Symbols and Characteristics of Easter
Apr 14, 2017
Since ancient times, Easter has been observed as one of the most long-expected and sacred holidays. Though its celebration is considered to be tightly connected with missioners spreading the traditions of observance of Christ’s Resurrection, the feast of Eostre existed in a far pre-Christianity era. The pagans were commemorating the goodness of spring Easter at the beginning of this season of the year, which coincided with commemorating Christ’s Resurrection by Christians. Gradually, two different holidays assimilated and were celebrated as one, called Easter, with its unique traditions and symbols.
To emphasize victory of life over death, faith over disbelief, fertility, and purity, people started to use various symbols associated with the mentioned notions.
Read More About Easter Symbols
The all-pervading symbol of different festivals is the cross. During Easter holiday, it is used to mourn for Christ’s death on Good Friday and to glorify the Jesus’ resurrection. On the Easter Sunday, the cross is decorated with Easter flowers, which are lilies, and bright strips of different colors.
The icon, which symbolizes the purity, beauty, and innocence, is the Easter lily. According to the legend, lilies were the flowers which grew at the places where the sweat of Jesus in his hours of sorrow had fallen.
Another vivid symbol of Easter is the butterfly, whose stages of life remind us Christ’s path as a human. The first cycle, when a butterfly is a caterpillar, is associated with the life of Jesus; the cocoon cycle is compared with the crucifixion of the Christ; while the final stage, when the cocoon becomes a butterfly, represents Christ’s Resurrection.
In countries of central and eastern Europe, Eastern lamb, from the religious point, personifies Jesus, and His death is related to the sacrifice of the lamb on the first Passover. In the Bible, Jesus is mentioned as “the Lamb of God”.
Easter Bunny and Eggs
The images that have recently become especially popular are the Eater Bunny or Hare bringing colored eggs, nowadays toys and candies, in baskets. Those symbols were brought to the premises of the USA by Germans in the 1770s and got accustomed and preserved till now. Hares, as well as eggs, symbolize the beginning of new life.
There are other Easter symbols that are widely used during the celebrations, such as the candle – light of the world, baby animals – new life and spring, palm branches – symbol of hospitality, the empty tomb – faith and hope for everlasting life. Easter icons do not end on the represented list of symbols and may differ depending on the country and its specific traditions. Broaden your knowledge and observe Easter holiday according to the traditions with us!