Day five of the Miracle of Lights!
What is “gelt” and why is it associated with Chanukah?
Gelt is the yiddish word for money. Back in the 18th century (and maybe earlier) in Poland, parents would give their children gelt to learn Torah during Chanukah. The children would save the gelt and on the last day of the holiday, each child would take 10% of the money they saved and give it to charity. In this way the children were learning Torah along with the importance of sharing what they had earned with those who were in need.
In addition to giving gelt to children to learn Torah, parents would give gelt for the children (usually boys because girls did not go to school at that time) to take to their rabbis during Chanukah, a gift of gratitude. Gelt was used for playing dreidel, too, and in early 20th century America (1920 to be exact) chocolatiers began making chocolate gelt, wrapping them in gold or silver foil, and packaging the gelt in small yellow net bags (money bags) for Chanukah treats. These treats make their appearance around Chanukah time to this day, and we are reminded of the importance of learning Torah, giving charity . . . and playing fun games and eating sweet delicacies during Chanukah!
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20 thoughts on “Fifth Day and the Light is Spreading!”
Thanks for the interesting lessons Cecelia. Happy Chanukah.
Thanks Huffygirl. Merry Christmas. 🙂
Good Morning Cecelia! I just came by to wish you continued Good Holiday Wishes!
How sweet! Blessings to you on this cold, crisp holiday morning, and may you enjoy the day to it’s fullest. Thanks for stopping by.
Protestants have a type of gelt. It’s to make us feel bad. I’m gelty for this, I’m gelty for that. Hey, I never ate the dang apple. Adam did. He’s gelty. I’m innocent.
Bet the Jews are just as good at the “gelt” as the protestants! Hahaha And Jewish mothers are experts at “gelting” their kids. And we are all still pretty ticked with Adam and the “gelt” we bear from that fiasco!
Max is going to be Bar Mitzvah this march and he is also giving portion of his chanukah gelt to a charity. Happy Chanukah !
Mazel Tov! Let me know as the date gets closer.
Wishing you and your family all life’s sweet blessings…Happy Chanukah. What an inspiring event and celebration. A gift to our younger generations.
Thanks IT. Hope you holidays have been blessed, too. Thanks for stopping by.
I hope that you and your family have been having a wonderful holidays, Ms. F!
Thank you SIG. We send our greetings to you for a wonderful holiday, too. 🙂
Wonderful tradition . . . and delicious! 😀
Thanks! It has been cool for me to think about the different customs, foods, meaning of everything this year. Glad you are enjoying it.
Thanks for the continued lesson in Hanukkah! Sorry I’m so late getting here!
Glad you are enjoying it. 🙂 Two more nights and then we are done for this year.
They still use the word gelt in germany.
Wow, I did not know that. Thanks for the update.
That picture of your menorah is so beautiful and watching the lights increase daily is fantastic,.. My kids always loved getting their gelt. I still buy it during the holidays! 😉
Glad you like it! I had fun writing the Chanukah series. 🙂