great Britain and Ireland, but also in northern Spain, where this tradition was maintained for many years.
In Galicia, Halloween is the festival of Samaín (the Celtic Samhain). In Ribadavia (Ourense), the ‘Noite Meiga’ (Night Witch, in Galician) has been celebrated for many centuries, in which the celebrants are dressed in costumes.