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of the Passover; and which was for that reason generally received in the evening of the day; or as others think from that new commandment, which he gave them to love one another, after he had washed their feet, in token of the love he bore to them, as is recorded in the second lesson at morning prayer." Others, again, will have nothing to do with mandate, or mandatum, but derive it from the French maundier, " to beg," while some maintain with Junius and Spelman, that the word is derived from the mande, or basket, from which the alms were distributed. But notwithstanding such high authorities, I am inclined to believe with those, who derive the word from mandatum; for on inquiring into its etymology, we must look at the custom, in which it is supposed to have originated, not as the custom is, but as it was. In olden times, when kings used to wash the feet of beggars, the words uttered by Christ and his apostles were sung for an antiphon, "mandatum novum do vobis," &c.;* a new commandment I give unto you—and what is more probable than that the whole ceremony should take its name from so prominent a feature? Indeed charity may be said to be the peculiar feature of the day, no doubt because it was now that Christ more particularly enjoined the practice of it to his disciples. Hence it was the custom in all Roman Catholic countries, for the people, dressed in their best, to visit several churches at this season, saying a short prayer in each, and giving alms to the numerous beggars that were in waiting.
Good Friday.—The Friday before Easter Sunday. It was also called by the Saxons Long Friday, perhaps from the long fasts and offices used by them at that time, for there appears no other reason. The epithet of good it is said to have obtained because the good work of man's redemption was then consummated, and on account of the benefits thence derived to us.
The hot cross-buns, that are in such common use amongst all classes, have by some been derived from the eulogia, or consecrated loaves of the Greek Church, though one would suppose that this was the very last quarter to which the Latins would have gone for any custom. The buns, marked
* St. John, chap. xiii. ver. 34.
with the cross, were, I should imagine, but a sort of laysacrament, and eaten as much in commemoration of our Saviour as the consecrated bread itself, being manifestly no more than another form of the bread that was at one time given in alms to people at the churches. Bishop Bonner tells us, "that the gevyng of holy bread is to put us in remembrance of unitie, and that all Christen people be one mysticall body of Christ, like as the bread is made of many grains and yet but one loafe, and that the sayd holy bread is to put us also in remembrance of the housell (sacrament), and the receyvyng of the moste blessed body and blood of our Saviour Jesu Christ."
As to the word bun, it is likely enough to be a corruption of boun, the original name for sacrificial cakes.
Cecrops, one of the kings of Greece, about sixteen centuries before the Christian era, is said to have first offered up to the Divinity the sacred cross-bread, called a bun (Greek fiovv), from the representation upon it of the two horns of an ox, which was made of fine flour and honey. The prophet Jeremiah, who flourished about 600 years B.C., notices this kind of offering, when he speaks of the Jewish women at Pathros in Egypt, and of their base idolatry,— the cakes, which they offered up to the moon, the queen of heaven.
This cake, or bun, is therefore a species of bread, which originally used to be offered to the gods; and it was usually purchased by the worshippers at the entrance of the temple, and taken in by them, and eaten at the feast of the remaining parts of the sacrifice; to which St. Paul alludes in 1 Cor. x. 28.
It is a remarkable fact, that at Herculaneum were found two small loaves of about five inches in diameter, marked with a cross, within which were four other lines; and the bread of the Greeks we are told, was marked in this manner from the earliest periods. Sometimes it had only four lines altogether, and then it was called quadra. This bread had rarely any other mark than a cross, which was on purpose to divide and break it more easily. Similar loaves were discovered in a bake-house at Pompeii. These towns were overwhelmed and destroyed by the volcanic eruption of Mount Vesuvius, A. D. 79.
HOT CEOSS-BUNS AND EASTEE EGGS. 183
In the course of time we find the Christian Church using cakes or buns, such as we have already referred to, and consecrating them; these were bestowed in the church as alms, and likewise to those who, from any impediment, could not receive the host, or consecrated wafer, at the usual time of the celebration of the Lord's Supper. These buns were made from the dough from which the host itself was taken; they were given by the priest to the people after mass, just before the congregation was dismissed, and kissed before they were eaten. They were also marked with the cross, just as our present Good Friday buns are. This bun is the most popular symbol of the Roman Catholic religion in England that the Eeformation has left to us.
Hot cross-buns have the usual form of buns; but they are inwardly distinguished from other buns by having a sweeter taste, and the flavour of allspice; and outwardly they are known by the mark of the cross, which, as our readers know, has been greatly insisted on in Papal worship and devotion, from the days of Constantine the Great, in the early part of the fourth century, to the present hour.
"We see, therefore, that the bun of the ancient Greeks, crossed, to represent the horns of the ox which was sacrificed, and also for the purpose of more readily breaking it, was adopted by the Christians and used as the only food on the day of the Crucifixion, because it possessed, ready at hand, a symbol of that solemn event.
Many superstitions are connected with this species of bun. In some of the counties of England great care is taken to preserve some of these cakes or buns, which being grated after they are dry, are esteemed by the credulous as infallible cures for many diseases.
In the houses of some ignorant people a Good Friday bun is still kept "for luck;" and sometimes there hangs from the ceiling a hard biscuit-like cake of open cross-work, baked on a Good Friday, to remain there till displaced on the next Good Friday by one of similar make:—this is also supposed to preserve the house from fire.
Old Lady Bay. Easter Eggs.—The custom of making presents of eggs on particular occasions is of great antiquity. In Koman Catholic countries the custom prevails at Easter, where the allusiou was evidently meant to be to the Resurrection. In process of time, although the custom still continued, its origin was lost sight of, and a present of eggs, no longer considered as a sacred memorial, became first a sign of friendship, and afterwards a token of affection from one young person to another.
"An Easter egg, the which is sawed open with a fine instrument made for that purpose; the shells within are cleaned and dried, then lined with gilded paper, and adorned with figures of saints, made of silk and gold; they are made to open and shut, and are tied together with ribbons. Eggs of this sort are made for presents to ladies of quality. Two eggs of this description were presented on Easter-day, 1716, to the beautiful young Lady Manfroni, of a very ancient family, by Seignior Bernini, who soon after married her. In Venice, the Venetian noblemen present eggs to the ladies and nuns, adorned with their portraits curiously limned thereon; and in Germany they have ways of adorning eggs with foliage and other devices, all in transparent work, which is cut out with aquafortis."
"Eggs after the usage of Bome, painted of various colours, and adorned with figures and emblems. These on Easter-day are carried to church to the parish priests, who bless them and sprinkle them with holy water. On that day, at dinner, the cloth is adorned with sweet herbs and flowers, and the first thing that is eaten are these blessed eggs, which are painted by the nuns of Amelia, a small city about thirty miles from Home. The common sort of these eggs are all of one colour, as yellow, blue, red, or purple, which are sold in the streets till Ascension-day, or Whitsuntide. Anno 1716."
Ornamented Easter eggs were not only considered as offerings of friendship, but chargers filled with eggs having been presented at the church on Easter eve, and duly consecrated, according to the form prescribed in the ritual of Pope Pius the Fifth, a sacred character was imparted to the gift which greatly enhanced its value.
Respecting this custom, (which is prevalent in France at the present day,) we have heard an anecdote related of an honest English traveller, who, unacquainted with the arti
ficial process of colouring these eggs, and seeing many exhibited in the streets of Paris of a deep purple colour, exclaimed with the utmost astonishment, "What colour must their hens be?"
At the present day some remains of this custom are to be found in the north of England, some few of the adepts even taking the pains to saw the shells in half; but the greatest number are distributed whole among the younger branches of the family by their grandmothers and aunts, who provide according to their means against the occasion.
In Cheshire, children go round the village and beg for "an egg, bacon, cheese or an apple, or any good thing to make us merry," and ending with "and I pray you, good dame, an Easter egg." In Cumberland and Westmoreland the same custom prevails, and pask or paste eggs are reciprocally sent from one friend to another. The mode of preparing the eggs is by plunging them in hot water for a few minutes, and then writing a name or drawing an ornament on the shell with tallow; the egg is then boiled in water containing any coloured dye in solution; this colour will not attach itself to the shell in any part which has been covered with grease, and consequently all the ornaments will appear white. Another method, which requires more skill and labour, is to stain the egg of an uniform colour, and scratch out the ornament or name by means of a penknife.
The Easter eggs, which are stained of an uniform colour, afford amusement to the children in a sort of game, in which the strength of the egg-shell is tested. The boy, holding an egg in his hand, challenges a companion to give blow for blow; one of the eggs is sure to be broken, and its shattered remains are the spoil of the conqueror, whose egg assumes a consequence in proportion to the number of times it has escaped unbroken. To obtain an egg, which, when boiled, shall be as hard as possible, the boys are in the habit of watching the hen when she lays, taking the egg immediately from under her, and boiling it at once; by this means the white of the egg becomes harder than if it were boiled at a future time.
JEaster Eve used to have, in the old Konian Catholic times, a variety of ceremonies that have long since been