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How Is the Easter Bunny Associated with Easter?

Although Easter is a religious holiday on which Christians commemorate the resurrection of Jesus Christ, it also is associated with the Easter Bunny as a result of the combination of pagan and Christian traditions. Pagans historically had springtime festivals celebrating fertility after winter. The rabbit and the egg were traditionally featured as symbols of fertility during the festivals. The first recorded instance of the Easter Bunny and Easter eggs was in Germany during the 1400s. The association of a bunny that delivers decorated eggs and candy expanded to the United States by the 1800s after Germans immigrated to the US.

More about Easter:

  • Each Easter holiday, more than 16 billion jelly beans are sold in the US — enough to fill an egg 89 feet (27.13 m) tall and 60 feet (18.29 m) wide.

  • German children traditionally would leave out handmade nests for the Easter Bunny to fill with candy and eggs. The nests eventually were replaced by colorful baskets.

  • The word "Easter" is thought to be derived from Eostre, the pagan goddess of fertility. Legend states that she cast Lepus the Hare into the heavens and made the animal able to lay eggs yearly.

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More Info: history.com

Discuss this Article

ysmina
Post 3

I've read that the Easter Bunny was a symbol of the Goddess Eostre who was the goddess of fertility in ancient Europe. Rabbits were her life form on earth. Later Eostre changed to Easter.

literally45
Post 2

@turkay1-- I'm Catholic and my church has never had a problem with Easter activities. We all know that these were practices before Christianity, but it was absorbed by the Church because new Christians wanted to continue their traditions and holidays. I think that's okay because the Easter Bunny doesn't hold the same meaning it did before Christianity.

I know that some parents teach their kids that Easter is a secular celebration and nothing to do with Christianity. It's a personal preference what people want to tell their children. But for most people, Easter and the Easter Bunny are harmless practices. It's mostly for kids to have fun anyway.

candyquilt
Post 1

I'm not a Christian so I'm not overly familiar with Easter practices. I've grown up eating Easter candy but I've never been to an Easter celebration.

I'm curious, how do different Christian churches view the Easter Bunny practice? I would think that some traditionalists would argue against it since it has Pagan origins. Am I wrong?

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