The story behind the moving date, eggs and bunnies of Easter

Kids all over Snohomish County will dash through parks, fields and lawns today searching every nook and cranny for Easter eggs and chocolate bunnies.

But have you ever stopped to wonder why that is?

1. The holiday

Easter, a Christian holiday, celebrates the belief that Jesus Christ was resurrected from the dead after he was crucified by the Romans in roughly 30 A.D. The Bible says that Jesus’ death and resurrection happened around the time of the Jewish Passover, which was celebrated on the first full moon after the first day of spring.

This led to Christians celebrating Easter on different dates. The earliest possible Easter Sunday is March 22 and the latest is April 25.

2. The eggs

Eggs symbolize new life, fertility and rebirth in many cultures around the world. They’re a nod to Jesus’ resurrection or rebirth on Easter. Egg rolling, a game where children push an egg through the grass with a spoon, symbolizes the rolling away of the stone from Jesus’ tomb.

Eggs were traditionally dyed red to represent Jesus’ blood, but most today are decorated in bright, pastel colors to symbolize the coming of warmer and lighter days ahead.

Filling plastic eggs with candy is a modern addition to the celebration.

3. The bunny

The Bible does not mention rabbits, yet Easter bunnies are a prominent symbol of the holiday. Its origins are unclear, but the leading theory is it originated in the 1700s with German immigrants, who believed in an egg-laying hare called Oschter Haws, settling in Pennsylvania.

Today, the Easter Bunny delivers candy-filled plastic eggs in baskets.

— Evan Thompson, Herald writer

Talk to us

More in Life

Local artist Gabrielle Abbott with her mural "Grateful Steward" at South Lynnwood Park on Wednesday, April 21, 2021 in Lynnwood, Wash. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Lynnwood mural celebrates the Earth and those who care for it

Artist Gabriella Abbott will discuss “Grateful Steward,” her mural at South Lynnwood Park, in a virtual event April 22.

Peter Rivera and his band will perform April 24 at the Historic Everett Theatre. Rivera was the lead singer for 1970s hitmakers Rare Earth. (www.peterrivera.com)
With Everett gig, Peter Rivera celebrates another day of living

The Rare Earth lead singer and drummer headlines a show Saturday at the Historic Everett Theatre.

Take Earth Day quiz to find out how to protect the planet

Waste Management shares some ideas to help you reduce your impact on the environment.

Photo by Kira Erickson/South Whidbey Record
Ron Rois, left, and his partner, Stefen Bosworth, are transplants from the Chicago area with roots in the Pacific Northwest. They are the owners of Langley's newest restaurant, Savory.
New Whidbey Island restaurant serves ‘eclectic comfort food’

Owners Stefen Bosworth and Ron Rois offer cozy dining overlooking Saratoga Passage.

The beer is flowing again at Snohomish County breweries as COVID-19 restrictions ease. (Kevin Clark / Herald file)
Drink This: Raise a pint to breweries that survived COVID-19

The Herald’s beer aficionado enjoyed a beer crawl from Everett’s At Large Brewing to 5 Rights in Marysville.

Shrimp scampi -- paired with an islandtini -- is a best seller at The Kitchen at the new Quil Ceda Creek Casino. (Quil Ceda Creek Casino)
Taste of Tulalip: Pair shrimp scampi with an islandtini

The Italian-American seafood dish is a best seller at The Kitchen at the new Quil Ceda Creek Casino.

Fattoush is a chopped Levantine salad made with stale pita. This includes shredded chicken tossed in a citrusy tahini-sumac dressing. (Gretchen McKay/Post-Gazette/TNS)
Eat This: Fattoush with chicken and tahini-sumac dressing

The Mediterranean salad is made with chopped lettuce, cucumbers, radishes and fried or baked pita bread.

When Transient Global Amnesia strikes, the past three months become hard to remember. (Jennifer Bardsley)
The Friday I forgot is one to remember

A sudden — thankfully, temporary — episode of memory loss gave me an opportunity to reflect.

John D. Osterman at 98 years old. (Jeanne-Marie Osterman)
An Everett native pays a poetic tribute to her father

“Shellback” is a collection of narrative poems honoring John D. Osterman, a lifelong Everett resident and WWII veteran.

Most Read