Happy Easter

1 April

Why do we have Easter eggs?

A lot of us may chomp on chocolate eggs at Easter, but originally eating eggs was not allowed by church leaders during the week leading up to Easter (known as Holy Week). So any eggs laid that week were saved and decorated to make them Holy Week eggs, that were then given to children as gifts.  Victorians adapted the tradition with satin-covered cardboard eggs filled with Easter gifts.  This has now developed into the tradition that many people enjoy today.

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Why are Easter eggs made of chocolate?

Easter chocolate

The first chocolate eggs appeared in France and Germany in the 19th Century, but they were bitter and hard.  As chocolate-making techniques improved, hollow eggs like the ones we have today were developed.  They very quickly became popular and remain a favourite tradition with chocolate-lovers today.

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What’s the Easter Bunny then?

Rabbits sitting behind some Easter eggs

The story of the Easter Bunny is thought to have become common in the 19th Century. Rabbits usually give birth to a big litter of babies (called kittens), so they became a symbol of new life.  Legend has it that the Easter bunny lays, decorates and hides eggs as they are also a symbol of new life.

This is why some children might enjoy Easter egg hunts as part of the festival.  It doesn’t do all the work alone though!  In Switzerland, Easter eggs are delivered by a cuckoo and in parts of Germany by a fox.

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