Hanukkah is an important Jewish celebration that is celebrated for eight days and begins on the 25th day of the Jewish month of Kislev. This usually falls sometime between November and December and is celebrated with the kindling of the lights of a nine-branched menorah. The festival is also characterized by food, songs and gift giving. So when is the first day of Hanukkah?
When is the First Day of Hanukkah?
The exact date of the first day of Hanukkah changes every year because the Jewish calendar is a lunisolar calendar, meaning that it follows both the motion of the moon, and the position of the sun. Hanukkah always begins on the 25th day of the Jewish month Kislev and ends on the 2nd or 3rd of Tevet.
In the Gregorian calendar, Hanukkah usually begins in either late November or early December. This year, for example, Hanukkah began on December 22, 2020 and ended on December 30, 2020. This is based on the Jewish calendar with the first day of Kislev.
In 2021, Hanukkah will start on December 10, 2021 and end on December 18, 2021. Hanukkah is observed from the 25th day of Kislev until the 3rd day of Tevet. The holiday will end on the 10th day of Tevet in 2021.
What is the Meaning of Hanukkah?
The holiday of Hanukkah honors the miracle that occurred, when there was only enough oil found to burn for one day in the Menorah in the Holy Temple but it miraculously burned for eight days. It lasts for 8 nights and each night we light the Menorah (Hanukkiah) and remind ourselves of that miracle.
Hanukkah is marked by eating oily food such as:
- Latkes, which are potato pancakes fried in oil
- Sufganiot, which are jelly donuts fried in oil
- Hanukkah Gelt, which consist of chocolate coins wrapped in gold or silver foil
The holiday is also celebrated with games like Dreidel, a 4-sided spinning top with Hebrew letters on each side. The letters stand for the phrase, “A Great Miracle Happened Here” in Hebrew.
In conclusion, the first day of Hanukkah is celebrated on the 25th day of Kislev during the Jewish month, which usually falls in late November or early December. The celebration is marked by lighting a menorah, eating oily foods, playing the game of Dreidel and giving gifts. Hanukkah celebrates the miracle of the lamps in the temple and the 8 days of oil that miraculously last for 8 nights.
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Last update 2023-11-22. Price and product availability may change.