The Chemistry of Dyeing Easter Eggs
People have been dyeing fabrics and other items for many years. In fact, the earliest written record of the use of dye is from thousands of years ago in 2600 BC! In 715 BC, Romans were already dyeing wool. People have used many different substances to dye fabrics and other materials, including a purple dye made from a sea snail called a murex. This dye was expensive and purple became the color of emperors and kings.
Dyeing Easter eggs is also a very old tradition. In the Ukraine, coloring eggs with wax and dye is called pysanky, and it has likely been practiced since ancient times.
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