The celebration began Saturday night with the lighting of the menorah, which consists of eight candle branches with an additional raised branch. The world over, the Jewish people will be observing the eight-day holiday that commemorates the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem during the Maccabean revolt that overthrew the Seleucid monarchy in 167 BCE.
Each night, candles are lit on the menorah to recall the miracle of how a single day’s worth of ritual olive oil lasted eight days and nights when the Maccabees purified the temple, which had been profaned with pig sacrifices and pagan rituals during Seleucid rule.
The eight days was significant because that was how long it took to prepare new oil for the temple’s rites of worship.
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