Apr 3, 2015

Easter Eggs

Decorated eggs predate Easter and have been found as early as 60,000 years ago. About 3000 BC in Persia, eggs were dyed red given as gifts in celebration of the first day of spring.

The practice of giving red Easter eggs, symbolizing the blood of Christ, became a Christian tradition, with the hatching of an egg symbolizing the resurrection. The Easter egg is also a byproduct of Lent, as many families would give up eggs during those fast days, which ended with Easter.

Some of the oldest egg dyes were made from a variety of materials, including onion peels, tree bark, flower petals, and vegetable and fruit juices.

Cadbury sells over 200 million cream eggs each year in the UK. More than three for each person who lives there.

The PAAS Dye Co. launched its product during the 1880s. The first packets contained five colors for 5 cents. The company now claims to sell more than 10 million kits annually including dyes, paints, stickers, glitter, etc.

In some European countries, children go from house to house to collect eggs.

The White House Easter Egg Roll, an annual tradition on the Monday after Easter, is the only time that tourists are allowed to gather on the White House lawn. The tradition actually started on the lawn of the Capitol, by Dolly Madison during the early 1800s, and was moved to the White House in 1878, when Rutherford B. Hayes was president.

Many Easter eggs are formed from chocolate. In Scotland, a popular treat sold in fish-and-chips shops is deep-fried chocolate eggs.

The most valuable Easter eggs are the jewel-encrusted Fabergé eggs, crafted in the late 1800s and early 1900s as Easter gifts for the families of Russian czars. Only 65 were known to have been made. Most are worth millions of dollars.

The world's largest Easter egg, as recognized by Guinness World Records, was made of chocolate in 2005 in Belgium and weighed 1,200 kilograms or more than 2,600 pounds.

The term for intentional inside joke, hidden message, author's names, or feature in a work such as a computer program, video game, movie, book, or crossword is Easter Egg. The term was coined at Atari after a programmer put his name in a hidden room in the game Adventure, released in 1979. The name evokes an Easter egg hunt.

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