Social

Why Are There 8 Days of Hanukkah?

why are there 8 days of hanukkah, how many days in hanukkah, 8 days of hanukkah history

The National Menorah, part of the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah, is seen near the Washington Monument in Washington, DC on December 10, 2015.
The holiday commemorates the re-dedication of the holy temple in Jerusalem after the Jews’ 165 B.C. victory over the Hellenist Syrians when Antiochus, the Greek King of Syria, outlawed Jewish rituals and ordered the Jews to worship Greek gods. (Getty)

With the stress of gift-giving and travel, it’s easy to lose sight of the religious significance of the holidays. Instead of focusing on why we celebrate them in the first place, our attention drifts to scoping out the best deals and how to keep ourselves from eating too many mashed potatoes. The fact of the matter, however, is that the holidays are rich with religious history– Hanukkah, for example, is observed for eight nights, and the reason behind this lies in battles fought long ago.

Read on to learn why there are eight days and nights of Hanukkah.

Alexander the Great became king of the Ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon in 336 BCE after his father’s death. Under his reign, Macedon (otherwise known as Macedonia) conquered Syria, Egypt, and Palestine, and allowed these countries’ inhabitants to observe their own religions and remain relatively autonomous. Alexander the Great’s successor, however, a Syrian-Greek emperor named Antiochus, exercised a stricter relationship with these countries, and began to oppress the Jews by outlawing Jewish rituals and ordering them to worship Greek gods.

These regulations angered the Jews, and they decided to fight back. Led by Judah Maccabee, the Jews fought their Greek-Syrian oppressors for three years, and eventually succeeded in driving them out of Judea in the Maccabean Revolt. Afterwards, the Jews restored the Temple of Jerusalem, and cleaned out the Temple by removing all Greek symbols. When this was done, Judah and his followers celebrated by lighting an oil lamp. Because the Greeks had defiled the temple, there was only enough oil left for one day. Astonishingly, the lamp remained lit for eight days.

The story of Hanukkah is contained in the books of the First and Second Maccabees, which are included in the Old Testament used by the Catholic and Orthodox Churches. The holiday is celebrated on the 25th of the month of Kislev for eight days and eight nights, and can take place anywhere from November to early January. This year, Hanukkah will start the evening of Saturday, December 24, and end on the evening of Sunday, January 1.

Celebrity Breakups of 2016: A Look at the Couples Who Have Split

A number of celebrity couples broke up this year. Find out which famous couples split, and got divorced, in 2016.

Click here to read more

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

2 comments

  1. WCRTEXTAREATESTINPUT9937525

  2. There are 8 days in order to give liberal/progressives another day to bash “joos!” and encourage others that seek their extermination. It’s what leftists always wanted…and still do.