Writing Pysanky



Why were pysanky written?

Pysanky were written for different reasons at different times. In pre-modern times, they were written for talismanic reasons: 

  1. to insure the return of the sun and of spring

  2. to insure fertility of the fields and livestock

  3. for protection from various dangers – from fire and other catastrophes, and from the various devils and demons that might be about

The most common symbols on traditional pysanky are sun symbols, but we also find representations of the old gods.  Some have compared pysanky to written prayers.

In more modern times, pysanky are written for commercial reasons (to sell) or, more commonly, simply for their pure beauty. In the words of Keats

                                A thing of beauty is a joy for ever:

                                        Its loveliness increases; it will never

                                        Pass into nothingness

And, as Emerson more succinctly noted, “Beauty is its own excuse for being.”

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