Whether you enjoy chocolate eggs or paint a boiled egg for breakfast, we love to eat eggs during Easter. But why do we do that?
You weren’t allowed to eat eggs until Easter Sunday
The chocolate egg is a variation of regular Easter eggs. Giving, coloring, and painting eggs at Easter is an age-old tradition. Long ago, during Lent between Ash Wednesday and Easter, no meat or eggs were allowed. That’s why people painted the eggs laid at that time. And on Easter Sunday, eggs were finally allowed to be eaten again.
The chocolate egg is an 18th-century invention
The chocolate egg was invented in the 18th century as a luxury variant of these eggs by Parisian confectioners. Initially, they made the chocolate in the mold of a real egg. Some bakers and chocolatiers competed to see who could make the prettiest egg. As a result, the chocolate eggs became more and more eccentric. Now it is just a custom that we eat a lot of chocolate eggs around Easter.
Eggs are a symbol of fertility
There are still a lot of theories going around about the meaning of eggs. In many (pre-Christian) religions eggs were already a symbol of fertility and of new life (the same applies to the (Easter) bunny). The egg can also symbolize the resurrection of Christ.
The Christian Easter is said to have been mixed with older spring customs. Eggs may have been sacrificed to the goddess Ostara. But much is also unclear about the mixing of the Christian Easter and earlier pagan customs. It seems that the English ( Eastern ) and German ( Ostern ) names for Easter come from the Germanic goddess of spring Ostara.