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The Greek term for Easter, pascha , has nothing in common with the verb paschein , "to suffer," although by the later symbolic writers it was connected with it; it is the Aramaic form of the Hebrew pesach ( transitus , passover ).The Greeks called Easter the pascha anastasimon ; Good Friday the pascha staurosimon.L., LXXII, 47-51), since already in the third century 25 March was considered the day of the Crucifixion (Computus Pseudocyprianus, ed. The Montanists in Asia Minor kept Easter on the Sunday after 6 April (Schmid, Osterfestberechnung in der abendlandischen Kirche).The First Council of Nicaea (325) decreed that the Roman practice should be observed throughout the Church.But for such a feast it was necessary to know the exact calendar date of Christ's death.To know this day was very simple for the Jews ; it was the day after the 14th of the first month, the 15th of Nisan of their calendar. had used the reformed Julian calendar; there were also the Egyptian and the Syro-Macedonian calendar.At Antioch Easter was kept on the Sunday after the Jewish Passover.(See EASTER CONTROVERSY.) In Gaul a number of bishops, wishing to escape the difficulties of the paschal computation, seem to have assigned Easter to a fixed date of the Roman calendar, celebrating the death of Christ on 25 March, His Resurrection on 27 March (Marinus Dumiensis in P. Many calendars in the Middle Ages contain these same dates (25 March, 27 March) for purely historical, not liturgical, reasons (Grotenfend, Zeitrechnung, II, 46, 60, 72, 106, 110, etc.).
In the Roman and Monastic Breviaries the feast bears the title Dominica Resurrectionis ; in the Mozarbic Breviary, In Lætatione Diei Pasch Resurrectionis; in the Ambrosian Breviary, In Die Sancto Paschæ .But even at Rome the Easter term was changed repeatedly.Those who continued to keep Easter with the Jews were called Quartodecimans (14 Nisan) and were excluded from the Church.Every fourth year of the Jewish system had an intercalary month.Since this month was inserted, not according to some scientific method or some definite rule, but arbitrarily, by command of the Sanhedrin, a distant Jewish date can never with certainty be transposed into the corresponding Julian or Gregorian date (Ideler, Chronologie, I, 570 sq.).