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  2. Preguntas Importantes What is el Día de los muertos? Who celebrates it? Why is it celebrated? Why do we study this holiday?

  3. La historia El Día de los muertos is an ancient festivity that was intended in prehispanic México to celebrate both children and the dead.

  4. This Mexican holiday is best described as a time when Mexican families remember their deceased loved ones, and also the continuity of life.

  5. Who celebrates el Día de los muertos? Which Spanish speaking country predominantly celebrates this holiday to remember loved ones who have died?

  6. When do Mexicans celebrate el Día de los muertos?

  7. Originally the indigenous people of Mexico used to celebrate el Día de los muertos during the last few days of July and the first few days of August. When the Spanish Conquistadors landed in what is now Mexico, they encountered natives practicing a ritual that seemed to laugh at death.

  8. The dates of the holiday changed so that the holiday coincided with the Christian holiday of All Hallows Eve (Día de los Santos) or October 31. The Conquistadors tried to get the natives to forget about their Day of the Dead celebration, but it did not work. The natives continued to practice this holiday.

  9. Is this true? Día de los muertos is celebrated every year on November 2. Many people think that this holiday is celebrated on this date because of Halloween.

  10. How do Mexicans celebrate el Día de los muertos?

  11. In México, people visit the cemetery where their loved ones are buried. They decorate gravesites with marigold flowers and candles. They bring toys for dead children and bottles of tequila for adults. They sit on picnic blankets next to the gravesites and eat the favorite food of their loved ones.

  12. What else do they place on the gravesites of their deceased loved ones?

  13. In the United States and in Mexico’s larger cities, families build alters in their homes, dedicating them to the dead. They surround these alters with flowers, food and pictures of the deceased. They light candles and place them next to the altar.

  14. Is elDía de los muertos supposed to be a sad occasion or a happy occasion?

  15. Rather than mourn those who have passed on, we celebrate death as part of the cycle of life. Think happy processions, music, dancing y más! El día de los muertos is considered a happy occasion. Because of the warm, social environment, the colorful setting, and the abundance of food, drink and good company, this holiday has many pleasant overtones. This holiday celebrates the cycle of life.

  16. What are some of the foods eaten when celebrating el Día de los muertos?

  17. One of the foods that is eaten by families on el Día de los muertos is “pan de muertos” or bread of the dead. Inside the pan de muerto the baker places a plastic toy skeleton in the loaf. It is considered good luck if you are the first person to bite into the toy skeleton.

  18. Also, family and friends give one another gifts consisting of sugar skeletons or other items with a death motif. The gift is considered more valuable if the skull or skeleton is decorated with one’s own name.

  19. How is this holiday different from Halloween? What are some differences you noticed? What are some similarities?

  20. El fin

  21. The following website shows an example of one of the alters created for Diego Rivera, a famous Mexican muralist and painter.