You won’t find them in the Bible, but many cherished Easter traditions have been around for centuries. The most prominent secular symbol of the Christian holiday, the Easter bunny reportedly was introduced to America by the German immigrants who brought over their stories of an egg-laying hare.
While Christians celebrate Easter Sunday as the day on which their Lord and Savior Jesus Christ rose from the dead for the salvation of those who believed in Him, the pagan and secular Easters are also significant to the Western celebrations. It is clear that much of the symbolism surrouding Easter is rooted in Pagan lore, and the rabbit we remember when we think of Easter is one of these cases.
There’s no story in the Bible about a long-eared, cotton-tailed creature known as the Easter Bunny. Neither is there a passage about young children painting eggs or hunting for baskets overflowing with scrumptious Easter goodies.
In legend, the Easter Bunny, also called the Easter Hare and the Spring Bunny, brings baskets filled with colored eggs, candy, and sometimes toys to the homes of children on the night before Easter, in much the same way as Santa Claus is said to deliver presents on Christmas Eve. The Easter Bunny will either put the baskets in a designated place or hide them somewhere in the house or garden for the children to find when they wake up in the morning, giving rise to the tradition of the Easter egg hunt.
The legend of the Easter Bunny bringing eggs appears to have been brought to the United States by settlers from southwestern Germany. The German tradition of the Easter Bunny or “Oschter Haws” migrated to America in the 1800s, likely accompanying German immigrants, many of whom settled in Pennsylvania. Over the past 200 years, the Easter Bunny has become the most commercially recognized symbol of Easter.
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