The History of the Easter Bunny and Eggs

Where did it all begin?

The+History+of+the+Easter+Bunny+and+Eggs

When I hear Easter, I think of two things, the church and the Easter eggs and bunny. But I recently thought, if Easter is really about how Jesus died on the cross and resurrected how did the Easter bunny eggs come about?

Apparently, the beginning of Easter started way back into the Medieval era. It originally started with Easter eggs but it may or may not have belonged to one specific religion tradition but multiple.

According to TIME, there are two ways that the origins of Easter could’ve come. It either could’ve started throughout multiple religions or just Christianity.

One explains that it could’ve even begun as early as the Anglo-Saxon festival. Then Christian missionaries celebrated holy days near the same time as pagan festivals where at one point they combined, bringing over some symbols, one of them being eggs.

Website, History.com, explains, “The egg, an ancient symbol of new life, has been associated with pagan festivals celebrating spring. From a Christian perspective, Easter eggs are said to represent Jesus’ emergence from the tomb and resurrection.”

But there is an alternate story that TIME brings up, what if the symbol of eggs did stick with Christianity? If it did, it would’ve been practical, during those times many fasted and had dealt with strict rules. Many of them didn’t eat cheese, milk, cream eggs, or any types of meat. So they boiled the eggs, stored them, and distributed them at a later time.

However there’s more, we can’t forget about dying the eggs. The earliest bit of evidence that shows eggs being dyed goes way back to the 1200’s with Edward the I.

TIME states, “…the household of Edward I bought 450 eggs to be colored or covered in gold leaf to be distributed among “the royal entourage” for Easter.”

Then in the 13th century, dyed eggs were passed on as gifts. But mainly in the late 19th century and early 20th century that dyed eggs became something that they gave to the children, which was originally for the church. Around then, Easter officially became a holiday in many regions. At the end, many became invested in the holiday, celebrating and hiding the eggs.

But how did the Easter bunny come about, a rabbit is never mentioned in the Bible?

According to TIME, “One theory is that the symbol of the rabbit stems from pagan tradition, specifically the festival of Eostre—a goddess of fertility whose animal symbol was a bunny. Rabbits, known for their energetic breeding, have traditionally symbolized fertility.”

But apparently the Easter bunny originated in America.

Good Housekeeping explains with the help of History.com and state, “…it was first introduced in the 1700s by German immigrants in Pennsylvania, who reportedly brought over their tradition of an egg-laying hare named “Osterhase” or “Oschter Haws.” As the story goes, the rabbit would lay colorful eggs as gifts to children who were good — so the kids would make nests in which the bunny could leave his eggs, and would even sometimes leave out carrots in case the hare got hungry! Eventually, the custom spread across America to become a widespread Easter tradition — and over time, the fabled bunny’s delivery even expanded from just eggs to include other treats such as chocolate and toys.”

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