European rabbit kit greeting its parent, France
© Remy Courseaux/Minden Picture
Who created the Easter Bunny?
German Lutherans in the 16th century first came up with the idea of the 'Easter hare,' which eventually formed the basis for the modern-day Easter Bunny. The German version of the bunny judges whether children have been good or bad during the Eastertide season—well-behaved kids get a treat. But rabbits and hares have long been associated with springtime, rebirth, and fertility, so perhaps it was inevitable that the fuzzy bunny would make the leap from gentle backyard visitor to keeper of spring's 'naughty or nice' list.