Read this text and answer the questions you will find at the bottom of this post.
The history of Jack O'Lantern
The history of the Jack O’ Lantern actually comes from Irish folklore centered around a certain trickster who went by the name of Stingy Jack. The legend says that Stingy Jack decided it would be a good idea to meet the Devil at a local pub and have some drinks. After they both decided they had enough for the night, Stingy Jack had no intentions of paying his dirnks so he convinced the Devil to turn himself into a coin and use that to pay for the drinks instead. The Devil fell for this trick and tuned himself into a coin, Jack promptly put the evil money into his pants pocket where it lay next to a silver cross. The cross prevented the Devil from turning back. Jack made a deal with the Devil, he made him promise to leave him alone for one year and to not take his soul when he dies. The Devil agreed and was able to transform back.
A year passes and Mr. Devil decided to see how our good buddy Jack has been holding up. After a few minutes of “What’s up?” conversation, Jack convinced the Devil to climb a tree outside his house to get some fruit. Not sure why, but the Devil agreed and climbed to the top of the tree to reach the fruit upon which Jack carved a cross in the trunk of the tree preventing the Devil coming back down. Jack then made another deal with the Devil to not bother him from the next 10 years. The Devil agreed and Jack let him back down.
Not too long after this, Jack died.
Jack’s first stop was Heaven but God would not let him enter Heaven for being such a trickster. So Jack went down to Hell, but the Devil kept true to his word and would not claim his soul. Jack had nowhere to go and was left in complete darkness. The Devil gave Jack a little burning ember from the flames of Hell so it would never go out. Jack quickly carved out a hole in a turnip (which was supposed to have been his favorite food) and placed the burning ember within. Thanks to this lantern he could light his path.
He went on to be known as Jack of the Lantern and in time just, Jack O’ Lantern.
When this tradition hit America, the turnip was replaced with a more indigenous and familiar food, the pumpkin. People carve pumpkins to celebrate Halloween the night of October the 31st. The pumpkins remind people of the story of Jack O'Lantern, and that is why they carry his name.
- Where does the pumpkins tradition come from?
- What happens to the devil when he becomes a coin?
- What is the first deal between Jack and the Devil?
- What happens the second time Jack and the Devil meet?
- Does Jack go to heaven?
- Does Jack go to Hell?
- How does Jack light his path?
- Why do people put pumpkins with scary faces in their windows?