Easter is celebrated by Christians throughout the world in remembrance of the day when Jesus resurrected from dead, three days after being crucified on the cross. This year, Easter will be celebrated on April 1. Easter takes place on a Sunday and marks the end of the 40-day period called Lent. Lent is referred to as a time of one month long fasting and repentance. The participants focus more on giving up one significant indulgence. The day symbolises for Christians that they have a new beginning through Christ and that their sins have been forgiven. Holy week is celebrated during the week leading up to Easter. It begins on Palm Sunday followed by Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and then finally, Easter Sunday.
There are some interesting facts associated with the celebration of Easter. We have listed down some of those facts to help better understand why Easter marks an important day for Christians around the world.
Facts About Easter
Easter is celebrated on different date each year
Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday after the first full moon that occurs on or after the vernal equinox or the first day of the astronomical spring. If the full moon falls on a Sunday, Easter is delayed for one week.
White House holds the annual egg roll tradition
President Rutherford B. Hayes hosted the first egg roll on the South Lawn of the White House in 1878. Since then, it has become an annual tradition for families and children and only changed the location during World War I and II.
The legend behind Easter Bunny
The Easter Bunny began as a legend from Germany that spoke of a woman who would leave decorated eggs hidden throughout the village for children to find during times of famine. Once they found the eggs, they would look up to see a large bunny hopping away from the scene.
Eggs were thrown during medieval times
During Medieval church services, the priest would toss a hard-boiled egg to one of the church choirboys sometime before noon. The choirboy would toss it to someone else and so on. The egg would be tossed as many times as possible. In the end, when the clock struck 12 in the afternoon and whoever had the egg was the winner. They would also get to keep the egg.
Egg symbolises life
Giving eggs is a tradition that dates back even farther than Easter. Throughout history and in many cultures, eggs have been a popular gift. The egg symbolises life and symbol of fertility, and springtime is considered to bring new life and rebirth. Eggs are also tied to Easter because of the legend Ishtar, who hatched from an egg in the Euphrates river. During Lent, the consumption of animal products, including eggs, was not allowed. This led to a surplus of eggs by the time Easter came. This makes it another reason why eggs are embraced for the holiday.
The white lily is the official flower of Easter. As they represent grace and purity, many churches and homes are decorated with the white lily for the holiday. They are best known as ‘Easter lilies’.
The traditional act of painting eggs is called Pysanka. There has been a debate about the practice of dyeing chicks. Many hatcheries no longer participate but some say that it isn’t dangerous to chick’s health because the dye only lasts until the chicks shed their fluff and grow their features. Egg dyes were once made of natural items such as onion peels, tree bark, flower petals and juices. Members of the Greek Orthodox faith often painted the Easter eggs red that symbolises Jesus’ blood and his victory over death. The colour red is symbolic of the renewal of life as Christ’s resurrection.
The origin of the word Easter isn’t certain and has many theories associated with it. According to the eight-century monk and scholar Bede, the word may have come from the Anglo-Saxon Eeostre or Eastre, goddess of spring and fertility. However, recent scholars haven’t been able to find any reference of the goddess. As Easter is in the offing, these facts about the day will help you understand better about the celebration.