Halloween is a holiday observed 1 on the evening of October 31 in most areas of North America and in some areas of Western Europe. The word “Halloween” comes from “All Hallows' Eve.” November 1, “All Hallows' Day” (or “All Saints' Day”), is a Catholic (天主教的) festival observed in honour 2 of all saints. All Souls' Day, observed on November 2 to help purify 3 the spirits of the dead, is also closely linked to Halloween.
北美的大部分和西欧部分地区在 10 月 31 日晚间庆祝万圣节前夜。英文“ Halloween ”一词源于“ All Hallows' Eve ”。 11 月 1 日是万圣节，天主教纪念所有圣徒的节日。 11 月 2 日是万灵节，帮助所有死者净化灵魂的节日，与万圣节前夜的关系也较密切。
Most Halloween customs are based on folk beliefs concerning supernatural (超自然的) forces and spirits of the dead. Halloween decorations (装饰) are typically images of supernatural beings such as witches, werewolves (狼人) , vampires, goblins (小妖怪) , and ghosts. Images thought to symbolize bad omens 4 — such as black cats, bats, owls and spiders — are also commonly used as Halloween decorations. People once believed that ghosts roamed 5 the earth on Halloween. They also thought that all witches met on October 31 to worship 6 the Devil. Today, most people do not believe in ghosts or witches, but these supernatural beings remain symbols of Halloween.
One of the traditions popular on the night of Halloween is trick-or-treat, the main Halloween activity for most children in the United States. Britain imported 7 the custom from America in the early 1980s. On Halloween many children wear ghost costumes 8 and masks or witches' hats and go from door to door to ask their neighbors for candy by saying “Trick or Treat!” The saying implies that if the people in the house give the children a “treat” then the children will not play a trick on them. The neighbors, to avoid having tricks played on them, give the children such treats as candy, fruit, and pennies.
万圣节前夜一个流行的习俗是玩“不请吃就捣蛋”游戏，这是万圣节前夜大多数美国孩子的主要活动。英国于 20 世纪 80 年代初从美国引入了这一习俗。这天晚上，许多孩子穿起鬼魂的服装，戴着面具或巫师的帽子到邻人家挨家挨户要糖吃，嘴里说着：“不给糖，要遭殃!”意思是如果人家不给糖，就会遭到戏弄。邻人们为了避免孩子们玩恶作剧，就会给孩子们一些糖果、水果或零钱把他们打发走。
The most celebrated Halloween decoration is the jack-o'-lanterm (把南瓜挖空并雕成人面开形的杰克灯) , traditionally a pumpkin (南瓜) that has been hollowed out and carved 9 to resemble a grotesque (奇形怪状的) face. Most jack-o'-lanterns contain a candle or some other light, which makes the face visible from far away. People in England and Ireland once carved out beets (甜菜根) , potatoes, and turnips (芜菁) to use as lanterns on Halloween. After this custom reached America pumpkins began to be used.
Dressing in costume is also one of the most popular Halloween customs, especially among children. Traditional costumes usually represent witches, ghosts, and other supernatural beings. However, costumes inspired by contemporary (当代的) popular culture, such as politicians or movie characters, have become increasingly common in recent years. Adults often favor costumes with satirical 10 or humorous overtones (含蓄之意)。