When does Chanukah Start in 2015?

When is the start of Chanukah 2015? See our chart of Chanukah dates—plus, some history about this festival.

Chanukah History

The festival commemorates events that took place in Judea more than 2,000 years ago, when the Syrian king Antiochus ordered the Jews to abandon the Torah and publicly worship the Greek gods. This act provoked a rebellion led by Judas Maccabeus, climaxed by the retaking of the Temple in Jerusalem, which had been desecrated by the Syrians. In an eight-day celebration, the Maccabees (as the rebels came to be known) cleansed and rededicated the Temple (Chanukah means “dedication”). According to the Talmud, there was only enough consecrated oil to re-light the candelabra for one day, yet, miraculously, it remained lit for eight days. The central feature of the observance of Chanukah is the nightly lighting of the Chanukiah, an eight-branched candelabra with a place for a ninth candle, the shammes, used to light the others. One candle is lit on the first night of Chanukah, and an additional candle is lit on each successive night, until, on the eighth night, the Chanukiah is fully illuminated.

Chanukah Start Dates 2015

Note: This eight-day Jewish festival begins the evening of the day listed below at sundown.

Year First Day of Chanukah
2014 Tuesday, December 16
2015 Sunday, December 6
2016 Saturday, December 24

If you're planning a Chanukah feast, see our recipes for traditional latkes, jelly dougnuts, and 15 more Chanukah recipes.

If you celebrate Chanukah, please share your traditions below!


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The Greek gods were

The Greek gods were worshipped by the Syrians because their king was a descendant of one of Alexander's generals, so the Syrians were colonized by the Greeks. In Jesus' day, under the Roman occupation, the miracle of the oil was the public celebration, as a remembrance of a sucessful insurrection wouldn't have gone over too well with the Romans.

Channukah, starts like most

Channukah, starts like most Jewish holidays in the evening. It says in the Old Testament; First there was evening, and then there was light, thus was the first day. Jewish people have always followed this that the new "day" starts in the evening. Thus is the same for this holiday; as the first candle is lit that evening (December 16, 2014) and it is then a "day" for 24 hours. Thus the second "day" is December 17th, although it may be the first "daylight" is now the second "day" of activities.

There are plenty of good resources on line, including chabad.org, aish.com or evening google will have given you more correct information on start times and wikipedia has history. Since you are sending out this "information" as "factual" please check your facts before printing.

If in doubt, I am sure there is a local Jewish congregation somewhere to you.

Thank you.