Hanukkah Lamp

Unknown Artist/Maker19th-early 20th century

The Jewish Museum, New York

The Jewish Museum, New York

The central decorative element on this lamp is the seven-branch menorah, flanked by two vases. The majority of lamps of this type bear two Hebrew inscriptions. The first, "The seven lamps shall give light in front of the lampstand" (Numbers 8:2), describes the menorah of the Temple in Jerusalem. The second, "Blessed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and blessed shalt thou be when thou goest out" (Deuteronomy 28:6), is a reference to where the Hanukkah lamp should be placed. From ancient times, the lamp was supposed to be hung on the doorpost of one's home, to publicize the miracle that took place during the Maccabean revolt. As one entered the door, the lamp would be on the left, opposite the mezuzah. Although in later times many Jewish communities came to place the light indoors, Moroccan Jews have preserved the earlier tradition.
Four very similar examples, now in the Israel Museum, were obtained in Tétouan in the late 1940s and 1950s, suggesting the origin for this type.

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  • Title: Hanukkah Lamp
  • Creator: Unknown Artist/Maker
  • Date Created: 19th-early 20th century
  • Location: Tétouan, Morocco, Africa
  • Physical Dimensions: 12 1/16 × 10 × 2 3/4 in. (30.7 × 25.4 × 7 cm)
  • Type: Ceremonial Art
  • Rights: https://thejewishmuseum.org/about-this-site#terms-conditions
  • External Link: View this object at thejewishmuseum.org
  • Medium: Copper alloy: traced, punched, pierced, appliqué, and cast