‘Eggs have been associated with the Christian festival of Easter since the early days of the church. With the rise of Christianity in Western Europe, the church adapted many pagan customs and the egg, as a symbol of new life, came to represent the Resurrection.’ Well, thanks to the Cadbury’s website, this life-long mystery (for me at least) has finally been answered.
Although I won’t personally be stuffing my face with Easter eggs this weekend (I’m only venturing out of the house to briefly visit the local supermarket once a week for essentials, and I don’t regard chocolate eggs as a real ‘essential’), the form of an egg has always fascinated me as a near-perfect piece of engineering and ‘design’.
In its naturally form, an egg is aerodynamically superior and unfeasibly strong, failing to be damaged or even break when dropped from a great height (assuming it lands correctly, which in nature it invariably does not).
Engineers can (and have) learned a lot from the simplicity, wonder and slippery form of an egg for countless years. When Saab engineers invented and introduced the world’s first passenger safety cell in a motor car (the 1947 Ur-Saab and production 92), for example, they cited an egg as part of their inspiration.
Renowned vehicle aerodynamicists such as Austrian-born Paul Jaray (1889-1974, the ‘designer’ of streamlined Zeppelin airships and pre-war Tatra and other automotive prototypes), and French slippery sports car maker and Le Mans ‘Bugatti’ circuit designer, Charles Deutsch, also mentioned eggs in their studies to cleave through the air as efficiently as possible.
As a special Easter treat, here are half-a-dozen egg-shaped cars from history. Just be sure not to devour them all at once to avoid discomfort!