Hot Cross Buns – Origins

The Saxons worshiped Eostre, from which we get our word “Easter”, as the goddess of dawn and spring. At the arrival of spring they celebrated a month-long festival in celebration of the transition from Winter to Spring. During this festival the Saxons made buns to offer the goddess. They marked the buns with a simple cross, to represent the four phases of the moon…Hence the “hot cross buns” 🙂

920-hot-cross-bunsHere are some additional things that the four quarters of the cross could represent, depending on what matters most to you.

  • The four elements. Choose a quarter to represent each of the four elements of earth, air, fire and water.
  • The four directions. Many Pagan traditions place an emphasis on the directions of north, east, south and west.
  • The four phases of the moon. Select each quarter to symbolize the dark moon, the waxing moon, the full moon and the waning phase.
  • The four seasons. Each quadrant could be representative of spring, summer, fall, and winter.
  • The fire feasts or quarter festivals. The Fire Festivals, or cross quarter days, include Imbolc, Beltane, Lammas/Lughnasadh, and Samhain. The Quarter festivals, or lesser sabbats, include the solstices and equinoxes.
  • The four suits of the Tarot. Each section can symbolize Wands, Cups, Coins or Swords.
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