Photographer's Note

Easter traditions - painted easter eggs

One of the most beautiful Romanian Easter traditions are painted eggs with bright colours in geometrical patterns or stylized figures, animal and floral designs.

Painted eggs are also traditional for Eastern Europe, from Romania, Moldova, Ukraine, to Lithuania. It started long time ago as a pagan ritual. Christianity adopted this pagan tradition and Easter eggs have become an indelible feature of the feast commemorating the Resurrection of Christ.

The shells of hard-boiled eggs are dyed in colourful patterns, often decorated with folk motifs. Designs are made with an implement called a condei or chisita - a small cartridge filled with paint with a sharp point on the end. There are a myriad of motifs used on painted eggs. The most popular ones are the cross, the star, the sun, the wave, the zigzags, and stylised flowers. Sometimes motifs are applied using natural leaves.

Traditionally, it's the women who paint Easter eggs, and they have to do it on the Thursday before Easter. Women are not supposed to do any work on Friday. Sunday Easter morning the painted eggs are tapped together with the words "Hristos a Inviat - Adevarat a Inviat" - ("Christ is Risen - He is Risen indeed"). This beautiful ritual precedes the Easter breakfast. For fourty days people, especially in the countryside, greet each other with these words.
( ... read more here)

* i don't know which region this egg belongs to, i didn't paint it myself, i got it as a gift 2 years ago ... of course it's just an empty shell :)

** in the western part of the country, where i live, on Easter Monday men and boys are supposed to visit women's and girl's houses and water them (like you water flowers) with perfume (used to be buckets full of water long time ago) so they will stay beautiful all year long until next Easter. To show their gratitude women offer them traditional cake (cozonaci), drinks or candies to little boys and painted eggs.


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Additional Photos by teodora vlaicu (thea0211) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 688 W: 10 N: 323] (1365)
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