Easter Monday is a Christian holiday celebrated the day after Easter Sunday. Formerly, it was celebrated as Easter Week in many places, but was reduced to a one day celebration in the 19th century. It is an official holiday in many countries, plus North Carolina in the USA. Easter (also called Pascha) is generally accounted the most important holiday of the Christian year, observed in March or April each year to celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus from the dead after his death by crucifixion (see Good Friday), which Christians believe happened at about this time of year, almost two thousand years ago. (Easter can also refer to the season of the church year, lasting for nearly two months, which follows this holiday and ends around Pentecost) The name Easter is derived from 'Ostara' or 'Eostre', a pagan goddess of fertility, whose feast was celebrated on the Vernal Equinox. The word East is also derived from her names, as is Oestrogen, the female hormone.
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