It's all too obvious when Easter is approaching when stores begin lining their shelves with the typical trappings of the holiday: fluffy bunnies, plastic eggs, egg coloring kits, and row after row of chocolate treats resembling chicks, eggs and rabbits. Most of us equate Easter with big baskets brimming with these colorful sweets and, of course, hardboiled decorated eggs, however, this tradition is relatively recent compared to the true origins of the Easter egg. The egg has long been a symbol of continuing life and resurrection among many religions and sects. As far back as the Middle Ages, eggs were colored for Easter celebrations.
The legendary Faberge eggs of Imperial Russia follow the ancient traditions more so than act as predecessors to current practices. In the Russian Orthodox faith eggs are elaborately decorated and given as gifts at Easter. The most celebrated are the Faberge eggs, which were commissioned by Czar Alexander III in 1884. The czar's wife so liked the eggs that their yearly commission became a ritual, with each containing a much anticipated "surprise." The czar's son, Nicholas II, continued the tradition and eggs were created to commemorate numerous historical events. These eggs are so valuable because of the elaborate techniques and intricate detail Faberge used in their fabrication.
Fortunately, the Faberge legacy didn't fade into oblivion. Today, collections of jewelry and objects d'art, including egg items for every season, are overseen by the superior guidance of Faberge workmaster Victor Mayer.
For LxM Amy Covington