Updated on: Monday, November 29, 2021, 03:03 PM IST

Hanukkah 2021: Significance, history and all you need to know about the other festival of lights

Hanukkah is an eight-day celebration that begins on the 25th day of Kislev according to the Hebrew calendar.

Hanukkah is a Jewish festival that is celebrated to mark the recovery of Jerusalem and subsequent rededication of the of the Second Temple at the beginning of the Maccabean Revolt against the Seleucid Empire in the 2nd century BCE

People across the world are celebrating the much-loved Jewish holiday Hanukkah, which began Sunday, 28 November and will go on to Monday, 6 December

What is Hanukkah?

Hanukkah, based on the Hebrew word for "dedication", is also known as the Festival of Lights. It is celebrated across the world by Jewish people for eight days, with many considering it the most-beloved Jewish holiday. The festival marks the recovery of Jerusalem and the re-dedication of the Second Temple in Jerusalem.

The eight-day festival is celebrated in the United States as well and is a recognized holiday at the White House. The President of the United States celebrates Hanukkah by hosting annual Menorah lightings and parties.


Hanukkah is not mentioned in the Torah, unlike other Jewish holidays. The first five books of the Hebrew Bible are included in the Torah. The festival’s story is mentioned is in the post-biblical Books of the Maccabees.

The festival of lights commemorates the victory of the Maccabees, a small army of Jewish people which fought against the army of King Antiochus IV of Syria.

The festival is marked by lighting one candle on the menorah (multi-branched candelabra) on each night of the festival. A new candle is put in the menorah every night


Celebrations this year:

The date of Hanukkah is determined by the 25th day of the Jewish month of Kislev. This year, Hanukkah celebration started on 28 November and will culminate on Monday, 6 December.

The date of the celebration is based on the lunar cycle. The first day of the festival of light can befall anywhere from late November to December on the Gregorian calendar as per the Jewish calendar.


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Published on: Monday, November 29, 2021, 03:03 PM IST