Friday, December 23, 2005

The root

gue ke dictionary gue, en i wanted to know where the word "hanukkah" en "christmas" were from...en i got this:


More than 2,000 years ago, when the Syrian-Greek King Antiochus IV occupied Jerusalem, he forced the Jews to worship the Greek gods. For three years, Judah the Maccabee (also Judas Maccabeus) led a rebellion against the Syrians, and when he finally defeated them in 165 BCE, the Jews could worship freely again. To rededicate the temple, they cleaned it up from top to bottom and then relit the menorah, their special branched candelabrum. They could only find enough consecrated (pure) oil for one day, and it would take eight days to prepare more oil. They managed to make the oil in the bottle last eight days and Hanukkah celebrates both this and the rededication of the temple. Today, families gather around a menorah and light one candle on the first night of Hanukkah, two on the second, and so on for all eight nights of the festival. There are songs, stories, presents, food fried in oil (latkes, jelly doughnuts called sufganiyot) and prayers. Children play games of chance with the spinning tops called dreidels.
Hanukkah (also spelled Hanukka, Chanukah, Chanukkah), is from Hebrew and means "consecration, dedication." It was first recorded in English in 1891. Hanukkah is observed somewhere between November 25 and December 26, from 25 Kislev to 2 Tevet, because the original rededication was on the 25th day of the Jewish month of Kislev. The celebration is also called the Festival of Lights, Feast of Lights, Feast of Dedication, or Feast of the Maccabees.


Christmas is from the Old English words Cristes moesse, 'the mass or festival of Christ'. The first celebration took place in Rome about the middle of the fourth century. The exact date of the Nativity is not known, but even in pre-Christian times the period from December 25 to January 6 — now known as "The Twelve Days of Christmas" — was considered a special time of year. The abbreviation Xmas, thought as sacrilegious by some, is entirely appropriate. The letter X (chi) is the first letter in the Greek word for Christ.


have fun!

0 Comments:

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home