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the Jewish holiday of Passover and the Christian holiday of Easter.
In antiquity, nomadic Semitic tribes celebrated Pasch in connection with the spring calving. After the tribes made the transition to a settled way of life and to agriculture in the 13th and 12th centuries B.C., Pasch became an agrarian holiday marking the start of the harvest. The custom developed of preparing unleavened, flat cakes (matzoth) from the first harvested grain. As the cult of Jahweh grew, Pasch came to be celebrated in memory of the exodus of the Jews from Egypt. Later, Pasch was linked with the awaiting of the messiah. In Christianity, the celebration of Pasch took on new meaning and was linked with myths about the redeeming power of the sufferings of Christ and about his death and resurrection.
Originally, the Jewish and Christian Pasches coincided. However, in A.D. 325 an ecumenical council of the Christian church adopted a resolution that Easter be celebrated on the first Sunday one week after the Jewish Passover. This may be any date in the period from April 4 to May 8. Like other religious holidays, the celebration of Pasch is a means of exerting religious influence on the masses and strengthening religious ideology.