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jwg

Christmas and Chanukkah on same day

After Christmas dinner today at fj and pinkfish's, someone was wondering how frequently does the first night of Chanukkah fall on Christmas day. I surmised that if it were on the nth day of a certain month and that since there were either 12 or 13 months in a year it would be approximately every 60 years. This would be a good reason for most people not remembering a prior occurance.

And sure enough, a quick web check about Jewish calendars showed that Channukah falls on the 25th of Kislev, the 9th month.


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There was an article in the Guardian/Grauniad Christmas Eve (I think) that stated that Hanukkah falls on Christmas every 19 years. Sure enough, the Grauniad site gives this URL

http://www.guardian.co.uk/christmas2005/story/0,,1673773,00.html

in which it states that because of the arrangement of the Jewish calendar, Jewish festivals fall on the same date every 19 years.

But, according to this jewish calendar website s well as anaother I looked at Channukah in 2024 falls on Dec 25, but in 1986 fell on Dec 26.

I suspect it has something to do with the Sabbath. At the Help link there: http://www.hebcal.com/help/holidays2.html#sunday-fast-days it states that someimes festivals are moved one way or the other because of the Sabbath. Christmas was a Thursday that year, and I think that the 8th day fell on a Sabbath. In any case, lunar/solar correspondences are somewhat difficult.

I was just remarking earlier that the arithmetical incompatibility of the lunar and solar cycles (not to mention day length) pretty well disprove Intelligent Design.

disprove Intelligent Design

Which proves *you* don't understand the theory behind Intelligent Design. A trip to reeducation camp is in order!

Oh, I understand the theory all right. Disproving it is kind of irrelevant in that context, I guess.

It doesn't have to do with the Sabbath; Hannuka is 8 days, and there's always at least one Sabbath in it. People light larger-than-usual candles just before Shabbat starts, and that's good for that night.

It might have to do with when the leap days/leap months worked out, something like that.

Hey thanks for sharing this. I asked the same question to eric_mathgeek at my evening gathering, and it was a nice topic of discussion. But not even the jews in the room knew how Hannukah was determined!

by the way, After Glenn and I left yesterday, he said, "Please tell me those two are brothers, and not a couple." I had to reply, "Sorry, I guess that's what happens after over 30 years with someone. And besides, that's what ALL aging computer geeks look like!" :-)

If I had a dollar for every time somebody asked if we were brothers, I could retire.

(Oh, wait a minute...)

And besides, that's what ALL aging computer geeks look like!

If pinkfish looks like me 15 years from now I'll be somewhat surprised.

If I look like either of you (now) in 15 years, I'll be surprised.

the thing is, you don't really look alike except in the most general sense. otoh, people used to ask ayana and me if we were sisters. that was not exactly a striking resemblance.

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