HANUKKAH , CHANUKKAH
Hanukkah, which means "dedication" and is also referred to as "The Festival of Lights", is a Jewish festival which begins on the Hebrew date of the 25th of Kislev and lasts eight days, through the 2nd of Tevet. This year, that corresponds to December 7th through December 15th. Hannukah commemorates the victory of the Maccabees (led by Judah) over the Hellenistic Syrians in a revolt that took place around 165 BCE (note: Jews use BCE--Before the Common Era and CE--the Common Era instead of BC and AD).
The victory in itself was considered a miracle, but Jewish legend gives an additional explanation for Hanukkah rituals, explained below. Once the Temple Mount in Jerusalem had been reclaimed, the Temple had to be rededicated. According to legend, only one jar of sacramental oil was found, enough for one day. Miraculously, the oil burned for eight days, thus the eight days of Hanukkah.
The most important Hanukkah ritual is the candle lighting. Jews light candles in a special candleholder called a "menorah" or a "hanukkiah". Each night, one more candle is added. The middle candle, called the "shamash", is used to light each of the other candles and it is lit every night. Therefore, on the first night of Hanukkah, two candles are lit (the shamash and the candle for the first night) and on the last night, there are nine lit candles.
It is traditional to eat foods fried in oil during Hanukkah. Some common foods are potato latkes and "sufganiot" (jelly doughnuts).
All the Solid brass Hanukkah menorahs hand made in Israel by Chen Judaica in Jerusalem.