The holiday season is coming up, which means Hanukkah will be here before you know it. Since Hanukkah falls on a different date each year, make sure to mark your calendars now so you can start planning for loads of fun festivities and games that you will get to do with the family.
The eight-day celebration, also known as “The Festival of Lights,” commemorates the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem and is celebrated in so many special ways each year. One of the many ways to celebrate is with delicious food! Nothing is better than making homemade potato latkes or beef brisket during the holidays season. And don’t forget about the gifts for Hanukkah!
So before you start decorating the house with loads of blue and white, make sure you have the date right. Below, we have outlined when Hanukkah falls on the 2021 calendar and why the holiday date changes each year.
When is Hanukkah in 2021?
This year, Hanukkah will start on the evening of Sunday, November 28, 2021. It will end on the evening of Monday, December 6, 2021. Each year, Hanukkah begins on the 25th day of Kislev, which is the ninth month of the Jewish calendar. It ends on the second day of Tevet, which is the tenth month of the Jewish calendar. So why does it fall on a different day each year? The Hebrew calendar is a lunar one, which means it's based on the cycles of the moon. Meanwhile, the Gregorian calendar, which is the one most of us use every day, is a solar calendar. That means it's based on the Earth's movement around the sun. Since the calendars follow different cycles, a holiday the falls on a fixed date on one calendar will fall on a different day each year on the other.
What is Hanukkah?
According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, Hanukkah is a festival that "reaffirms the ideals of Judaism and commemorates the rededication of the Second Temple of Jerusalem." The celebration was instituted by Judas Maccabeus in 165 BC to commemorate his victory over Antiochus IV Epiphanes, a Seleucid king who had invaded Judaea and tried to outlaw Judaism. The festival is celebrated by lighting the menorah each night, reciting special prayers, and eating delicious foods.
How many days is Hanukkah?
Each year, Hanukkah is eight days long. This amount of time has significance, as described in the Talmud. According to Encyclopedia Britannica, "When Judas Maccabeus entered the [Second Temple of Jerusalem], he found only a small jar of oil that had not been defiled by Antiochus. The jar contained only enough oil to burn for one day, but miraculously the oil burned for eight days until new consecrated oil could be found, establishing the precedent that the festival should last eight days." Today, that means we get more time to celebrate with friends and family. Want to learn more about this holiday? These are the most interesting facts to know about Hanukkah.
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