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Q:
Why do we carve pumkins on Halloween?
A:

The jack-o’-lantern story comes from an Irish myth about a fellow named “Stingy Jack.” One night in a pub, Jack tricked the devil into buying his drinks and also made him promise never to claim his soul! But it’s never clever to make a deal with the Devil. When Stingy Jack eventually died, Heaven didn’t want him, and he couldn’t go down into Hell, so the Devil doomed him to walk the night as a ghost, with a glowing coal in a turnip to light his way. Poor Stingy Jack became Jack of the Lantern, or “Jack O’Lantern.” Irish folks soon began carving out scary faces in turnips and potatoes on Halloween to scare away Jack and other evil spirits. Irish immigrants brought this story with them when they came to the U.S. in the 18th and 19th centuries, and soon found that pumpkins make great jack-o’-lanterns.

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May 24, 2018

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