Hanukkah (19/12)

Hanukkah is a Jewish holiday of candles that are lit in honor of the miracle that occurred at the consecration of the Temple after the victory of the troops of Yehuda Maccabee over the troops of King Antiochus in 164 BC. This holiday begins on the 25th of the Jewish month of Kislev and lasts eight days.

In 332 B.C. Judea voluntarily came under the rule of Alexander the Great, who adhered to a policy of non-interference in the religious life of the Jews. After the death of Alexander in 323 BC. and the many wars that his heirs waged among themselves, the Egyptian Ptolemaic dynasty came to power, and the next century passed in a state of relative stability.

In 198 B.C. The Ptolemies were defeated by the Seleucids (Assyrian Greeks), and Judea also fell into their hands. At first, the general situation seemed unchanged and even somewhat improved. The Jews received written guarantees confirming their right to live "according to the laws of their fathers", and the tax burden was somewhat reduced. But then the Seleucids began to attempt to Hellenize the Jews. Greek philosophy and culture gradually began to penetrate into the Jewish environment.