Hanukkah, also known as the Festival of Lights, is a Jewish holiday celebrated over an eight-day period each year by millions of people around the world. Each Hanukkah, the same question is asked: What Date Is Hanukkah This Year? This article will provide all the necessary information that you need to know to make sure you don’t miss out on celebrating the holiday.
In 2021, Hanukkah will begin in the evening of Thursday, December 10 and extend through the evening of Friday, December 18. The first day of Hanukkah is known as Kabbalat Hanukkah and starts the eight nights of ritual candle lighting.
The History of Hanukkah
According to Judaism, Hanukkah commemorates a victory of the Jews over the Assyrian-Greeks in 165 B.C.. The victory was celebrated with a special 8-day temple service of praise and thanksgiving.
When is Candle Lighting?
On the first night of Hanukkah, a single light is lit on a nine-branched candelabrum known as a Hanukkiah or Menorah. Each night thereafter, the number of lit candles increases by one until all nine candles are lit in unison. Family members take turns lighting the Hanukkiah from the existing flames on each night of the festival.
The Menorah and Its Symbology
The eight lights of the menorah represent the special “miracle of Hanukkah.” During the Syrian-Greek occupation of Israel, the victorious Jews found only enough oil to light the menorah in the Temple for a single day. However, the oil ultimately lasted for a full eight days, just enough time to acquire new oil for the Hanukkiah.
Though the festival is celebrated for eight days, modern-day commemoration of Hanukkah centers around lighting the menorah. Religious and secular customs vary by region, but the traditional Hanukkah songs and recipes, gifts of money for children, and the exchange of Hanukkah cards and greetings are always part of the celebration. This year, Hanukkah will begin on the evening of Thursday, December 10th and extend through the evening of Friday, December 18th.
No matter where you are and how you celebrate, the Festival of Lights is always a time of joy, peace, and discovery. Enjoy the holiday and may you and your family be filled with light and celebration.
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Last update 2023-11-27. Price and product availability may change.