The Jack of Hearts is number 11 in a pack of playing cards, as are the Jacks of clubs, diamonds and spades.

He is also the villain in a Nursery Rhyme.

The Queen of Hearts
She baked some tarts
All on a summer’s day
The Knave of Hearts
He stole those tarts
And took them right away.

Another Jack eating in a Nursery Rhyme is Little Jack Horner.

Little Jack Horner sat in a corner
Eating his Christmas pie.
He stuck in his thumb and pulled out a plum
And said, “What a good boy am I”.

More food with Jack Sprat: 

Jack Sprat would eat no fat:
His wife would eat no lean
And so between the two of them
They wiped the platter clean.

And drink in another rhyme:

Jack and Jill went up the hill
To fetch a pail of water;
Jack fell down and broke his crown
And Jill came tumbling after.

Up Jack got and home did trot
As fast as he could caper.
He went to bed to mend his head
With vinegar and brown paper.

Jill came in, how she did grin
To see jack’s paper plaster;
Mother vexed, did whip her next
For causing Jack’s disaster.

Yet another Nursery Rhyme about Jack is

Jack be nimble; Jack be quick;
Jack jump over the candlestick.

A Jack of all trades is an expression which I have mentioned previously.

Every Jack has his Jill is a saying.

Jack the lad is a well-known expression.  A lad can be an apprentice or someone who gets into mischief.

Jacks and dabs
were two playground games which were popular with girls.  The game of dabs is slightly simpler, so I’ll describe that first.  Its alternative name is five stones.  Dabs are light-coloured cubes about 1/2 inch to each side.  The game involved sitting on the ground and throwing the dabs in the air and catching them on the back of the hand, then throwing them up again and catching them normally, starting with one, then one more each time.

Jacks were metal with arms.  A set included a small rubber ball.  The jacks were placed on the ground.  The ball was bounced and the player picked up a jack and caught the ball before it bounced again.  Then she repeated it picking up one more jack each time the ball was bounced.  The game is also known as knucklebones.

File:The Childrens Museum of Indianapolis - Jacks.jpg

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:The_Childrens_Museum_of_Indianapolis_-_Jacks.jpg Photo credit Wikimedia Commons

This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.
Attribution: The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis

A jack for a car is used to raise it while a wheel is being changed.

The Concise Oxford Dictionary gives five separate meanings for “jack” as well as many related phrases.  I do not intend to cover all of them here.

Jack is a nickname for John, perhaps the most popular name for a boy.

One of Jesus’ twelve disciples was called John.  He wrote five of the books in the New Testament – a gospel, three letters (or epistles) and Revelation.

His gospel includes a verse, which is perhaps the best known in the Bible – John Chapter 3 verse 16 (NIV)  For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.

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