The custom of making gourd lanterns, or Jack-o-lanterns, dates back to an old Celtic tradition. According to her, they help souls find their way to purgatory.
Where did the tradition of making pumpkin lanterns come from?
The tradition of making a pumpkin lantern for Halloween dates back centuries. According to an old Irish legend, it was invented by a blacksmith named Jack. He was a deeply drunkard, and also very stingy. Jack twice deceived the devil and received a promise from him not to build all sorts of intrigues for him, but soon the blacksmith died without having time to take advantage of this.
After his death, the Irishman did not go to heaven or hell and was forced to wander the earth. Satan threw a piece of coal to the blacksmith, which he put into an empty pumpkin and began to wander around the world with this improvised lamp.
How to make a pumpkin lamp
To do this, you need to choose a pumpkin of the correct spherical shape, bright orange. Any size fruit will work to make a pumpkin head, but the best fixtures are made from medium sized pumpkins.
In addition, you will need:
- sharp knife;
- the spoon;
Make a stencil. Traditionally, the pumpkin head depicts 2 eyes and a nose in the form of triangles and a large mouth. But modern craftsmen cut out a wide variety of subjects. They can also be drawn on a sheet and used as a template.
Use a sharp knife to cut off the top of the pumpkin. Do this at an angle so that later it stays in place and does not fall inside. Peel the seeds and pulp from the fruit. Scrape the walls with a spoon, their thickness should be no more than two centimeters.
Attach the stencil with pieces of tape to the side where the face will be. Now make punctures with an awl along the contours of the drawing. In this case, the holes should be located quite often at a distance of 2-3 mm from each other.
Remove the template and start cutting out the design with a sharp knife. Cut through the walls of the fruit. Do this slowly and carefully. Use special carving knives to cut small parts. After cutting along all the contours, remove the cut parts and carefully cut the flesh at an angle so that it is not visible from the front side.
Immediately grease the cut sections of the pumpkin with a small amount of vegetable oil, so the pulp will not deteriorate for a long time, and the lantern will last longer. By tradition, a burning candle is placed inside Jack's lamp, but it will be much safer if you place an ordinary battery-powered flashlight in the pumpkin.