Easter


Easter
Easter O.E. Easterdæg, from Eastre (Northumbrian Eostre), from P.Gmc. *Austron, a goddess of fertility and spring, probably originally of sunrise whose feast was celebrated at the spring equinox, from *austra-, from PIE *aus- "to shine" (especially of the dawn). Bede says Anglo-Saxon Christians adopted her name and many of the celebratory practices for their Mass of Christ's resurrection. Ultimately related to EAST (Cf. east). Almost all neighboring languages use a variant of Latin Pasche to name this holiday. Easter egg attested by 1825, earlier pace egg (1610s). Easter bunny attested by 1904 in children's lessons; Easter rabbit is by 1888; the paganish customs of Easter seem to have grown popular c. 1900; before that they were limited to German immigrants.
If the children have no garden, they make nests in the wood-shed, barn, or house. They gather colored flowers for the rabbit to eat, that it may lay colored eggs. If there be a garden, the eggs are hidden singly in the green grass, box-wood, or elsewhere. On Easter Sunday morning they whistle for the rabbit, and the children imagine that they see him jump the fence. After church, on Easter Sunday morning, they hunt the eggs, and in the afternoon the boys go out in the meadows and crack eggs or play with them like marbles. Or sometimes children are invited to a neighbor's to hunt eggs. [Phebe Earle Gibbons, "Pennsylvania Dutch," Philadelphia 1882]

Etymology dictionary. 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Easter — • Includes information on the feast and customs Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Easter     Easter     † …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Easter — Eas ter ([=e]s t[ e]r), n. [AS. e[ a]ster, e[ a]stran, paschal feast, Easter; akin to G. ostern; fr. AS. E[ a]stre, a goddess of light or spring, in honor of whom a festival was celebrated in April; whence this month was called in AS. E[ a]sterm[ …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Easter — (engl. Ostern) ist ein englischer Familienname. Bekannte Namensträger Allison Easter, Sängerin David Easter, Musiker Jamal Easter (*1987), britischer Fußballspieler (Wales) Jermaine Easter (*1982), britischer Fußballspieler (Wales) Kenneth… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Easter — Студийный альбом Patti Smith Group Дата выпуска 3 марта, 1978 год Записан Recor …   Википедия

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  • Easter — (also Easter Day or Easter Sunday) ► NOUN ▪ the festival of the Christian Church celebrating the resurrection of Christ, held (in the Western Church) on the first Sunday after the first full moon following the northern spring equinox. ORIGIN Old… …   English terms dictionary

  • Easter — [ēs′tər] n. [ME ester < OE eastre, pl. eastron, spring, Easter; orig., name of pagan vernal festival almost coincident in date with paschal festival of the church < Eastre, dawn goddess < PGmc * Austro (> Ger Ostern) < IE base *… …   English World dictionary

  • Easter — East er, v. i. (Naut.) To veer to the east; said of the wind. Russell. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Easter — (Myth.), so v.w. Eostra …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon


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