nat4b
nat4b
31 October 2022, 20:49

Why pumpkin? And where did Jack's lantern come from?

Why pumpkin? And where did Jack's lantern come from?
Halloween, or as it was originally called - All Hallows' Eve has changed a lot. Once a holiday alien to us, it was the same for Americans, and then turned into one of the main events of mid-autumn.

Of course, its celebration for the countries of Eastern Europe cannot be called a very important event either. Especially now. But among young people and children, the opportunity to change clothes and beg for sweets is held in high esteem.

Especially the images of some witches, ghosts, vampires and all evil spirits. Yes, and the appearance of any characters from the past in costumes of past eras, and even with accessories of those times. True, finding such attributes is not always easy. But not for users who visit the section of the Violity website "Collectible items made of fabric, leather and fur."
In general, many legends are associated with this holiday. To begin with, the pumpkin as a decoration began to be used much later than the story of Jack's lantern. On January 16, 1836, the Dublin Penny Journal published a long story about the "Jack Lantern" legend, although it does not mention that the lantern was carved from a vegetable. Interesting from what?

In the original Irish version, the miser Jack deceived the devil, and he did not let him into hell. But even the poor fellow did not receive a pass to heaven in his life. And so he remained wandering with a lantern made of turnips, which he gnawed until his death. And the “glitter in the eyes” of the turnip lantern was added by the devil - a couple of coals, so that it was easier for poor Jack to roam the earth. This legend, almost unchanged, frightened children almost until the middle of the 19th century. Before the immigration of the Irish to the United States.
Plaster cast of a traditional Irish jack-o'-lantern at the Museum of Rural Life, Ireland
Plaster cast of a traditional Irish jack-o'-lantern at the Museum of Rural Life, Ireland
And the Americans have always been famous for their ability to find a "gold mine". It even happened to poor Jack's turnip lantern. The farmers thought, why not use the root crop as a decoration. Today it is difficult to say why they decided to replace the turnip with pumpkin, but the inhabitants of America took up the cultivation of new varieties of this vegetable thoroughly.

And either a lot of peel remained from the pumpkin, or because of the larger place in the “skull” for coals, but closer to the 1920s, the demand for it acquired new meanings. It began to be used not only for cereals or cookies, but also for making Jack-o'-lanterns for Halloween.

By the way, you heard that in Ireland and Britain, other root crops were taken for holiday lanterns - not only from turnips, but also from beets, rutabaga.

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