Mischief Night
4th November 1790

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Mischief night was -and possibly still is - a redoubtable tradition in some areas of Britain (notably Yorkshire) until recent years. Today it has been largely supplanted by trick or treat excursions on Hallowe'en - although the practice still lingers in a few pockets wherever sufficiently errant youth can still be found in large enough numbers.

Divorced from the promise of 'treats', Mischief Night is entirely based around tricks - from the simply ringing doorbells and running to the throwing of eggs at windows or hedge-hopping. Originally it is thought that the mischief was played as part of May Day celebrations but moved nearer to Bonfire Night as populations became urbanised in the 18th and 19th centuries.

The precise date actually varies from place to place. In Yorkshire, Mischief Night (also known sometimes as 'Miggy Night' or 'Mischievous Night') is/was traditionally held on the night before Bonfire Night. In other parts of the country, the tradition is held on the night before Hallowe'en.

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Author: Ian Freud   |  Last updated: 9th July 2013 | © Weird Island 2010-2020
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