Dia De Los Muertos, or the Day of the Dead, is a three-day celebration at the beginning of November that honors the deceased. The heritage originates from Mexico, yet the holiday is currently observed in Mexican-Amerihave the right to neighborhoods in the UNITED STATE, Spain and also some Central and also South Amerihave the right to nations.

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Here’s what you have to know about it:

When it’s celebrated

The main dates are Nov.1— Dia de los Angelitos, dedicated to deceased youth—and also Nov. 2, Día de los Difuntos, for adults. Some think in beginning celebrations on the evening of Oct. 31, proceeding to the graveyard wbelow it is believed that the souls of young youngsters increase at midnight.

It’s not Halloween

While fatality and also spirits frequently inspire are afraid on Halloween, Dia De Los Muertos celebprices and honors the dead instead. The tradition dates earlier to the Aztecs, that had a month-long celebration of fatality in honor of Mictecacihuatl, the goddess of the underhuman being. Due to the intervention of the Catholic, Spanish Conquistadores, the celebration currently corresponds through All Saints’ and All Souls’ days.

How it’s celebrated

Throughout Dia De Los Muertos, family members visit cemeteries to host vigils and also bring ofrendas (offerings) to the deceased, such flowers, candles and food. Parties are regularly hosted throughout the annual event, which have the right to involve the whole community, and also it is believed that spirits will bless those who honor their dead loved ones via excellent luck, wisdom and also defense.


A woguy through her face painted to look prefer the renowned Mexican number referred to as "Catrina", poses for a photograph as she takes component in the annual Catrina Fest in Mexico City on Nov. 1, 2015.

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At residence, families develop altars and honor the dead through sweetbreads, the deceased’s favorite food, marigolds (the freduced of death), fresh water, trinkets and also sugar skulls—which are inscribed via the name of a deceased family member and also eaten as a reminder of death being a sweet continuation of the cycle of life. Skulls are typically linked through the heritage and are thneed to date earlier to the pre-Hispanic era. Mexican artist José Guadalupe Posada repurposed the skull in the 20th century, developing the famous picture of a skeleton donning a hat recognized as Calavera Catrina.

How the legacy is evolving

The celebration is constantly evolving. In some parts of Mexico, children don costumes— quite choose Halloween— for the Mexican variation of trick-or-dealing with. On Oct. 29, Mexico City held its first Day of the Dead Parade, which officials say was motivated by the opening scenes of James Bond film, Spectre.