Eostre

March 23rd, 2008 by sabrina

Eostre (pronounced EES-tra) is the Anglo-Saxon Goddess of the dawn and spring. She was known in Germanic lands as Ostara, and is similar to the Greek Goddess Eos and the Roman Aurora. Eostre’s name gives us our modern words “East”, since that is the direction that dawn arises from, and “Easter”, since her festival occurred at the beginning of spring, the dawn of the year. Modern mythology gives Eostre the symbols of the egg and the hare, both symbols of fertility and new beginnings, but there is no solid evidence of this. One explanation may be that, as Christians reinvented Eostre’s festival into their own celebration, pagans are now taking the Christian symbols associated with Easter and reverse attributing them to Eostre.

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