This image of three hares each of which has two ears, but the motif has only three ears in total has a long history. The earliest known version appears in caves in China, thought to be from early 6th century. The design likely travelled along the Silk Road, arriving in southern Russia, Iran, eastern Europe, Germany, France, Switzerland, and finally in England and Wales around the early 14th century. This hare image has religious significance in many traditions: Buddhism, Islam, Judaism and Christianity. Symbolically, hares represent resurrection and immortality in Chinese mythology, as the hare held the cup of immortality for the moon goddess, Chang’e. In the pagan belief system, the generative hare was associated with the Anglo-Saxon moon goddess Oestara (or Eostre), who lends her name to the female cycle (oestrus) and the principal female hormone (oestrogen). Oestara also provided the name for the Wiccan holiday of Ostara, which celebrates the spring equinox, signifying new beginnings. And, you guessed it, Easter is a late derivative of her name. Hares are most visible in spring when they do their mating dances, and the hare was believed to have laid the Cosmic Egg, which may be the precursor of the idea of the Easter Bunny, and Easter eggs. Once the three hares reached Europe, they become a symbol of the Christian Trinity, and they appear in many churches particularly in Devon, England. This beautiful design is symmetrical and reminiscent of the moon, which is why I have painted these three hares on a round canvas. The hares in my painting are surrounded by flowers, recalling their affinity with spring.