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Lighting the Chanukah Menorah


Each night during Chanukah Jews light candles in a special candelabra called a Menorah (Hebrew: Hanukiyah). The center candle, called the Shamash, is always the first candle placed in the Menorah and the first candle to be lit each night. The remaining candles are placed and lit in a specific order depending on the night of the celebration.


When placing candles in the Menorah - the Shamash (center) candle is placed first. Then that night's candles are placed in the Menorah from right to left.


When the candles are lit, the Shamash would be lit first and then is used to light that night's candles - from left to right. And as the candles are lit each night a special prayer is recited. (Prayer for Chanukah Candle-Lighting)


Click on the videos below to see exactly how to place and light each night's candles.



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Candle-lighting: 1st Night of Chanukah


Placing the candles:

On the first night of Chanukah the center candle, the Shamash, is placed first in the Menorah. Then the 1st night's candle is placed in the farthest right spot.


Lighting the candles:

The Shamash, the middle candle, is lit first. The Shamash is then used to light the 1st nights candle.



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Candle-lighting: 2nd Night of Chanukah


Placing the candles:

The Shamash is placed first in the Menorah. Then a candle is placed in the first nights position followed by a candle in the 2nd right spot.


Lighting the candles:

The Shamash, the middle candle, is lit first. Then the Shamash is used to light the 2nd candle from the right, followed by the first candle.



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Candle-lighting: 3rd Night of Chanukah


Placing the candles:

The Shamash is placed first in the Menorah. Then a candle is placed in the first nights position followed by a candle in the 2nd and 3rd spots.


Lighting the candles:

The Shamash, the middle candle, is lit first. The Shamash is then used to light the 3rd candle from the right, followed by the 2nd and 1st candle.





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Candle-lighting: 4th Night of Chanukah


Placing the candles:

The Shamash is placed first in the Menorah. Then a candle is placed in the first nights position followed by a candle in the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th spots.


Lighting the candles:

The Shamash, the middle candle, is lit first. The Shamash is then used to light the 4th candle from the right, followed by the 3rd, 2nd and 1st candle.



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Candle-lighting: 5th Night of Chanukah


Placing the candles:

The Shamash is placed first in the Menorah. Then a candle is placed in the first nights position followed by a candle in the 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th spots.


Lighting the candles:

The Shamash, the middle candle, is lit first. The Shamash is then used to light the 5th candle from the right, followed by the 4th, 3rd, 2nd and 1st candle.



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Candle-lighting: 6th Night of Chanukah


Placing the candles:

The Shamash is placed first in the Menorah. Then a candle is placed in the first nights position followed by a candle in the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th spots.


Lighting the candles:

The Shamash, the middle candle, is lit first. The Shamash is then used to light the 6th candle from the right, followed by the 5th, 4th, 3rd, 2nd and 1st candle.



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Candle-lighting: 7th Night of Chanukah


Placing the candles:

The Shamash is placed first in the Menorah. Then a candle is placed in the first nights position followed by a candle in the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th spots.


Lighting the candles:

The Shamash, the middle candle, is lit first. The Shamash is then used to light the 7th candle from the right, followed by the 6th, 5th, 4th, 3rd, 2nd and 1st candle.



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Candle-lighting: 8th, and last, Night of Chanukah


Placing the candles:

The Shamash is placed first in the Menorah. Then a candle is placed in the first nights position followed by a candle in the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th spots.


Lighting the candles:

The Shamash, the middle candle, is lit first. The Shamash is then used to light the 8th candle from the right, followed by the 7th, 6th, 5th, 4th, 3rd, 2nd and 1st candle.








Like this article?

Related Articles:
When is Chanukah?
The Chanukah Dreidle
Play the Dreidel Game
The Story of Chanukah
The Prayer for Lighting the Chanukah Menorah


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Comments
Comment
Gabriele Delgado from Texas, US
14:49 12/17/2009
 
I want to share the lighting of the Chanukah Menorah, can you give me the English translation of the Menorah prayer? Thanks so much, that way I can say it in Hebrew and she can repeat it in English. I am an incrafted branch, part of the One New Man of our Messiah.
Comment
Amada Curling from New Jersey, US
15:26 12/08/2009
 
Very nicely and simply done...
Comment
Melody from Indiana, US
04:45 12/07/2009
 
Thank you. I just found out I am Jewish on my mother's side. I have always been drawn to my ancestry and as a practicing Messianic, I have no one to really help me. There is no congrgation of Messianic's in my area, so I am doing this learning on my own.
Comment
Dr Keith Babcocki from Montana, US
11:55 12/06/2009
 
It seems that the Festival of Lights may well b e the Conception of Yeshua as He was born during Succot.. every one should read Zechariah 14: 16-17
Comment
Rev. Carol Ann Poisson from Massachusetts, US
17:34 12/03/2009
 
I just Love your page. I am a Minister, and did some research on Christmas, and when I read Jeremiah 10. My eyes opened so wide, I could not believe it. I was a Catholic for 52 years, and I am so happy that I am out of there. I Just Love your Holiday. I will be Praising Our God, and thank you so very much. God Bless You. In His Service Rev. carol Ann Poisson
Comment
Norman Kailo from New Jersey, US
17:24 12/29/2008
 
After lighting our candles, we place an electric Menorah in our front window and turn each bulb on in the proper order and leave them displayed for the next day. This includes all the bulbs for the eighth night and the eighth day. One of our friends tells me that we are not supposed to celebrate the eighth day but to put away our Menorahs after the eighth night. Please clarify.
Comment
Zelia from FINLAND
15:37 12/28/2008
 
shoud l let th0se candle burning untill the end every day, and replace them the next day or shoud?
Comment
karen from Massachusetts, US
18:54 12/26/2008
 
What does it mean if candle/candles get blown out?
Comment
Louie (webmaster) from New York, US
08:17 12/22/2008
 
In response to the electric Menorah - I don't know of any actual rules relating to this. I am thinking this is probably at a place of work or similar situation. They way we handle it is the center (Shamash) is lit as well as the light (s) for that day of Chanukah. So - since today is the first day of Chanukah - we would have the center and the first candle (light) lit. And its the first DAY of Chanukah until sundown. If you are still there at sundown then I would light the 2nd nights candle (light). Etc. Hope that helps.
Comment
Jerry Pohl from New Jersey, US
17:01 12/21/2008
 
What are the rules for an electric Menorah that is left on all day? Do we jusy light the next light going from right to left. The Shamash is in the center.



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