Easter is the earliest Christian festival, celebrating Jesus' resurrection from the grave.
The origin of the word Easter is disputed, but is probably related to the fact that the sun rises in the East. The original name was Paschal, from the Jewish feast of Passover, referring to the Israelites' rescue from bondage when the avenging angel passed over their homes (Exodus 12:1-14), the Israelites' passage through the Red Sea (Exodus 13:17-14:30); and Jesus' passage through death to new life.
Gold is the color for Easter day, marking this day as the "Queen of Feasts." White is also used and is the color for the season of Easter.
Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday after the first full moon after the Spring Equinox. It falls between March 22 and April 25. This date was decided at the Council of Nicea in 325. Read more about this here.
In the sixteenth Century, the West accepted the new Gregorian calendar while Eastern and Russian churches kept the Julian calendar, that is why they celebrate Easter on a different date.
Some dates related to Easter are celebrated on the following dates by the Roman Catholic and Protestant churches:
Western Easters are the basis of public holidays, and are the dates celebrated by Western religions.
The History of the Easter Egg
The egg is nature's perfect package. It has, during the span of history, represented mystery, magic, medicine, food and omen. It is the universal symbol of Easter celebrations throughout the world and has been dyed, painted, adorned and embellished in the celebration of its special symbolism.
While the gaily colored cardboard ones and rich chocolate ones that we enjoy are quite recent in origin, the real egg, decorated with colors or gilt, has been acknowledged as a symbol of continuing life and resurrection since pre-Christian spring celebrations.
Given as gifts by the ancient Greeks, Persians, and Chinese at their spring festivals, the egg also appears in pagan mythology, where we read of the Sun-Bird being hatched from the World Egg.
In some pagan customs, the Heaven and Earth were thought to have been formed from two halves of an egg. As the egg was an obvious symbol to early Christians of Jesus' Resurrection, it was felt to be a most appropriate and holy part of the Eastertide celebration.
The ban of eating eggs during the 46 days of Lent established in the 9th century, is what made the egg so popular at Easter. The eggs were collected and saved and, once the fasting was over, were distributed to the servants and children, who generally enjoyed them in a huge Easter omelette.
As the practice became more refined, the nobility got into the act, using the last days of winter to decorate eggs to give to their beloved, their master or the King. By the 16th century, these springtime eggs were all the rage at the court of France, with some being decorated by a few of the greatest artists of the day.
However, the popularity of the Easter egg reached untold heights at the court of the Czar of Russia. By the end of the 19th century, the court jeweller, Carl Fabergé, was making fabulous eggs of gold, crystal and porcelain.
Today, hand-decorated eggs are exchanged as springtime gifts in many cultures and play a very important role in religious ceremonies on Easter morning. Some families carefully save their egg collection, passing them on from generation to generation.
Whether straight out of ancient tradition, brought from Rome on the sound of church bells, or mysteriously laid by the Easter Bunny, the decorated egg, be it cooked or raw, full or hollow, made of wood, clay or silver, or of sugar or chocolate, will no doubt remain an undeniable token of friendship and love.
The History of the Easter Bunny
The Easter bunny has its origin in pre-Christian fertility lore. The hare and the rabbit were the most fertile animals known and they served as symbols of the new life during the Spring season. The bunny as an Easter symbol seems to have its origins in Germany, where it was first mentioned in German writings in the 1500s.
The first edible Easter bunnies were made in Germany during the early 1800s and were made of pastry and sugar.
The Easter bunny was introduced to American folklore by the German settlers who arrived in the Pennsylvania Dutch country during the 1700s. The arrival of the "Oschter Haws" was considered "childhood's greatest pleasure" next to a visit from Christ-Kindel on Christmas Eve.
The children believed that if they were good the "Oschter Haws" would lay a nest of colored eggs. The children would build their nest in a secluded place in the home, the barn or the garden. Boys would use their caps and girls their bonnets to make the nests.
The use of elaborate Easter baskets would come later as the tradition of the Easter Bunny spread through out the country.
Question: How do you catch a unique Easter Bunny?
Question: How do you catch a tame Easter Bunny?
Question: What's the best way to send a letter to the Easter Bunny?
Question: What did the rabbit say to the carrot?
Question: Do you know why rabbits are so good in math?
Question: How do bunnies stay healthy?
Question: What do you call a dumb bunny?
Question: How can you tell which rabbits are the oldest in a group?
Can you read this?
C D E D B D Easter bunnies?
All I Need to Know About Life I Learned From the Easter Bunny!
A lady opened her refrigerator and saw a rabbit sitting on one of the shelves. "What are you doing in there?" she asked.
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