Friday, November 12, 2010

"Stingy Jack"

He is Jack the Jack-o-Lantern!

Halloween is a time for fun and revelry but where did the
tradition of carving and lighting a Jack-o-lantern come from?
We may save this information for older children but the story is quite interesting!

It comes from an old Irish myth about “Stingy Jack.”
Old Jack was a miscreant who enjoying tricking people. He was even so bold as to try to fool the Devil.
On one occasion, Jack managed to trap the Devil in a tree. In exchange for his freedom the Devil promised not to take Jack’s soul when he died. Needless to say, tricky Jack eventually died and because of his wicked ways, he was denied entrance into heaven. When he arrived at Hell’s door, the Devil kept his promise and did not take Jack’s soul. Instead, he doomed Jack to walk the earth at night for all eternity. As a boon, The Devil gave him a piece of coal from Hell's fire. Jack took the coal and dropped it into a hollowed turnip using it to light the dark roads he travelled. Hence the birth of the Jack-o-lantern . When the Irish
immigrated to America they replaced the turnip with a pumpkin because it was much larger and provided better light for them on all Hallows Eve.

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