Published on 31 March 2024 at 19:48

Easter in Spain is celebrated in a very different way to in the UK. The first main difference is in the name, Easter and Semana Santa, the Spanish allocate a whole week to it, as opposed to the UK’s long weekend. It is likely that the word Easter developed from the name of the pagan goddess of spring and fertility, Eostre and, although there is a Spanish word for Easter which is Pascua, a Spaniard is more likely to use the term holy week, Semana Santa.


Here in Antas the celebrations started the Friday before Easter, the 22nd, the Viernes de Dolores (The Friday of Sorrows), when the little children dressed up like their mothers and fathers, the boys in black trousers with white shirts, the girls in black lacy dresses, mantillas (the high lacy head decorations), make up and heeled shoes. They enact a version of the processions that will take place throughout the following week.


In the UK there are of course special religious services in the churches, but from my experience Easter is celebrated with joy because it is a long weekend off from work, and there is delicious food involved. Good Friday is a day for Hot Cross Buns and lamb is traditional on Sunday. Apart from that chocolate Easter Eggs and Bunnies and cakes (a traditional one being a Simnel Cake ) decorated with chicks are usual.


In the USA they go one further with the Easter Eggs and adults hide them, for the children to look for and find, either in their own garden, or some towns have a communal egg hunt. These eggs are not always chocolate as sometimes they are painted hard boiled eggs.


One thing that is common though in the UK and Spain is that it is a time for families to get together and celebrate in the manner of their traditions.


So, wherever you are I wish you a Very Happy Easter. If you have a different tradition for Easter, let me know, I would love to hear from you!

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