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Astro*Dictionary by Michael Erlewine





1 article for "Easter"

Easter [DeVore]

From Eastre, the Anglo-Saxon goddess of light or Spring, in whose honor a festival was celebrated, usually in April — since at that time the Spring Equinox occurred in April. A Festival marking the commencement of Spring has been celebrated among many peoples under a variety of names. By the Christians it was celebrated in commemoration of the resurrection of Jesus. It coincides in general with the Jewish Passover, or Pasch, which the Jews celebrate on that 14th day of a lunar month that falls upon or next follows after the vernal equinox. After some schism over the point, the council of Nicea in 325 A.D., ordained that Easter should take place on the Sunday that immediately follows the full moon that happens upon, or the first full moon after, the day of the vernal equinox; except that if this falls on Sunday, or if Easter and the Passover coincide, then Easter is deferred one week. The reconciling of three such unrelated factors as the week, the lunar month and the solar year is sometimes a complicated matter. The full moon as calculated by the ecclesiastical rule does not always coincide with the astronomical full moon. These rules are based upon the golden number, epact, and Dominical letter (q.v.).

See also: ♦ Lunar ♦ Lunar Month ♦ Dionysian Period ♦ Epact


Astro*Index Copyright © 1997 Michael Erlewine