Hanukkah, a holiday commemorating the miracles surrounding the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem in the second century BCE

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Attending public Menorah lightings before lighting at home

When someone is attending a public Menorah lighting, what should one do vis a vis the Mitzvah and the Berachoth? Should one say "She'Asah Nisim"? If it's the first night, should one say ...
2
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1answer
62 views

3 tefachim minimum height for candles on Chanukah - from the flame itself, or base of the chanukiyah?

For Chanukha Shulchan Aruch (תרעא:ו) writes: ...מניחו למעלה משלשה טפחים To which the Mishneh Berura writes: דכל למטה משלשה כאלו הניח בקרקע ואין ניכר שבעל הבית הניחו שם "For anything ...
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8answers
4k views

How are Spartans the son of Abraham?

I was reading the Book of Maccabees (I and II) over Shabbat and in it there is a letter written to Sparta to ask for peace, goodwill and friendship. In the reply letter back from Sparta, they affirm ...
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1answer
115 views

Do Karaite Jews Celebrate Chanuka?

As far as I know, Karaite Judaism recognizes the Tanakh only as its source of Jewish Law and practice. However Karaites do celebrate Purim based on the Book of Esther, so they do observe non-mosaic ...
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2answers
292 views

What does the word לאַטקעס (latkes) mean? [closed]

לאַטקעס is the Yiddish word used for the potato pancakes commonly and commemoratively eaten on Chanukah. Where does the word לאַטקעס come from originally? What exactly does it mean?
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0answers
21 views

Why a different list and different order in על הנסים and in הנרות הללו?‎

On Chanuka, we thank God in the amida (sh'mone esre) and grace after meals ועל הנסים ועל הפרקן ועל הגבורות ועל התשועות ועל הנפלאות ועל הנחמות ועל המלחמות שעשית לאבותינו בימים ההם בזמן הזה for ...
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1answer
81 views

In what sense is Hanukkah “a Yom Tov like other yamim tovim”?

The Machzor Vitry (§234) finds a scriptural source for Hanukkah in Leviticus 24:2. That the stipulation that Israelites should collect pure olive oil for the menorah should follow on from a ...
4
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1answer
85 views

Chanukah Bushes?

Every year, I hear people (typically heterodox or jokers) talking about "Chanukah bushes" (likely a parallel to Christmas trees). Now, beyond the obvious of this not being a traditional practice, ...
3
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0answers
38 views

Permissibilty of Chanuka bushes, dreidels, gelt, and Chanuka presents

Maimonides codifies the biblical prohibition of keeping gentile customs (Laws of Idolatry 11:1): אין הולכין בחקות העובדי כוכבים ולא מדמין להן לא במלבוש ולא בשער וכיוצא בהן שנאמר ולא תלכו בחקות ...
2
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1answer
48 views

Using someone else's Menorah

I used my brother's menorah on Chanuka , did I perform the mitzvah correctly or does the menorah have to be mine?
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4answers
128 views

Lighting at a Chanukah Party

If I am eating at a Chanukah party in a different place than my home, may I light the Menorah at the location of the Chanukah party and be Yotzeh?
4
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1answer
67 views

Chanukiah location

What it the ideal place to put a chanukiah for lighting? Is it better to put it in the window, outside or inside? Does it depend on where you live?
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2answers
400 views

Why do we celebrate Chanukah?

The more I read about Chanukah, the less I understand why we celebrate the holiday. The victory, as I understand it, was costly and very short-lived. Yes, the Temple was restored, but only to be ...
3
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2answers
369 views

Why can't we light Channukah Candles in the Day

We are commanded to light Channukah candles at night, to usher in each day of the holiday, and, if my memory serves me, we may light as long as there are people outside who can see the candles (ad ...
4
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4answers
258 views

Why don't we light the full menorah all 8 days?

If the reason we light candles on Chanukah is as a commemoration for the fact that the lights of the menorah burned for 8 days on fuel that was only sufficient for 1, why don't we light our menorahs ...
3
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2answers
99 views

Should a beracha be recited for a public Hanukkah lighting? Who should/can recite it?

My office wants to light Hanukkah candles. Who should/can light the candles? Should a beracha be recited?
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2answers
56 views

Why is “Pirsumei Nissa” (publicizing the miracle of Chanukah) so important?

There are 3 halachot that I have located that are related to the reason of Pirsumei Nissa - publicizing the miracle of Chanukah (Undoubtedly, there must be others: Chanukah candles must be lit in a ...
3
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1answer
50 views

Shabbos Chanuka - Rosh Chodesh - Torah reading mistake

Orach Chaim 684:3 says that on Shabbos Chanuka that is also Rosh Chodesh we take out three Sifrei Torah. In the first one we give six Aliyos in the Parsha of the week. In the second one we read about ...
6
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1answer
53 views

חַשְׁמוֹנָאִי or חַשְׁמוֹנַאי which is correct?

Artscroll English Siddur has in the על הנסים the word as חַשְׁמוֹנַאי. The Artscroll all Hebrew Siddur has the word as חַשְׁמוֹנָאִי. Which is correct? Is there a difference in meaning if it is ...
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2answers
33 views

eternal flames and channukah

I have once heard that there was a miraculous eternally burning flame present in the Temple. I have never found the source for this midrash or its hebrew name (I thought the Ner Tamid referred to ...
2
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1answer
21 views

Source for lighting candles in a circle being OK b'dieved

I recently played a Chanukah quiz game with friends. One of the questions was "is it permissible to light candles in a circle". The correct answer was "yes, b'dieved". I have always heard that the ...
3
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2answers
44 views

Any significance of Hakhel to Chanuka?

On an advertisement for the Lubavitch National Menorah lighting at the White House this year, I saw a little banner that said "Hakhel Year! Special Gathering!" or something of that sort (I don't have ...
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1answer
266 views
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2answers
39 views

Clarification on “use” of Chanukah candles

In the Haneirot Halalu paragraph, said by many, after lighting the Chanukah candles, there is a phrase stating "we are not permitted to use them". I also understand that the candles must stay lit for ...
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1answer
41 views

For those accustomed to leaving a shamash lit, must the shamash be lit “l'shem mitzvah”?

There is a custom brought by the Rema to leave an additional candle lit during the lighting of the Menorah at Hanukkah. Does this candle need to be lit for the sake of the mitzvah, or can one use a ...
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1answer
53 views

Cutting Chanukah Candles

I know someone who teaches a weekly Kiruv and Hebrew class and wants to light a menorah before the class, to show them how. However, this class only lasts about and hour long, so is it permissable to ...
3
votes
1answer
64 views

What should one do if the shamash burns away before the other candles?

One important reason to keep a shamash candle burning in a hanukkiah is because Hanukkah candles are not supposed to be used except for fufilling the mitzvah. The shamash candle allows one to use its ...
3
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0answers
50 views

Latkes with applesauce

If one eats a latke with applesauce should he make a bracha on the applesauce (is the applesauce considered tafel to the latke ? )
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0answers
30 views

Lit the menorah at my mother's home, then again at my home. Which brachot are said?

Note: This is related to Lighting the menora in shul and at home. How many brochos need be said?, except that in that case one of the occasions involved a minyan, and the explanation offered ...
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0answers
50 views

Menorah lighting at work and saying shechechiyanu [closed]

According to European/Ashkenazi customs, if one is asked to light the menorah at work approximately 10 minutes after sunset, Is it a problem: to say the blessings at work to say the blessings again ...
11
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9answers
1k views

Why are there eight days of Chanukah if there were only seven miracles?

There is a famous question asked by the Beis Yosef (R' Yosef Karo): Why do we celebrate eight days of Chanukah if the miracle lasted only seven? The jug of oil contained enough to be lit for one day, ...
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1answer
60 views

Is one allowed to transfer the oil between the Chanukah candles and frying latkes?

Can one use the leftover candle oil (after the candles have burned out) to fry his latkas, and then "recycle" that oil back for the next night's candle oil? Is there any concern that the oil must be ...
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1answer
73 views

Can one light Chanukah candles with ear wax?

Can one light Chanukah candles with ear wax? I'm not suggesting that people actually do this, as it is weird. But, I'm asking this in terms of allowable halacha. I know that the 2nd chapter of Talmud ...
2
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0answers
46 views

Info on Chanukah oil burning lengths

If I recall correctly, Chanukah lights must burn until at least 1/2 hour after nightfall (or after they are lit). I know that different types of oil burn faster or slower. Would someone know if there ...
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0answers
66 views

What does a Hanukkah oil lamp look like? [duplicate]

Is there such a thing as a "correct" design or appearance for an oil lamp in the context of Hanukkah, whether prescribed by religious law, long tradition or any other metric? If so, what does one look ...
3
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1answer
69 views

Turning to the right vs. practice

Mishna Berura 676:10 quotes our sages: "Whenever you make a turning, it should only be towards the right". However, it appears to me that we usually turn to the left (counter-clockwise) when shaking ...
3
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0answers
39 views

Why isn't the miracle of Channukah mentioned in Selichot?

In the selichot service, we have a prayer which lists the historic times when Hashem answered prayers (even implicit ones). The "mi she'ana" prayer starts with Avraham on Har Hamoriah and moves ...
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4answers
175 views

Is Hanukkah a holiday or a festival? Is there a difference?

I recall hearing that Hanukkah (or maybe Purim) is a festival, rather than a holiday. Is this true? Is there a difference?
11
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1answer
282 views

What is the origin of the claim that they played games to hide Torah learning prior to Chanuka

This question makes a very commonly heard claim: "Before the miracle of Hanukkah, when those who controlled the land severely restricted Torah study, Jewish children would gather to study Torah in ...
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5answers
148 views

What did “נ ג ה ש” stand for before the Hanukkah miracle?

A well known reason we play dreidel on Hanukkah is this: Before the miracle of Hanukkah, when those who controlled the land severely restricted Torah study, Jewish children would gather to study Torah ...
2
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0answers
54 views

Rav Moshe's Chanuka additions to Baruch Hashem Yom Yom

This morning in Shul I saw a pamphlet that said as follows. The song Boruch Hashem Yom Yom, the sixth stanza is referring to Chanuka. It said in this pamphlet that Rabbi Moshe Feinstein Zatzal would ...
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0answers
10 views

Why don't we say al hanissim in al hamichya? [duplicate]

Al hanissim (על הניסים) is a short addition to shemoneh esrei and birkas hamazon on Chanukah and Purim; however, there is no corresponding bit that's added to al hamichya, unlike retzei (for Shabbos) ...
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2answers
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Channukah and Bal Tosif

There are questions on the site which deal with saying Hallel on Channukah but my question seeks a more fundamental insight: The Ramban writes on Devarim 4:2 that a violation of Bal Tosif is creating ...
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2answers
118 views

Are the letters on a dreidel supposed to be in any particular order?

This is a little silly, but... Should the letters on a dreidel be in order? Like, if you turned it right to left, should it go nun - gimel - hey - shin, because of "nes gadol haya sham"? Or are there ...
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2answers
62 views

Why no argument between Bet Shamai & Bet Hillel regarding how to count the Omer?

For Chanukah, Bet Shamai says that on the 1st night we start with 8 candles and each successive night one less. Bet Hillel says we start with 1 and increase each successive night. Why was there no ...
5
votes
3answers
160 views

Flying During Channukah Candle Lighting

Obviously you cannot light candles on a plane, so if you can't light candles within the time frame is there any other activity one could do, which is permissible on an airline, that would fulfill the ...
5
votes
1answer
56 views

Why no addition to me'ein shalosh for Purim (and Chanukka)?

We add a paragraph to birkat hamzon for Purim (and for Chanukka). Why is there no phrase added to the me'ein shalosh (the bracha acharona) for Purim (and Chanukka)?
10
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1answer
244 views

Eating out Friday night of Chanukkah

If one is lighting Chanukkah candles inside (for whatever reason) relying on the publicization to himself and his family, then what should he do on Friday night if he is eating out? Must he make the ...
4
votes
2answers
91 views

What was the volume of oil for one day's lighting of the Menorah?

Large jars for storing oil or wine were common in Judah. For 100’s of years, oil and wine were the commodities that were used to pay tribute and taxes. Many storage jars were standardized and may ...
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1answer
34 views

Which Way To Light Candles On Chanukah

If Hillel and Shammai (as individuals) disagreed on only a few cases (which way to light is NOT one of them), then they must have agreed on this issue. One lights candles each year. How is possible ...