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    ? – 165 BCE

    When we were in college, we took a Jewish history course because it fulfilled multiple requirements for graduation we wanted to learn about our heritage. We don't remember much from the class, except for the following bombshell:

    The Hanukkah story we were told as children is a lie.

    Come to think of it, it makes a lot of sense. Eight days of magical oil! They probably underestimated. Or maybe someone re-filled the oil in the middle of the night. Yeah, that makes the most sense.

    But it goes beyond the oil. The whole story of Hanukkah is supposedly a sham. The whole spiel about Matityahu and his five sons, including the famed Judah the Maccabbee... you gotta take it with a grain of salt. Jews defeating Assyrians? More like Jews defeating other Jews. Ugh.

    So now, when we have children of our own, which version of the Hanukkah story do we tell them?

    The one with eight days of magical oil. We're not monsters.

    Verdict: Jew.

    December 17, 2014

    See Also

    Simon bar Kokhba

    Hanukkah Harry

    Judah Maccabee


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