Apr. 7th, 2017

shewhomust: (bibendum)
This is trivial, because I'm about ready for some trivia. As is the entire nation, apparently. We're tired of Brexit and the horrors of war, we want to get steamed up about chocolate eggs. And fortunately the Archbishop of York is ready to oblige.

The National Trust is celebrating Easter by holding egg hunts at a number of their properties, with the help of Cadbury's, and some bright mischief maker reporter persuaded John Sentamu that the publicity ("Join the Cadbury Egg Hunts this Easter") did not state sufficiently prominently that the hunt was for Easter eggs, and thereby diminished the role of Christianity in the festival, and the nation at large. John Sentamu to the rescue! The archbishop of York said that it was tantamount to "spitting on the grave" of John Cadbury, the Quaker founder of the firm.

Where to begin to unpack this?

With the obvious, I suppose: Easter eggs have about as much to do with Christianity as - as Easter itself, actually. Do we need to tell the Archbishop that his spring festival is deeply pagan at heart, and that pinning it to the Jewish Passover cannot hide that?

Jeremy Corbyn came closer to the real point: "It upsets me because I don't think Cadbury should take over the name of Easter," he said. But his objection was simply to the commercialisation of the festival: mine is specifically to the confectionery aspect. Speaking as a type 2 diabetic, in a nation with a serious sugar eddiction, does everything have to be about chocolate? The Easter tradition in this part of the world was 'pace egging', the competitive rolling of hard-boiled eggs down a convenient hillside (they knew how to enjoy themselves in those days...).

What was tantamount to spitting on the grave of John Cadbury, though, was the hostile takeover of Cadbury's by Kraft Foods, and the subsequent debasement of the creme egg. But perhaps the Archbishop missed this news; York is the home of rival confectioner Rowntree.

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