Every October, carved pumpkins peer out from porches and doorsteps in the United States and other parts of the world. Gourd-like orange fruits inscribed with ghoulish faces and illuminated by candles are a sure sign that Halloween and the holiday season is upon us. The practice of decorating “jack-o’-lanterns” – the name comes from an Irish folktale about a man named Stingy Jack – originated in Ireland, where large turnips and potatoes served as an early canvas. Irish immigrants brought the tradition to America, home of the pumpkin, and it became an integral part of Halloween festivities.
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