Abandoned ireland

 

Hallows' Eve House,

Co. Offaly.

A Halloween Tale

There is an Irish tale about a man nicknamed Stingy Jack, a greedy, gambling, hard drinking old farmer who played with the Devil.


According to the tale, Stingy Jack invited the Devil to drink with him. True to his name, Stingy Jack didn't want to pay for his drinks and convinced the Devil to turn himself into a coin that Jack could use to buy their drinks. Jack however liked the look of the golden coin, and decided to keep the money and put it into his pocket next to a silver cross. The cross prevented the Devil from changing back into his original form. Eventually on one dark drunken night, Stingy Jack freed the Devil under the condition that he would never again bother Jack and that when he died, the Devil would not claim his soul.


Soon after this day Stingy Jack died and as the legend goes, God would not let such an unsavoury figure into heaven. True to his word the Devil would not let Jack into hell either and packed him off into the night with only a burning coal to light his way. Jack put the coal into a carved-out turnip and has been roaming the Earth ever since.


The Irish began to refer to this ghostly figure as "Jack of the Lantern," and then, simply "Jack O'Lantern."



It's a grim dark day when I finally track down the house of Stingy Jack.


The story I’ve been told about this place goes something like this...


When the Devil sent Stingy Jack packing, Stingy Jacks cottage was left to fall down. It was years and years later that somebody claimed his wreck of a cottage and started to build up a house around Jacks old crumbling walls.


Seven years later on the cold dark evening of 31st October, Stingy Jack came calling on his old house.


On that All Hallows’ Eve, when the dead walk among the living and the veils between past, present and future are lifted in prophecy and divination, Jack took all in the house with him.


The occupants of the house were never seen again.


Yet on each All Hallows’ Eve you can still hear their screams...


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