Hanukkah

History, Traditions, and Foods

What is Hanukkah?

Hanukkah is a holiday that is celebrated by Jewish to celebrate the Maccabees regaining the Temple of Jerusalem. It also commemorates the single oil candle that lasted for eight days, which is the miracle that is celebrated. It is celebrated on December 16 through the 24th, according to the Jewish calendar. To celebrate, we light the 9 candles on the menorah, eat special foods, and play games.

History

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The story of Hanukkah is not recorded in the Bible. It all started when Antiochus IV conquered Jerusalem. He killed many Jews, placed an unfair priest in the Temple, and prohibited the practice of Jewish religion. Two groups of Jews, Mattahias' group and the Chasidim, united and revolted against Antiochus. The two groups won the revolt and managed to repair the Temple. When they wanted to celebrate their accomplishment, the Maccabees learned they only had enough oil for one day. Yet, the single oil candle lasted for eight days, so it was declared an eight-day festival to celebrate this amazing miracle.

Traditions

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The classical traditions of Hanukkah are to light the menorah, sing songs, pass out gelt to young children, and other traditions that families have created. Each year, families invite relatives and close friends. Then they will eat classic Hanukkah food, play the dreidel game, give gifts (especially to the young children), and pass out gelt. Each of these traditions are to celebrate the Maccabees earning back the Temple Jerusalem and the oil candle that lasted eight days, which they consider a miracle.

Special Instruments

Special Foods

By: Chloe Ching