Easter is the first holiday of spring and is welcomed with immense joy, splendor and gaiety. The holiday marks the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead and the reawakening of the earth after the long chilly winters towards spring. Easter in France is celebrated on the same level as in America. The country is regarded as the cradle of Christianity. Various ceremonies are performed to commemorate the rebirth of Jesus and cultural customs include rabbits, chocolates and eggs being used in different purposes.
The historic country of France celebrates Easter with a lot of enthusiasm and zeal. Known as P‚ques in French, Easter is one of the major festivals in the country. The deep-rooted belief in Christianity among the French citizens and the secularism practiced by the country allows the festivity to adopt enhanced gaiety. In France, Easter also marks the first holiday of the spring season. It not only celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ, but also the resurgence of the earth after a long cold winter.
The entire country basks in the festive spirit of Easter. Business goes sky high in malls, as every shop sees heavy rush for the upcoming celebration. There is a wide variety of dresses, decorative items and chocolate goodies, made especially for Easter that goes on display. One of the important aspects of the Easter celebrations in France is that the church bells remain silent from Good Friday until Easter Sunday, as a token of mourning for the crucified Christ. During this time, all over France, mothers narrate tales to their children, explaining the phrase - 'the bells have flown away to Rome'.
In France, it is said that the bells fly away to the Vatican City, on Good Friday, carrying away the desolation and distress of people who lament Christ's crucifixion, along with them. On Easter Sunday, the bells return, commemorating the resurrection of Jesus. The bells also bring lots of chocolates and eggs with them. Instead of the traditionally used bunny, French people use Easter fish called Poisson d'Avril, which signifies 'April Fish', as the Easter icon. In a kind of an extension of the April Fools Day, children stick a paper fish onto the back of as many adults as possible, on Easter.
Another old tradition followed in France, on Easter, is a contest of rolling eggs. In this ritual, raw eggs are rolled down a gentle slope. The egg that survives till the base of the slope becomes the victory egg. It symbolizes the stone that was rolled out from the tomb of Jesus Christ. Easter parades and carnivals explain the grandeur and opulence of this festive occasion in France. While the carnival takes place on Shrove Tuesday, a puppet is burned on the public square on Ash Wednesday. In Nice, a northern part of France, big parades of floats and a Battle of Flowers, on the avenue bordering the beach, are carried out on Easter.
In France, Easter celebrations adopt great grandeur and majesty. Go through the article, to know more on the festive spirit, during Easter.