Add, then, the combination of pagan and religious beliefs and interpretations into the mix and, surprise, surprise, even more convolution! So, a tradition developed whereby demonic faces were carved out of vegetables – originally turnips – called jack-o’-lanterns. This practise originated from an Irish myth about Stingy Jack, who tricked the Devil for his own monetary gain. The myth elaborated that when Jack died, God would not allow him into heaven, and the Devil wouldn’t allow him into hell, so Jack was sentenced to roam the earth for eternity. It was believed that the carved demonic faces would frighten away Jack’s wandering soul. Therefore, when Irish immigrants moved America, they began carving jack-o’-lanterns from pumpkins, as these were native to the region.
So, now you know!