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Sorb community maintain egg-painting Easter tradition

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(18 Apr 2019) LEADIN:At an indoor Easter market in the East Germany village of Neuwiese, members of the local Sorb community are continuing the long tradition of hand painting eggs. Young and old come together before Easter, passing on their traditions and techniques to the next generation.  STORYLINE: A small ethnic Slavic group in East Germany is keeping alive the long and intricate tradition of hand-painting Easter eggs.About two dozen egg painters are attending this Easter market in the small village of Neuwiese. They're selling their handcrafted goods.Werner Zaroba, who's been decorating eggs since the age of nine, learnt this craft from his grandparents. "Over Easter, mostly on Good Friday, eggs were cooked for the godparents," he recalls."In those days, everybody had godparents and they receive three to five eggs for Easter, and through this process developed the tradition of egg painting."Traditionally, the eggs were dipped into a bath of colour. Fine tools would then be used to etch different patterns on the eggs.A normal-sized egg can take between four to seven hours to decorate. An ostrich egg? One that size can take up to twenty hours.At his market stall, Zaroba sells eggs featuring an array of different designs, prices range from four to 18 euros ($5-20 USD).Many participating in the festivities are dressed in traditional Sorb costumes.If you find yourself hungry, there's also some traditional sweets being dealt out - Sorbian bread and salt cake.Traditional Sorbian music echoes among the market stalls.13-year-old Emilia Kasper has been coming to this Easter market with her family since she was juts five-years-old. "I find generally the Sorb costumes and all things Sorbian very beautiful, and it's important to maintain this," she says."I think decorative eggs are good as a present because often one does not know what to give others as a present over Easter."First, an egg's yolk is removed before the decorating can begin.There are plenty of colours to choose from, like this red paint being heated by candle. Typically, patterns reflect the area where the artist is from.In Neuwiese, blue zigzag designs or motifs are a common feature."(There are) different designs, the wolf teeth, for example," explains Emilia's mother Christina Kasper."This zigzag design motif is meant to represent protection or the sun wheel, there are different motifs that have some meaning historically."The Sorb tradition of hand decorating eggs dates back generations. Nowadays, people tend to create their own designs."We did this too as children, painting eggs, except it was a wax bathing or dipping technique which differs to how it's done nowadays," says Christina Kasper."The technique now is somewhat easier so that the children can continue and that they can paint the motifs themselves and pass onto others. "Now it has become a beautiful tradition to experience every year during the Easter period."Easter is one of the most important and oldest celebrations in Christianity, celebrating the resurrection of Christ."It is itself a symbol of life, to which the Easter egg, itself belongs to the religious festival Easter - the rebirth, the resurrection of Jesus," explains Christina Kasper.Like others, Emilia hopes to share her beautifully-decorated creations with her family and friends over the Easter period.Find out more about AP Archive: http://www.aparchive.com/HowWeWork Twitter: https://twitter.com/AP_Archive Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/APArchives Google+: https://plus.google.com/b/10201102858... Tumblr: https://aparchives.tumblr.com/​​ Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/APNews/ You can license this story through AP Archive: http://www.aparchive.com/metadata/you...

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AP Archive 4206489 2ec1396d076116e2adaa49d026dd1eb6 HZ Germany Easter Eggs Lifestyle Arts and entertainment Business
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