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ELC Boston ELC Los Angeles ELC Santa Barbara Trick or Treat! Halloween Vocabulary October 16th, 2014

In just two weeks ELC will celebrate Halloween on Friday, October 31st.  On this day throughout the country children and adults alike enjoy the holiday by dressing up in scary (or not so scary) costumes and by decorating their homes (or workplaces) with pumpkins, spiders witches and other ghoulish creatures.  On Halloween night children take to the streets and go door-to-door telling jokes and riddles in exchange for candies and sweets.

To help better experience this special holiday, ELC has comprised a list of Halloween terms and their definitions.  Here’s to another spooky, eerie and fun Halloween!

apparition – a ghost or ghostlike image of a person.

beast – an animal, especially a large or dangerous four-footed one.

bizarre – very strange or unusual, especially so as to cause interest or amusement.

bloodcurdling – causing terror or horror.

bogeyman – an imaginary evil spirit, referred to typically to frighten children.

cadaver – a corpse designated for medical examination and/or experimentation.

casket – a rectangular box made of wood and other material designed to contain a deceased individual for burial.

cauldron – a large metal pot with a lid and handle, used by witches for cooking over an open fire.

corpse – a dead body, especially of a human being rather than an animal.

creepy – causing an unpleasant feeling of fear or unease.

crypt – an underground room or vault beneath a church, used as a chapel or burial place.

disguise – give (someone or oneself) a different appearance in order to conceal one’s identity.

dreadful – causing or involving great suffering, fear, or unhappiness; extremely bad or serious.

eerie – strange and frightening.

elf – a supernatural creature of folk tales, typically represented as a small, elusive figure in human form with pointed ears, magical powers, and a capricious nature.

enchant – fill (someone) with great delight; charm.

fantasy – the activity of imagining things, especially things that are impossible or improbable.

ghastly – causing great horror or fear; frightful or macabre.

ghoul – an evil spirit or phantom, especially one supposed to rob graves and feed on dead bodies.

goblin – a mischievous, ugly, dwarf-like creature of folklore.

gory – involving or showing violence and bloodshed.

grim – forbidding or uninviting.

grisly – causing horror or disgust

gruesome – causing repulsion or horror; grisly.

hair-raising – extremely alarming, astonishing, or frightening.

haunted house – a building often perceived as being inhabited by disembodied spirits of the deceased who may have been former residents or were familiar with the property.

hayride – a ride taken for pleasure in a wagon carrying hay.

hobgoblin – a mischievous imp or sprite.

hocus pocus – meaningless talk or activity, often designed to draw attention away from and disguise what is actually happening.

horrify – fill with horror; shock greatly.

jack-o-lantern – a lantern made from a hollowed-out pumpkin in which holes are cut to represent facial features, typically made at Halloween.

jumpsuit – a garment incorporating trousers and a sleeved top in one piece, worn as a fashion item, protective garment, or uniform.

macabre – disturbing and horrifying because of involvement with or depiction of death and injury

masquerade – pretend to be someone one is not.

morbid – characterized by or appealing to an abnormal and unhealthy interest in disturbing and unpleasant subjects, especially death and disease.

mummy – a body of a human being or animal that has been ceremonially preserved by removal of the internal organs, treatment with natron and resin, and wrapping in bandages.


mysterious – difficult or impossible to understand, explain, or identify.

spooky – sinister or ghostly in a way that causes fear and unease.

startling – very surprising, astonishing, or remarkable.

supernatural – attributed to some force beyond scientific understanding or the laws of nature.

superstition – a widely held but unjustified belief in supernatural causation leading to certain consequences of an action or event, or a practice based on such a belief.

troll – a mythical, cave-dwelling being depicted in folklore as either a giant or a dwarf, typically having a very ugly appearance.

unearthly – unnatural or mysterious, especially in a disturbing way.

warlock – a man who practices witchcraft; a sorcerer.

werewolf – a person who changes for periods of time into a wolf, typically when there is a full moon.

wizardry – the art or practice of magic.

wrath – extreme anger (chiefly used for humorous or rhetorical effect).

zombie – a corpse said to be revived by witchcraft, especially in certain African and Caribbean religions.

ELC students dressed up in Halloween Costumes from 2012!

ELC halloween 2012