Spring 1912

What did the Abrafaxe actually do a hundred years ago?

Cover illustrations for MOSAIK issue 438

While you’re enjoying MOSAIK issue 437, we’re working on the next adventure. The June issue still needs a nice cover. What do you think?

Happy Easter

Easter is the most important Christian feast. We celebrate the resurrection of Jesus Christ. But where do our traditions actually come from, why is the egg our center of attention and how did the Easter bunny get his job?

The Holy Week before Easter starts with Palm Sunday. By the way, the Easter date always depends on the moon: The weekend after the first full moon in springtime (thus after the 21st of March) is Easter. On Good Friday, when Jesus was crucified, the Christians mourn and fast (strictly religious people already start fasting on Ash Wednesday, which is 40 days before Easter). The day of Jesus’ entombment is commemorated on Holy Saturday. On Easter Day, we celebrate the resurrection of Jesus. The Paschal candle, symbolizing Jesus Christ, is lit at the fire.

However, Easter is not only a Christian celebration, many pagan traditions have contributed to this springtime feast. The Easter fire represents the sun as the primal fire which created all life. The fire should also assure a good harvest.

The egg hunt might be traced back to a pagan tradition as well: the Ostara feast. People gave each other decorated eggs for welcoming the spring. The clergymen disliked that idea and proscribed it. However, the heathens did not abandon their custom, instead, they secretly gave the eggs away by dropping them occasionally on the fields. The receivers thus had to search for the presents, and the egg hunt was born. Apparently, the Christians liked the idea, which is why the tradition was eventually adopted.

Why the egg? Many explanations exist. The egg is a symbol of fertility and it also represents life and resurrection, which is why people added it to tombs in the past. As early as in the ancient world, people decorated temples with eggs during springtime since they were regarded as origin of the world. During the Middle Ages, eggs were used as payment instrument: on Maundy Thursday, the peasants paid their rent with them. Another pragmatic reason is to keep the quality of boiled eggs. During Lent, the consumption of eggs is forbidden. People boiled them so that the eggs could not rot and were still edible weeks later, namely at Easter.

So, what about the Easter bunny? Even the Bible made the rabbit a symbol. Since the 17th century, it has been linked to Easter eggs. Again, the origin is not quite clear, but there are several plausible reasons. With a reproduction rate of about 20 kits a year, the rabbit is associated with fertility, a fact that made it a symbol of several deities, such as the Germanic goddess Ostara. The Easter bunny has thus probably evolved from different traditions and became really popular in the 20th century. Since then, each year small and big chocolate Easter bunnies have been greeting us from the shop windows.

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Klein, drollig und voller Charme [...] Mosaik ist ein Stück Leben.

Mitteldeutsche Zeitung

Angesichts der Omnipräsenz der elektronischen Medien in Kinderzimmern ist die Comiczeitschrift „MOSAIK“ ein liebenswerter Anachronismus. Und ein erfolgreicher dazu.“

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Zeichnerisch weiterhin auf höchstem Niveau, ist das Heft ein gelungener Start für die Serie.

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