#Ostara, or #Eostre or #Eastre, is the Germanic #Goddess of spring and dawn. She is only mentioned once in scholarly writings of the period - Bede the monk states that during Eostremonath (the old Anglo-Saxon names for April), the #pagan Anglo-Saxons help #festivals in her honor. (Two hundred years later in Germany, in his Life of Charlemagne, a monk named Einhard gives the old name for April as Ostaramonath.) She is also mentioned in a number of inscriptions in Germany, and the modern holiday of Easter - originally the name for the #springEquinox, but later subsumed to the Paschal calendar for the Christian resurrection holiday - is named for her. The name "Eostre" (Old Germanic "Ostara"), is related to that of Eos, the #Greekgoddess of dawn, and both can be traced back to a Proto-Indo-European goddess of dawn.
Her material is so scant that some scholars have speculated that she was not a goddess at all, but simply an invention of Bede, but it is unlikely that someone as heathen-phobic as Bede would have gone about inventing goddesses; he seems to have preferred to keep all things pagan at arm's length. Some scholars have also decided, rather randomly and on scant information, that Ostara is a form of Freya. Others believe that she is actually Iduna, or Walburga. Some modern #Heathens and #NorsePagans have experienced personal gnosis of Ostara/Eostre being a #Vanicgoddess, or at least very close to the #Vanir, which is why we list her in this section ... but again, there is no evidence and Ostara's origins continue to remain a mystery.
Her true mystery, however, is evident every year. She is the first warm spring winds, the birds that return, the trees that bud and curl forth leaves and flowers. She is the awakening earth, rabbits and hares, the eggs that appear after a winter of no light. City folk may not know that chickens who are kept in natural lighting quit laying in the winter, when the days are short, and begin again as the days lengthen. March/April is their peak time of year, and those eggs were a valued and welcome protein source for our winter-starved ancestors. Ostara's legacy is all those colored eggs which many of us still hang on t