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How to Spell Hanukkah

Hanukkah is the only holiday that freaks out your spell check. And that confusion is deeper than you think.

Published: December 17, 2011


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Visitor Comments: 17

(13) bill price, December 14, 2014 9:40 PM

i want it as correct as possible

because i can't write hebrew and dont want to seem like a dumb goy to my jewish friends. they would not wish me a merry krissmus. shalom

(12) Anonymous, November 21, 2013 7:18 PM

Too much time on your hands

It's a cute video, but I think some of you just have too much time on your hands. Who cares how to spell it? R' Tzvi was just trying to bring out a point. Chill.

(11) Yosef Dov, January 22, 2013 1:21 PM

yet another spelling for Chanukah

I think that an alternate spelling of that holiday should be Annuca, Annucas, or anything like that, because that's a Greek-influenced alteration that goes even better with English, French, and many other European languages than Hannukah or its ilk and certainly Chanukah or its ilk. It's sort of like how to render the name Chana or Hannah - it's often rendered in European languages as Anna, Anne, or anything like that. Notice that Chana and Chanukah have some of the same letters in Hebrew, esp. the "chet" and the "nun". (And Annuca sounds awfully like Annika, a diminutive of Anna, as in Annika Sorenstam, the professional tennis player.) In terms of the suffix, Mattityahu often becomes Mattathias (as well as Matthew), Yonah often becomes Jonas (as well as Jonah), etc. Notice that in this case, an "s" is added in the end, also a Greek influence that has been transposed into other European languages. In summary, something like Annuca, or Annucas if you wish!

Yisroel, December 14, 2014 6:09 PM

very learned comments, Yosef Dov, but

According to your erudite comment, I wonder why you sign as Yosef Dov? Certainly, "Yoseph" is more correct, as the "f" is a corrupted softening of Vav (hence its placement in the sixth position) as opposed to the "ph," where the he is used to allow air to merge with the hard p sound to soften the p correctly. Also, the Y consonant in German is always written with a J. A German looking at "Joseph" would say "Yosef," just as ahe would say "yah" when reading "yes," the source of the English"yes." So Joseph's is the correct rendition. And of course Dov is "properly" rendered in Germanic languages as "Be[a]r."
Therefore, you should be signing as Joseph Bear/Ber.
Unless, in honor of Chanukkah you sign as "Josephus Bearus!!"
Happy Annuka!

(10) Henry Wiltschek, December 24, 2011 3:24 PM

You always learn something new

A very educational presentation.

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