Chanukkah (cha-noo-KAH) listen
Chanukkah (CHA-nuh-kuh) listen
Hanukkah (HAHN-uh-kuh) listen


  • n. The winter-time festival that commemorates the rededication of the Temple after the Maccabean revolt in the second century B.C.E.

Example Sentences

  • "We will be having a party on the first night of Chanukah."

Languages of Origin

  • Textual Hebrew


  • חנוכה, lit. 'dedication'

    • Who Uses This

      • Jews: Jews of diverse religious backgrounds and organizational involvements
      • Non-Jews: (words that have spread outside of Jewish networks)


      • North America
      • Great Britain
      • South Africa
      • Australia / New Zealand


      • The New Joys of Yiddish, by Leo Rosten and Lawrence Bush (New York, 2003[1968]).
      • The JPS Dictionary of Jewish Words, by Joyce Eisenberg and Ellen Scolnic, (Philadelphia, 2001).
      • The Joys of Hebrew, by Lewis Glinert (New York, 1992).
      • Dictionary of Jewish Usage: A Popular Guide to the Use of Jewish Terms, by Sol Steinmetz (Lanham, MD, 2005).

      Alternative Spellings

      Cannuka, Chanuka, Hanukka, Hanuka, Khanike, Chanukah, Hanukah, Chanukkah, Hannukah, Channuka, Channukah, Festival of Lights


  • The "ch" sound is pronounced mostly by older Jews and younger Jews with religious backgrounds.

    The spelling is a source of popular discourse, e.g., here.

    Also called the Festival of Lights.

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