Is Animeddas, Su Mortu Mortu: Halloween in Sardinia

halloween in SardiniaBefore the globalization of the Halloween celebration, in Sardinia, the remembrance of the All Souls’ Day was called with other names. But the coincidence of the period of the year makes think of common traditions from time out of mind, before religions institutionalized celebrations, when manhood lived to the rhythm of seasons. All Souls’ Day, in Sardinia, changes its name depending on the different areas of the isle. In the North it’s called Is Animeddas, in the South: Su Mortu Mortu. But this two names aren’t all and change from village to village. In Seui, for example, it’s known like Su Purgadoriu. Anthropologists tell us about the use of commemorating the dead souls by preparing a dinner of maccheroni, a handmade pasta, a wine glass and a full water jug on a table without cutlery. A lit oil lamp was on the table to let the souls eating in comfort. Houses without a table set up this way would have been haunted by angry (and hungry) spirits. There’s something similar between the Anglo-Saxon Halloween and the Is Animeddas of Sardinia: the night before Ognissanti (All Souls’ Day), children of small villages go door to door asking for fruits and candies. The best way of discovering this traditions is to live at least one Halloween in Sardinia.

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