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What Is So Egg-Citing About Easter?

Macey Keefer, Staff

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With Spring right around the corner, everyone is excited to celebrate the hoppiest day that falls in April this year: Easter. With Easter comes the activities that everyone loves including dyeing eggs, Easter egg hunts, and lots of candy.

Easter originated as a Pagan festival to celebrate spring in countries north of the equator. In the Greek mythology, the goddess of earth, Demeter, grieves during the six months that her daughter Persephone, goddess of spring, is in the underworld causing nothing to grow. According to ABC News, the Spring Equinox marks the point where she returns and plants are revived from winter hibernation.

The spring equinox is a day where the amount of dark and the amount of daylight is identical,” said University of Sydney Professor, Carole Cusack in an article by ABC News.  “ You can tell that you’re emerging from winter because the daylight and the dark have come back into balance.”

After the advent of Christianity in the early first century, the Easter season became linked to the Christian celebration of the resurrection of Christ. The theme of Easter was a festival to celebrate new life and rising from the cold dark winter, which connected to the Christian belief that Christ rose from the grave.

Other influences on the Easter season include the Saxon (Germanic) Goddess, Eostre. According to famous American Lexicographer ( a compiler of dictionaries) Robert Barnhart, in Saxon culture, Eostre is the goddess of fertility, which coincides with the new life that the spring season brings. Also, Eostre’s symbols include eggs and rabbits, popular emblems in commercial Easter today.

With the rising popularity of Easter, in the early 19th century, a big push for commercialism of the Easter season was seen. “Card companies like Hallmark became big by launching images of cute little rabbits and Easter eggs on cards,”  said Dr. Cusack in the ABC News article. This and the other incorporations of past traditions and religious influences led to the Easter festivities and poster symbols that we see today.

Easter is celebrated in many different ways and for many different reasons. For Jae-Lin Carmack (12) Easter is a time to enjoy family activities. “My mom puts together an Easter “Eggstravaganza” for our close family, it’s basically a big scavenger hunt around Mercersburg, Chambersburg, and St.thomas,”  said Carmack.

“We go find hints that lead you to different places and we eventually end up all back at one spot, which is my house, for Easter dinner,” said Carmack.

Food is another thing many families include as a large part of their Easter celebrations. When asked what her family includes for their Easter meal Lauren Fleming (12) explained, “ Our family usually has a big Easter Dinner, We all get together and have a bunch of different foods but the main course is pork and sauerkraut; it’s a tradition.”

Whether it is enjoying egg hunts and Easter baskets with your family, celebrating religiously, or just by taking in the warmer weather, Easter is an enjoyable day beloved by many.

 

 

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What Is So Egg-Citing About Easter?