When Does Hanukkah Land In 2021?

Every year, people of the Jewish faith commemorate Hanukkah — an annual celebration of the festival of light. The holiday is celebrated over the course of eight days. Each day, a candle is lit on the menorah — a candelabra that holds nine candles, one of which, called a shamash candle, is designated to solely be a helper to light the others (via Chabad).

The origins of the holiday date back to the second century B.C. The Syrian-Greek Empire or Seleucid Empire once had control of Judea (now Israel) during that time period. Jewish people faced oppressive rule and were not allowed to practice Judaism; they had to follow the Greek faith of King Antiochus IV, resulting in the destruction of the Jewish Second Temple, per Britannica. During Antiochus' rule, there were also mass killings of Jews. But an uprising was in the works. It took about two years of revolution but, in the end, the Jews defeated and drove their oppressors out of the region (via History). In their rededication to their temple, Hanukkah was born when they went to light the oil — and the amount that they thought would last one day, instead burned for eight.

This year's Hanukkah season

In the Jewish calendar, Hanukkah takes place on the 25th day in the month of Kislev, per Chabad. In the Gregorian calendar, however, Hanukkah is typically going to fall somewhere between late November to late December. This year, the first day of the holiday falls on November 28 and will last until December 6, says National Today. Every night, a candle in the menorah is supposed to be lit.

The first candle to be lit on the first night of Hanukkah is the shamash. After it is lit, the shamash is then used to light the first night's candle, which is the furthest left. Every night afterward, the shamash candle will be used to light the candles on the menorah from left to right. Other candles are not allowed to be used to light the others — only the shamash (via Huffington Post). On the eighth and final day of the holiday, all nine candles will be lit.