Chanukah: The Festival of Lights

Chanukah is the Jewish mid-winter Festival of Lights (chag ha-urim) which commemorates the victory of the Maccabees over the armies of King Antiochus Epiphanes IV of Syria in 165 B.C.E. Legend has it that a small cruse of oil, when used to relight the menorah in the Temple, miraculously lasted for eight days. In fact, Chanukah means dedication and marks the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem following its desecration by the Syrians.

Jews throughout the world celebrate Chanukah for eight days, beginning the 25th day of the Hebrew month of Kislev. This year, Chanukah will be celebrated beginning sundown December 13, 1998 through sundown December 21, 1998.

The Story of Chanukah

(The history of Chanukah, as recounted by Rabbi David E. Lipman in The Book of Jewish Knowledge: 613 Basic Facts About Judaism)

Texts related to Chanukah (from the Talmud, First and Second Maccabees, and Josephus)

Chanukah Service for the Home

(you're welcome to download this and use it)

Chanukah Service for the Synagogue

(you're welcome to download this and use it)

Celebrating Chanukah

Pretty pictures of chanukiot (Chanukah menorahs)