A Kosher Hanukah menorah is when 8 candle holders are in one line with a ninth Shamash, out of placed in height or position on the 9 branched menorah. The seven-branched candelabra depicted on the Arch of Titus became the official emblem of the state of Israel in the 20th century. The menorah also symbolizes the creation in seven days, with the center light representing the Sabbath. The menorah, a seven-branched candelabrum, is the oldest symbol of the Jewish religion, and a variation of it is used for the observance of Chanukah – the Festival of Lights. The hanukkiah, along with the seven-branched menorah and the Star of David, is among the most widely produced articles of Jewish ceremonial art. During the early modern period the menorah as symbol gave way to the Star of David, but in the 19th century it was adopted as the symbol of the Zionists. A Kentucky man was run over on Saturday during a Hanukkah celebration, according to police and CBS affiliate WKYT. The menorah is used during the eight-day celebration of Hanukkah. Menorah is the Hebrew word for lamp, and specifically refers to the seven-branched candelabrum that was used in the ancient Temple in Jerusalem. The Menorah as the Symbol of the State of Israel The symbol of the State of Israel is a Menorah, flanked on each side by an olive branch. The candlestick was to be forged out of a single piece of gold and was to have six branches, “three out of one side, and three out of the other” (Exodus 25:31). The Talmud (Menahot 28b) states that it is prohibited to use a seven-branched menorah outside of the Temple. The nine-branched variety is used only in relation to the Hanukkah (or Chanukah) celebration and is often referred to as a hanukiah (or chanukkiah). After the Temples were destroyed, a tradition developed not to duplicate anything from the Temple and therefore menorah's no longer had seven branches. The Hanukkah menorah therefore has eight main branches, plus a ninth branch set apart as the shamash (servant) light which is used to kindle the other lights. However most families use taper candles and holders to accommodate the shamash candle (the middle one that lights the others) so it stands highest. The Hanukkah menorah commemorates, but is distinct from, the seven-branched menorah used in the ancient Temple in Jerusalem. — Birnbaum, Philip (1975). It has been said that the menorah is a symbol of the nation of Israel and its mission to be "a light unto the nations." Although the menorah disappeared and the Talmud forbade its reconstruction, it became a popular symbol signifying Judaism. The Second Temple, built after the Jews returned from exile in Babylon, contained one menorah that was seized in 169 bce by Antiochus IV Epiphanes when he desecrated the Temple. Menorah, also spelled menora, multibranched candelabra, used in the religious rituals of Judaism, that has been an important symbol in both ancient and modern Israel. It has been said that the Menorah is a symbol of the nation of Israel and its mission to be “a light unto the nations” (Isaiah 42:6). Many Jews have a tradition to use a beeswax candle for the shamash.. ELLIOTT: What did the menorah in the ancient temple look like? Corrections? Thus, a hanukkiah, or Hanukkah menorah, is a type of menorah; every hanukkiah is a menorah, but not every menorah is a hanukkiah. In the Bible, God commands us to always keep the fire lit – 24 hours a day. Hanukkah lamp from Brody, Galicia (now in Ukraine), 1787; in the Jewish Museum, New York City. Chanukah (also spelled Hanukah or Hannukah) is the Jewish festival of lights and feast of dedication, a joyous holiday that celebrates the miracle of one day's quantity of oil burning for eight days in the menorah in the Temple of Jerusalem. It refers to the seven-lamp golden candelabrum that was used in the portable Temple (Mishkan) that was set up in the wilderness by Moses. The Hanukkah menorah commemorates, but is distinct from, the seven-branched menorah used in the ancient Temple in Jerusalem.The hanukkiah, along with the seven-branched menorah and the Star of David, is among the most widely produced articles of Jewish ceremonial art. The Menorah - YHWH Himself designed it! The directions for its construction came directly from God to Moses. The Menorah is a light stand in Hebrew which has been the pre-eminent symbol of Jews and Judaism for millennia. Wick holders are made from brass or glass; a pitcher pours oil; scissors snip wicks. The menorah is the 7 branch candelabra that stood in the Temple. Many Jews have a tradition to use a beeswax candle for the shamash.. According to the Mosaic Law, the menorah was lit every evening and cleaned every morning (Exodus 27:20-21). The Menorah – the candelabra – that the Jewish people light every Chanukah is connected to the Menorah that the Priests lit in the Temple every day. Roman soldiers carrying a menorah, detail of a relief on the Arch of Titus, Rome, 81. Menorah lighting is done on the first night of Hanukkah. Each branch … Some people also call it a candelabra or candelabrum. However most families use taper candles and holders to accommodate the shamash candle (the middle one that lights the others) so it stands highest. …Hanukkah lamp, or candelabra (menorah), which recalls the Temple lampstand, is kindled each evening. The menorah which stands today in Jerusalem's old city Jewish Quarter, overlooking the Temple Mount, is the work of the Temple Institute. Long before then, a menorah with seven branches was used. The Menorah is among the oldest and most revered symbols of Judaism. Menorahs with branches for nine candles are used exclusively for Hanukkah. Many Jews believe olive oil, used for the biblical original, is the most authentic fuel for menorahs. Modern replicas are also called a menorah. The light of the Menorah symbolizes an eternal flame. Menorah definition, a candelabrum having seven branches (as used in the Biblical tabernacle or the Temple in Jerusalem), or any number of branches (as used in modern synagogues). This type of menorah is called a hanukiah in Modern Hebrew. According to the Mosaic Law, the menorah was lit every evening and cleaned every morning (Exodus 27:20-21). The shamash – the "attendant" candle that is used to kindle the other lights – sits a bit higher or lower than the other candles, on the ninth branch of the menorah. The use of six-branched menoras became popular, but, in modern times, some rabbis have gone back to the seven-branched menoras, arguing that they are not the same as those used in the Temple because today's are electrified. Now that we've discussed the origin of the tradition, let us turn to the evolution of the menorah itself. A hanukkiyah is nevertheless a kind of menorah. Representations of the menorah decorated tombs and the walls and floors of the synagogues. The menorah—“lamp stand” in Hebrew—has been the pre-eminent symbol of Jews and Judaism for millennia. — Birnbaum, Philip (1975). Though we understand why we light menorahs for Hanukkah, no one can … In the Bible, God commands us to always keep the fire lit – 24 hours a day. Jewish sages teach that this menorah was the vessel that YHWH used to blend the spiritual life that is to come with the physical life of this world. Menorah lighting is done on the first night of Hanukkah. The menorah was originally built for use within the Jewish tabernacle constructed in the wilderness by the Israelites during the time of Moses. One of the oldest symbols of the Jewish faith is the menorah, a seven-branched candelabrum used in the Temple. Ultimately, the purpose of the menorah was not to illuminate the temple but to spread its light throughout the world. It is the oldest continuously used religious symbol in Western civilization. The sages emphasize that light is not a violent force; Israel is to accomplish its mission by setting an example, not by using force. Encyclopaedia Britannica's editors oversee subject areas in which they have extensive knowledge, whether from years of experience gained by working on that content or via study for an advanced degree.... Hanukkah menorah, silver with enamel medallions, by Johann Adam Boller, early 18th century. This Menorah used fresh olive oil to light its lamps. Wick holders are made from brass or glass; a pitcher pours oil; scissors snip wicks. Does a menorah have 7 or 9 candles? Menorah definition, a candelabrum having seven branches (as used in the Biblical tabernacle or the Temple in Jerusalem), or any number of branches (as used in modern synagogues). What is a menorah? The Menorah light is a free-standing translucent pylon light and the Star of David is translated into two hanging lamps constructed like Japanese lanterns of white parchment. The lamp has taken many forms through the ages, but its essential feature has been eight receptacles for oil or candles and a holder for the shammash (“servant”) light, which is used for kindling the other lights. The menorah ("lamp" in modern Hebrew) is the nine-branched candelabra used during the celebration of Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights. This menorah was made of pure gold and lit with consecrated fresh olive oil, as per the mandates of God. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. The Menorah and Hanukkah English speakers originally used the Hebrew borrowing menorah for the seven-branched candelabra used in Jewish worship since ancient times. Hanukkah is celebrated each year on the 25th day of the Hebrew month of Kislev. Judas Maccabeus ordered construction of a new seven-branched candelabra, which he placed in the Temple after the desecration by Antiochus. The seven branch candelabra is a menorah which was used in the holy temple. the continual lamp; usually translated as the eternal flame), symbolizes the menorah. The first appearance of menorah in history is associated with the wanderings of the Jewish people in the desert. The Hanukkah menorah therefore has eight main branches, plus a ninth branch set apart as the shamash (servant) light which is used to kindle the other lights. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. What is Menorah? The cup atop the central shaft, which is somewhat elevated to signify the Sabbath, was flanked by three lights on each side. Originally, the menorah was described as a seven-lamp lampstand fashioned of gold and included as part of the Tabernacle erected by the Israelites during their wanderings to … (Isaiah 42:6). The menorah disappeared after the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 ce; according to Josephus, the menorah was displayed during the Roman triumphal march, but the menorah displayed on the Arch of Titus is no longer thought to be the Temple candelabra. The menorah is described in the bible as the seven lamp (six branches) ancient hebrew lampstand, it contained pure gold and used in the portable sanctuary set up by Moses in the wilderness and later in the Temple in Jerusalem. It is a symbol of the Hanukkah miracle, oil burning miracle that lasted for eight days instead of one. This type of menorah is called a hanukiah in Modern Hebrew. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). 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