Gourdon Devine
Professor of Botany

Jack O' Lanterns

The Legend of Jack

Show your Pride this Halloween

2006 Pumpkin Carving Contest

How Creative are You?

Ghoul Skool is looking for the best pumpkin carver in the world. Simply carve you pumpkin, save a picture of it and send it to us as a jpeg at:

We'll post on our site all pictures recieved, and send you a special gift for participating. All photos must be received by Oct 30, 2006.

Start Carving!


Jack was a carouser, a scamp, a trickster. He knew that he had better change his ways, but didn't. Then one night the Devil came to pay a visit on Jack in a local pub where Jack as usual was having a good time. When the Devil told Jack it was time, Jack simply said, let's have a drink for the road. The Devil obliged. When the drink was finished, Jack had no money to pay so he asked the Devil to change himself into a pence so Jack could pay for the drink. When he did, Jack took the pence and put it in a purse fashioned with a cross on the catch, trapping the Devil inside. Jack agreed to let the Devil loose if he promised not to return for 10 years. Jack figured that would be plenty of time to repent. It wasn't. To the day, ten years later, the Devil returned as Jack was walking down a road. "It's Time Jack." Jack surveyed his surroundings. There was a large apple tree with beautiful red apples. "Sure would be nice to have an apple for the road. The devil was wary but agreed, the apples sure were delicious looking. As the Devil went up the tree for the apples, Jack nailed a cross to the tree trunk, again trappinthe Devil. Jack made the Devil agree to never return for him and Jack again set the Devil free. Time wore on and Jack, though still highly spirited, had aged to the point where his body simply quit. He journeyed to heaven but unrepentant, was barred entry. Jack went down below but when the Devil saw him he kicked him out, giving him only an ember of coal to light his way, after all, a bargain is a bargain. Jack the trickster, to this day, walks in the darkness of oblivion, carrying a hollowed out turnip, with an ember of coal to light his way.

(In America, turnips gave way to the native pumpkins as the lantern of choice)

These patterns and more are available at