Everything you ever needed to know about Easter Eggs
Its almost Easter and whilst I rub my hands with glee in anticipation of a good ol chocolate-fest, it made me realise that I have absolutely no idea why we give Easter eggs and where the tradition comes from. With my Sherlock hat on and magnifying glass at the ready, I unearthed lots of interesting and quirky facts about Easter eggs that I never even knew and wanted to share them with you:
The history of the Easter Egg
Although Easter is a religious holiday, the custom of giving Easter eggs, are likely linked to pagan traditions.The egg is an ancient symbol of new life and has been associated with pagan festivals celebrating Spring. From a Christian perspective, Easter eggs are said to represent Jesus’ emergence from the tomb and resurrection. Decorating eggs for Easter is a tradition that dates back to at least the 13th century, according to some sources. One explanation for this custom is that eggs were formerly a forbidden food during the Lenten season, so people would paint and decorate them to mark the end of the period of penance and fasting, then eat them on Easter as a celebration.
Easter Egg Painting
|The infamous crocodile effect Easter egg||Medieval Easter Eggs||Cadbury's Creme Egg|
Fun Easter Egg Facts
1. Every child in the UK receives an average of 8.8 Easter eggs every year – double their recommended calorie intake for a whole week
2. 80 million chocolate Easter eggs are sold each year. This accounts for 10% of Britain’s annual spending on chocolate!
3. The world’s most popular egg-shaped chocolate is Cadbury’s Creme Egg. Workers at Cadburys in Bournville produce 1.5 million of these every day
4.Medieval Easter eggs were boiled with onions to give them a golden sheen. Edward i however, went one better and in 1290 he ordered 450 eggs to be covered in gold leaf and given as Easter gifts
5. In medieval times, a festival of egg throwing was held in church. The priest would throw a hardboiled egg to one of the choirboys and it would then be tossed from one boy to another. Whoever held the egg when the clock struck 12 was the winner.
6. The famous ‘crocodile’ finish that you see on Easter eggs came from Germany and was originally designed to cover up any minor imperfections in the chocolate.
7. Papier-mache Easter eggs started being produced in England in the 18th century and then the first chocolate eggs appeared in the 19th century with the earliest ones being completely solid
8. The first chocolate Easter egg was produced in 1873 by Fry's.
9. The traditional name for Easter egg decorating is Pysanka. The word comes from the verb pysaty that means “to write”
10. America reportedly produces 91.4 billion chocolate Easter eggs each and every year, as well as 90 million chocolate bunnies. Unlike Britain, who leave chocolate eggs empty or fill with other chocolate treats, most Easter Eggs in America are filled with jelly beans – and it is thought 16 million jelly beans are consumed by Americans each year.
So there you have it - everything you ever needed to know about Easter Eggs