Why Do We Color Easter Eggs?

Posted by Marge on 04/01/2017 in History or Holidays |

Easter is a religious holiday, but some of its customs like the Easter egg are not really a religious symbol. The Egg is an ancient symbol of new life. This symbol is associated with festivals celebrating spring. Some Christians believe Easter eggs are a symbol representing Jesus’ rising from the tomb and his resurrection.

Decorating eggs for Easter is a tradition dating back to around the 13th century. It became a tradition because eggs, meat, and some other foods used to be a forbidden food during the Lenten season. People began painting and decorating eggs before Easter. On Easter they would eat the eggs, as a celebration marking the end of their penance and fasting.

Easter egg hunts and egg rolling also became popular egg-related traditions. The White House started holding an Easter Egg Roll. This was a race in which children pushed decorated, hard-boiled eggs across the White House lawn. The first official White House egg roll occurred in 1878. Rutherford B. Hayes was the president. It has become an annual event, which is held the Monday after Easter. Some people have considered egg rolling symbolic of the stone blocking Jesus’ tomb being rolled away, leading to his resurrection. However, the event has no religious significance. I do like the symbolism, though.

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