Where does the Easter Bunny come from?

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The Easter Bunny is a character that, according to legend, brings children eggs, candy, money, or toys the night before Easter. While not associated with the Christian Easter Story in any way, the Easter Bunny has become as much a part of the Easter celebration as Santa Claus has for Christmas.

The first mentions of the Easter Bunny came in the form of German writings from the 1600's. When the Pennsylvania Dutch arrived in North America in the 1700's, they brought the legend of the Easter Bunny, which they called "Oschter Haws," with them. Tradition states that children would put out baskets or bonnets the night before Easter and, if they were good, they would be rewarded! Sometimes the Oschter Haws would place its gifts in the basket, but other times it would hide those gifts so the children would have to search for them in the morning. This tradition soon grew in popularity into the Easter Bunny that we know of today.


by   (whyzz writer)
  • Further information

    Rabbits and eggs are both considered symbols of rebirth and fertility, something associated with spring and the Easter season, but since when does a rabbit lay eggs?!? It turns out that "oschter haws," the phrase the legend of the Easter Bunny stems from, actually means "Easter hare," which is different from a rabbit “” rabbits raise their young underground in a "burrow," while hares create nest of grass called a "form."

    Some breeds of bird, especially those in the Lapwing family, also create nests on the ground, and the image of a rabbit carrying eggs most likely came from somebody stumbling onto a Lapwing nest and thinking it was a hare form!
  • Exploration

    The Easter Bunny isn't the only gift-giver during the Easter season! In parts of Europe, especially in France and Italy, the Easter Bell is said to go to see the Pope and bring back eggs and candy for the children. In Sweden and Finland, children dress up as the Easter Witch and leave secret notes for their neighbors in exchange for candy or coins. And in Australia, the Easter Bilby (a kind of marsupial) has replaced the Easter Bunny because it was thought that the endangered animal deserved more attention!
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