So many of us celebrate the Easter Holiday but with little understanding of some of the elements around the holiday that is one of the most important to Christians in the calendar year. I have tried to put together a few interesting facts about the holiday and hope you find them both entertaining and educating as well. More on what the Easter holiday is and why Christians celebrate the holiday is covered in this article: Easter: Why Do Christians Celebrate It?
- What Is Easter? Easter is the celebration of the resurrection of Christ three days after his death. It is the oldest Christian holiday and the most important day of the church year. Christians consider Easter eggs to symbolize joy and celebration, new life and resurrection.
- Origin of the Easter Bunny: Most of the research suggests that the Easter Bunny’s origins may be from Anglo-Saxon paganism. It’s believed to have originated from Germany during the middle-ages. Stemming from Ostara, the German goddess of springtime, the German’s “Oschter Haws” laid a nest of colored eggs as gifts for good children.
- Why The Easter Bunny Lays Eggs: During the middle-ages, rabbit and chicken eggs were both considered symbols of rebirth and fertility – true signs of spring.
- The Bunny’s Chocolate Form: Evidently, both the Easter Bunny’s mythical origin and chocolate origin began in the same region. While chocolate bunnies were produced in Germany beginning in the 19th century, they didn’t go hollow until World War II when a cocoa bean rationing was in force.
- Australia’s Easter Bilby: In Australia a rabbit is a European immigrant species that has over-populated and out-worn its welcome. The bilby is an endangered native Australian species that Australians have now adopted as their national symbol of Easter. The Easter Bilby is responsible for bringing the children Easter treats and you can even buy a chocolate Easter Bilby in Australia. Other countries also have their own versions of the Easter Bunny: In most of France, children believe that flying church bells travel to the Vatican and bring back chocolate treats in time for Easter Sunday. In Sweden, kids dress up as wizards and witches rather than bunnies. And in Switzerland, the Easter Cuckoo (bird) is a symbol of the spring holiday.
- Biggest Candy Holiday: Based on limited research and much observation, I would argue that Easter is traditionally the largest candy consuming holiday in Zimbabwe. More candy is bought and consumed on Easter than on Valentine’s day or the Christmas holiday. So how many Easter eggs and chocolate Easter bunnies have you had this Easter?
- Easter Games: In medieval times, a festival of ‘egg-throwing’ was held in church. The priest would throw a hard-boiled egg to one of the choir boys, and then tossed from one choir boy to the next. When the clock struck 12, whoever held the egg, was the winner and got to keep the egg. I was relieved that they didn’t throw the bunny… kkkkkk
- The white lily, the symbol of the resurrection, is the special Easter flower. (This is not really an Easter Bunny fact but I found it interesting – who knew?)
- Eating Habits: Are you an ears, arms or tail person? Seventy-six percent of people eat the ears on the chocolate bunny first, 5 percent go for the feet and 4 percent for the tail. Which part of the chocolate bunny do you eat first? Tell me in the comments…
- The Easter Pangolin: You are probably thinking “What?”. I hope as Zimbabweans, we will start our own Easter Tradition around our endangered and unique Pangolin species. Easter Pangolin can be a big thing… Who doesn’t like Pangolins? This would be fun and also raise awareness to the endangered Pangolin. So let’s lobby the government, churches and all people of Zimbabwe to adopt the Easter Pangolin starting in 2018. I can tell you that at ZimShoppingMalls, beginning in 2018, we will be celebrating the Easter Pangolin because it’s the right move for us in Zimbabwe.
I hope you have enjoyed the few Easter Bunny facts above especially the idea of replacing the Easter Bunny with the Easter Pangolin in Zimbabwe.
What Easter Bunny facts have you heard? Share them in the comments section below…
University of Zimbabwe graduate, Honors in Sociology. Former model, TV Presenter and MC. Blogger, lover of food and all things artsy. I am loving my role in Social Media Marketing in Zimbabwe and educating clients on the ecommerce ecosystem era. Wife to one, mother to two and friend to many 🙂