Easter eggs

Easter eggs

Coloured and decorated Easter eggs have been present as part of national Easter customs in Slovenia since the 16th century. Originally, chicken eggs, which symbolised fertility and a new life, were coloured. In the 18th century, however, other ways of decoration began to take root.

The colour was once obtained from natural dyes. The most commonly used red colour was obtained from Pernambuco wood or brazilwood. Barberry roots and saffron turned the eggs yellow; alder and cherry bark gave them a greyish red look; and alder and oak bark coloured the eggs black. Most often, the eggs were dyed in onion peels, which gave them a dark yellow or red colour.

To further decorate the eggs, the people of the Soča Region commonly used the batik technique. They drew the desired pattern using a "pogelca", a small stick that had the pointed tip of a rooster feather attached at the end. They dipped it into melted wax, drawing various floral and geometric patterns and hearts on the eggs. Some people also added a short verse, a Christogram or the word "alleluia".

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Tolmin museum, permanent exhibition

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