Bunnies and Eggs are probably the first things that pop into your mind when someone mentions Easter. If you guessed that it has something to do with symbols of fertility, you were right. However, the story is a bit longer than that.
Story Behind Bunnies and Eggs
The origins of Easter come from early pagan celebrations of springtime renewal. People celebrated the Goddess of Fertility and Dawn, called Eostre. She would appear in a form of a rabbit and in most cases have eggs with her.
When Christianity spread across Europe, the existing celebrations merged with the new religion. Missionaries thought that it will be better to blend the Christian holidays into pagan traditions to make the transition smoother.
The earliest evidence of modern-day Easter Bunnies and Eggs date back to the 1600s. They were first mentioned in German writings. Easter hare or ‘Oschter Haws’ was believed to lay nests of colourful eggs for children who were good. The story of the egg-laying rabbit was later brought to America by German immigrants.
Why Rabbit and Not a Chicken?
Bunnies and Eggs isn’t such a logical connection as Chicken and Eggs. However, rabbits are along with eggs, a symbol of fertility and spring. Along the way, the real meaning behind it got lost, so today we have magical rabbits who lay colourful eggs.
Eggs were also a symbol because they marked the end of Lenten fasting. On Easter morning, people could finally dig into real food. That’s pretty much the tradition we hold onto, except many people dismissed the fasting part.
Today, christians mark the resurrection of Jesus Christ with this holiday. Whatever the reason for the celebration of Easter, it is still very fun for the kids as well as adults. A little break, reminder that warmer days are just around the corner and good food on the table!