Legendary Rabbits

I love rabbits.  Who doesn’t love rabbits?  They’re incredibly cute with their long, floppy ears, and small, puffy tails.  Rabbits are popular all around the world, especially in folklore.

In Asian folklore, a white rabbit is said to live on the moon, pounding something in a mortar and pestle.  In the Chinese version, the rabbit is portrayed as a companion to the Moon Goddess Chang’e and is charged with creating the elixir of life for her.  But in the Japanese version, the rabbit is busy pounding mochi instead.  A reference to the moon rabbit was also made before the crew of the Apollo 11 made the first moon landing in 1969.  

The Easter Bunny is another good example of how revered rabbits are in European culture.  In Germany, the Easter Bunny first made an appearance around 1682.  It took on a Santa Claus-like role by judging whether children were good or bad around Easter.  On Easter, this rabbit would go around town carrying a basketful of colorful eggs, candies, and toys.  It would then hand these out to children that it deemed were well behaved.

Amazingly, there are 60 different breeds of domesticated rabbits in Europe and North America.  The European rabbit evolved around 4000 years ago and has played many roles all around the world.  It is viewed as a symbol of fertility, a pet, meat, a source of fur for fur coats and accessories, magical, and godlike.

 

Vocabulary:

  • Floppy 耳の垂れた
  • Folklore 民間伝承
  • Mortar and pestle すり鉢とすりこぎ
  • Elixir 不老不死薬
  • Rever 崇敬[崇拝・尊敬]する
  • Deem ~と考える
  • Well behaved おとなしい
  • Domesticated 家畜化された
  • Evolved 進化した
  • Fertility 肥沃

~ Samantha

摂津市 吹田市 茨木市 で英会話を学ぶならサンライズ英会話!!