Published on March 30th, 2018 | by Jasmine Evans
Why Do We Eat Chocolate Eggs at Easter?
Here comes the Easter Bunny with all the Easter eggs your heart desires. This Easter on Sunday 1st April 2018, 80 million Easter eggs will be sold in the UK. But why do we associate the resurrection of Jesus Christ with chocolate?
Why do we have Easter eggs?
The egg is a potent symbol of life, renewal and rebirth. This idea was adopted by early Christians as a symbol for the resurrection of Jesus Christ on Easter Sunday. The hard shell of the egg is symbolic of the tomb, and the baby chick that emerges represents the resurrection of Jesus.
Historically, in the week running up to Easter, Christians were urged by the Church not to eat eggs as part of Holy Week. Since chickens would continue to lay eggs during this week, people would decorate them, save them for Easter and then exchange them as gifts.
However, in the 18th century, people started to get a little more creative with their Easter egg giving and this is where the idea behind the modern Easter egg surfaced. In the Victorian era, the Easter tradition was adapted to feature large satin-covered eggs filled with Gifts.
The first chocolate eggs appeared in Europe in the early 19th century. These eggs, which were received as a fun and child-friendly twist on an ancient religious ritual, were often hard and bitter. But as time went by, chocolatiers developed a sweeter and more mouldable chocolate which allowed for the first hollow chocolate eggs – resembling the ones that we eat today.
What is the Easter Bunny?
The story of the Easter Bunny is nowhere to be found in the Biblical scriptures, but is thought to have originated in the 19th century. Similarly to the egg, the bunny is symbolic of new life and fertility and marks the birth of spring.
Tradition has it that the Easter Bunny leaves eggs on Easter just like Santa does at Christmas. Parents then hide these eggs around the garden, before a fun-filled family game of Easter egg hunt commences. For more fun facts about the Easter Bunny, you can read more in our article The Life of the Easter Bunny.
Regardless of why you celebrate Easter, whether it’s for religious reasons or just because you love chocolate, we can all agree that Easter is a cracking time of the year.