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НазваHappy Easter (реферат)
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РозділІноземна мова, реферати англійською, німецькою
ФорматWord Doc
Тип документуРеферат
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HAPPY EASTER

 

Easter, annual festival commemorating the resurrection of Jesus Christ,

and the principal feast of the Christian year. It is celebrated on a

Sunday on varying dates between March 22 and April 25 and is therefore

called a movable feast. The dates of several other ecclesiastical

festivals, extending over a period between Septuagesima Sunday (the

ninth Sunday before Easter) and the first Sunday of Advent, are fixed in

relation to the date of Easter.

 

Connected with the observance of Easter are the 40-day penitential

season of Lent, beginning on Ash Wednesday and concluding at midnight on

Holy Saturday, the day before Easter Sunday; Holy Week, commencing on

Palm Sunday, including Good Friday, the day of the crucifixion, and

terminating with Holy Saturday; and the Octave of Easter, extending from

Easter Sunday through the following Sunday. During the Octave of Easter

in early Christian times, the newly baptized wore white garments, white

being the liturgical color of Easter and signifying light, purity, and

joy.

 

PRE-CHRISTIAN TRADITION

 

Easter, a Christian festival, embodies many pre-Christian traditions.

The origin of its name is unknown. Scholars, however, accepting the

derivation proposed by the 8th-century English scholar St. Bede, believe

it probably comes from Eastre, the Anglo-Saxon name of a Teutonic

goddess of spring and fertility, to whom was dedicated a month

corresponding to April. Her festival was celebrated on the day of the

vernal equinox; traditions associated with the festival survive in the

Easter rabbit, a symbol of fertility, and in colored easter eggs,

originally painted with bright colors to represent the sunlight of

spring, and used in Easter-egg rolling contests or given as gifts.

 

Such festivals, and the stories and legends that explain their origin,

were common in ancient religions. A Greek legend tells of the return of

Persephone, daughter of Demeter, goddess of the earth, from the

underworld to the light of day; her return symbolized to the ancient

Greeks the resurrection of life in the spring after the desolation of

winter. Many ancient peoples shared similar legends. The Phrygians

believed that their omnipotent deity went to sleep at the time of the

winter solstice, and they performed ceremonies with music and dancing at

the spring equinox to awaken him. The Christian festival of Easter

probably embodies a number of converging traditions; most scholars

emphasize the original relation of Easter to the Jewish festival of

Passover, or Pesach, from which is derived Pasch, another name for

Easter. The early Christians, many of whom were of Jewish origin, were

brought up in the Hebrew tradition and regarded Easter as a new feature

of the Passover festival, a commemoration of the advent of the Messiah

as foretold by the prophets.

 

THE DATING OF EASTER

 

According to the New Testament, Christ was crucified on the eve of

Passover and shortly afterward rose from the dead. In consequence, the

Easter festival commemorated Christ's resurrection. In time, a serious

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