Easter is here! I imagine that for a lot of you, the thing that comes to mind when you think about this time of year is eating loads of chocolate. Well, believe it or not, there is much more to this festivity! This year, we want to share with you some interesting Easter words and expressions from three different languages.
1. Easter eggs
Over Easter, people give and receive Easter eggs. “Why eggs?” you might ask. It’s because they are thought to represent rebirth.
Most of the time they are made of chocolate but some people also decorate real hard-boiled eggs and artificial eggs made from plastic, filled with chocolate or sweets. Families sometimes organise an egg hunt, which is a game where parents hide decorated eggs or chocolate eggs for children to find.
2. Easter bunny
The Easter Bunny is a folkloric figure and symbol of Easter, thought to bring Easter eggs and presents to children. Some children leave out their baskets the night before Easter. The next morning, they wake up to find their baskets full of toys, sweets and chocolate thought to have been left by the Easter bunny. Yum!
1. Osterkorb – Easter basket
Like in other countries around the world, in Germany some people have egg hunts. Children go out into the garden to find Easter eggs and sometimes other little gifts like books or sweets. They might receive little baskets containing Easter sweets or empty ones that they can fill with the sweets they collect.
2. Osterbaum – Easter tree
In Germany, people often decorate small trees, bushes or even branches with eggs and toy bunnies, just like you would decorate a Christmas tree. The eggs can be real or artificial (sometimes wooden) and the family usually decorates them together before hanging them on the tree.
3. Ostermarkt – Easter market
We all know Germany loves its festive markets, so much so that in some towns and villages in Germany you can also find Easter markets! These start in March and continue well into April, and as you can imagine, they feature all sorts of eggs! You can also sample different food and drink, or buy Easter treats and handicrafts.
1. First person: “Христос воскрес!” – Christos voskres! (Christ has risen!)
Second person: “Воистину воскрес!” – Voistinu voskres! (Indeed he has!).
When greeting somebody on Easter day, rather than saying “Hello”, people say “Christ has risen!” to which someone else replies “Indeed he has!”. It’s even considered rude if you don’t greet someone this way when you go to their house for the Easter meal!
2. Крашенные яйца – Krasheniye yatsa – Dyed eggs
Dyed eggs are a typical part of Easter in Russia. People might just dye them different colours, or they might get more creative and paint them with flowers, animals or whatever they like! It’s tradition to eat a dyed egg at Easter as they represent the birth of a new life.
3. Освещать еду – Osveshat edu – To bless food
It’s tradition to bless your food on the eve of Easter. People take their dyed eggs, kulich (a typical Easter cake), sweets or even bread to be blessed by a priest. It’s believed that eating blessed food on Easter day will help to cleanse your sins. But to be honest, even if it is not blessed, the food is still delicious!