Hot Cross Buns

Traditionally eaten on Good Friday (though Tesco sell 70 million so I suspect they are eaten on other days too), Hot Cross Buns were eaten by the Saxons to honour Eostre, the goddess of dawn and fertility.  For the Saxons the cross symbolized the four quarters of the moon.

It is said that Christians turned Eostre to Easter marking of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ and the cross came to stand for the crucifixion.


Easter Eggs

Long before the time of Jesus Christ cultures such as the Greeks and Egyptians saw eggs as a sign of fertility and new life.  People would search for eggs in the spring and missionaries started using eggs as a tool to tell the story of Christianity and Christ’s birth and resurrection.  They would paint scenes from the bible and hide them.  The child that found the egg would relay the bible story painted on it.

The chocolate egg dates back to the 1800s when artificial eggs were made as gifts at Easter across Europe. The earliest chocolate eggs were made of bitter dark chocolate and the first hollow eggs were made by John Cadbury in 1875.  It was not until the launch of Cadbury’s Milk Chocolate in 1905 that the popularity of the chocolate Easter Egg really took off.


Easter Bunny

The Easter Bunny is said to have evolved from ancient fertility and spring celebrations.  In the spring the fields became over run with baby rabbits so it became a symbol of that time.  Although the link to Eostre would suggest that it was in fact a hare.  German Lutherans took the idea of an egg laying rabbit called Osterhase to America and the tradition continued to grow there.


No matter your Easter traditions why not come to Shire Hall over the Easter holidays and count chickens and take part in some Easter crafts.