Many nations in the world still have a custom to use eggs on Easter celebration. But they were just krashanky (eggs uniformly painted in one colour with no patterns or designs). In Ukraine painting eggs has become the art which has absorbed artistic perfection, richness of patterns and designs, originality of colour spectrum.
Pysanka has become a cultural symbol of Ukraine. No wonder that in Canada Ukrainian immigrants have erected the monument to it. Pysanka (a painted egg) is the symbol of life. The greatest number of painted eggs is prepared during the Easter lent, but they were prepared to other holidays too — to the Pussy-Willow Week, the Lady Day, the Ascension Day.
Pysanka are blessed together with Easter blessed food and they are kept under the icons as the symbol till the next Easter, Easter Day is greeted by painted eggs. All the people beginning from the youngest to the oldest have a painted egg together with them on the first and second Easter Day and they go nowhere without it.
Painted eggs were not presented of the some colour to everyone. Children were given painted eggs of light colours, young boys and girls were given them with the sun and jolly colours, masters of the houses received painted eggs with forty wedges, and old people were given them in black colours and the so called “sky bridge”. The same painted eggs were carried to the tombs of parents and grandparents.
Pysanka is not only a beautifully decorated egg but it is a thing of worship, a symbol of generations which has it’s certain place in mythic-ritual system of Ukrainian people, thing which formed specific vision of the surrounding world, it’s perception and attitude towards it, the thing which formed the Ukrainian nation mentality and due to it become the symbol of it’s immortal and beautiful soul.
Krashanky — are boiled eggs painted in one colour: yellow, red, green, blue, violet. They were eaten at Easter and used for Easter entertainments.
Pysanky — are raw eggs with painted symbolic patterns in different colours.