Pysanky, also known as Ukrainian Easter Eggs, are decorated by a technique that dates back to prehistory. The name comes from the word "pysaty" (to write), as the designs are said to be written, not drawn or painted. Beeswax and natural dyes were used in pre-christian times to create eggs that were not only beautiful, but had strong talismanic properties. Pysanky were not thought of as art, but as objects with magical protective powers. The symbols and colors were not mere decorations, but prayers to the gods. There has been a resurgence of interest in recent times in this ancient craft, and many modern artists have begun to practice it.