The first of November between paganism and religion

Rome is famous all over the world as the Eternal City, an epithet the Italian capital deserved along the centuries thanks to its legendary history featuring its appearance and structure of streets and squares. More than a very fascinating city, Rome is also a tourist destination for any situation and able to satisfy every visitor’s desire, spread around the city all over the year.

Welcoming and chaotic during the summer, colourful and rich in mysteries to be discovered in the spring, romantic and unforgettable during the cold and suggestive winter months, Rome gets lively as one of a kind during the fall.


First of November in Rome

One of the most famous features of Rome is the strong religion and the importance the capital takes in the Christianism history. In Rome there is the Vatican City, Pope’s seat and the always favourite destination of pilgrims and believers from all over the world and this is one more reason why the Eternal City is one of the most suggestive destinations to be visited in a very peculiar period as the First of November is.


Rome and the All Saints long holiday

 The first of November is one of the most mysterious days in the Christian calendar. Especially in Italy, this occasion represents an opportunity to have a break from work and everyday life worries too.

However, the chronological proximity of the Christian celebration and the Anglo-Saxon Halloween tradition created a mix of fascination and interest, especially in lively and active cities as Rome is.

It’s a paradox, but the All Saints celebration is one of the few celebrations still resisting to the Anglo-Saxon tradition, saving its religious purpose.

However, as many other Christian celebrations, it takes origins from a pagan ritual, famous in the ancient Rome. Roman people used to honour Pomona celebrating the end of the most productive rural period by propitiatory rites, giving thanks to the Gods for the gifts they offered them by the time.

The tradition got modified along the centuries, becoming the All Saints celebration, thanks to the strong diffusion of Christianism.


Halloween and All Saints celebrations: a tour around the unknown Rome

One of the typical features of the first of November celebration is the mix of the Celtic and Roman tradition, after the Gaul conquest by Julius Caesar, defining the date of celebrations in a very precise moment: the night between the 31st October and the 1st November. It is the famous night of winter calends, the closest contact between living and dead people worlds for the ancient people.

The pagan footprint on this celebration is very strong, but it had a strong stop when Boniface IV became pope: he moved all the pagan rites in the All Saints festivity.


Rome between witches and Christian religion

All of those things, in the Eternal City, become a fascinating mix of tradition, history and culture.

The ancient fascination of paganism set by now comes out by the events, more and more supported by young and older people, enriching the Halloween night.

Concerts, theme parties, cooking experiences from Great Britain tradition and costumes shows are so famous even in Italy nowadays; during the All Saints celebrations, Rome decks out itself in a very original way, but on the first of November all the masks and the witches brooms go back in their stores and the city shows the best ceremony outfits to celebrate the All Saints glory. On this very important Christian day, lots of believers go to Rome to take part to the liturgical celebrations in all the churches, big and small ones.

But the peculiarity of these festivity days is not finished yet: also the 2nd November is rich in preparation to commemorate the defuncts.

The chronological proximity of the two events shows an evident connection to the pagan tradition.

As well as Roman people lived this period as the closest and most intimate moment between the living and dead people worlds, so Christian people do nowadays, to have a break from the everyday life to celebrate the eternal relation between life and death.


Where to stay in Rome 

The city centre is obviously the most famous area of Rome, even during the All Saints holidays, famous all over the world for its beauties and artistic, archaeological and cultural interesting sites.

The majority of the events concerning the celebrations of the so called “Death long holidays” takes place in the area near the Death long holidaysColosseum and via del Corso, but it is not finished yet! During this year, the city will host some interesting exhibitions of artists with the likes of Picasso, Monet and Caravaggio, starting some months before November.

To not miss any occasion of celebrating the All Saints between paganism and religion, we suggest you to stay in the area near Trastevere, Monti and Campo de’ Fiori districts.


What to do in Rome on Halloween and All Saints Day

If you decide to spend the first of November in Rome you can take advantage of spending the Halloween night in the capital clubs.

The witches’ night is very exciting along the streets and the roman districts. You can get informed about some events and book them right now, such as open bar or disco nights dedicated to this Celtic celebration, introducing the day after festivity among the artistic and architectural wonders in the city.

Between the paganism of the most scaring festivity of the year and the religion of one of the dearest Christian appointments, Rome can be a pleasant surprise, giving you the opportunity to relax and take the distance from your everyday worries.

The First of November around the capital: a plunge in a unique atmosphere, between fantastic and surreal.

Do you want to stay in Rome?

For this location we recommend Hotel Ariston, the ideal starting point to discover Rome!

The first of November First of November in Romevatican cityhalloweenAll Saints long holiday2 NovemberDeath long holidaysColosseum via del CorsoPicassoMonet CaravaggioTrastevereMonti Campo de’ Fiori

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