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What is Día de los Muertos and why is it celebrated?

Dia de los Muertos is a celebration of both life and death and a chance to show love and respect for family members who have passed on. So why is Dia de los Muertos an important holiday? For the uninitiated, Dia de los Muertos, also known as the Day of the Dead, is not the Mexican version of Halloween..

What is Día de los Muertos celebration?

Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is a celebration of life and death. While the holiday originated in Mexico, it is celebrated all over Latin America with colorful calaveras (skulls) and calacas (skeletons). Learn how the Day of the Dead started and the traditions that make it unique.

Where did Day of the Dead originate?

The Day of the Dead or Día de Muertos is an ever-evolving holiday that traces its earliest roots to the Aztec people in what is now central Mexico. The Aztecs used skulls to honor the dead a millennium before the Day of the Dead celebrations emerged.

How does Mexico celebrate Day of the Dead?

On this holiday, Mexicans remember and honor their deceased loved ones. Mexicans visit cemeteries, decorate the graves and spend time there, in the presence of their deceased friends and family members. They also make elaborately decorated altars (called ofrendas) in their homes to welcome the spirits.

What is pan de muerto often eaten with?

Pan de muerto is best served warm with coffee or hot chocolate.

Why did Dia de los Muertos start?

Origins of Dia de Muertos When the Spaniards came to Mexico and introduced Catholicism to the indigenous people they blended traditions and beliefs to create their own customs. Dia de Muertos came to be from a mixture of the Aztec festival dedicated to the goddess, Mictecacihuatl, with the Catholic influence.

How do you celebrate Dia de los Muertos at home?

How to celebrate Día de Los Muertos

  1. Visit the gravesite of a loved one.
  2. Take a picnic to the cemetery where your loved one rests.
  3. Bake pan de muerto.
  4. Set up an altar in your home.
  5. Make your own sugar skulls.
  6. Host a Day of the Dead feast.
  7. Attend a Day of the Dead parade.
  8. Dress up as a Catrina or Catrín.

What does Pan de Muerto symbolize?

Pan de muerto is an essential part of a Día de los Muertos home altar or shrine, also called an ofrenda. The bread adorns the altar openly or in a basket, and is meant to nourish the dead when they return to the land of the living during Día de los Muertos.

What is the story behind the pan de muerto?

A brief history of pan de muerto The tradition dates back to the era of the Spanish Conquest. Catholic evangelizers came up with the idea of using bread to depict the actual human hearts that were displayed in offerings and sacrifices by the ancient Aztecs. They would even paint it red to give it a bloody appearance.

Why is Dia de los Muertos a day of celebration?

The holiday commemorates the return of deceased relatives and loved ones to Earth to celebrate with their loved ones during the two-day period, according to UNESCO. The celebration also represents how influential Mexico’s indigenous communities were when developing the holiday.

What are facts about Dia de los Muertos?

10 things you may not know about Día de los Muertos The holiday is not related to Halloween. Traditionally, there is no parade to celebrate the holiday. Día de los Muertos is a two-day celebration. Flowers play an important role in the tradition. Ofrendas include symbols of the four elements. The original celebration was more than two days. Monarch butterflies are a symbol of the holiday.

Which countries celebrate Dia de los Muertos?

Dia de los Muertos is celebrated throughout Latin America, including South America (Brazilians call the festival Finados) and the Caribbean. In the United States and Canada, the tradition exists only in areas with a large Latin American population, such as Los Angeles, California, or Vancouver, British Columbia , Canada.

What do people eat on Dia de los Muertos?

Day of the Dead food. Traditional Dia de los Muertos food varies from region to region, with familiar dishes including pan de muerto (a sweet, sugar-covered glazed bread), sugar skulls and mole (a rich chilli and chocolate sauce for chicken, beans or meat). Advertisement.