Alternative Spellings

hannuka, chanuka, hanukka, hanuka, khanike, chanukah, hanukah, chanukkah, hannukah, channuka, channukah


  • The winter-time festival that commemorates the rededication of the Temple after the Maccabean revolt in the second century B.C.E. (lit. "dedication")

Example Sentences

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

Languages of Origin

Textual Hebrew



Who Uses This

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


North America


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


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., http://ejewishphilanthropy.com/what-is-the-most-popular-way-to-spell-hanukkah/

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