In which month is Rosh Hashanah ?

In the Hebrew/Jewish calendar, Rosh Hashanah is in the Hebrew/Jewish month of Tishri or Tishrei. The Hebrew/Jewish month of Tishri or Tishrei is the seventh month in the Hebrew/Jewish calendar.

Has Rosh Hashanah always been in the month of Tishri or Tishrei ?

Originally, according to the biblical book of Vayikra, in Vayikra 23:23-25, meaning Leviticus 23:23-25 in Hebrew, G-d commanded that a one-day holiday was to be commemorated on the first day of the seventh month in the Hebrew/Jewish calendar. This holiday, based on the verses from Leviticus 23:23-25, was known as "Yom Teruah" ("Day of Sounding the Shofar or Ram's Horn" in Hebrew) and "Zikaron Teruah" or "Zikkaron Teruah" ("Day of Remembering the Sounding of the Shofar" in Hebrew). Thus, the name Rosh Hashanah was originally not connected to this one-day holiday, and was only known as Rosh Hashanah in Mishanic times, about 10 B.C.E. until about 200 C.E. or 220 C.E., when the Mishnah of the Talmud was compiled and codified. However, in the late Second Temple period, about 1 C.E. to 70 C.E., the methods of determining and confirming the appearance of the first crescent of the new moon which signified a new month led the Sages of the Sanhedrin, the Jewish "Supreme Court" and legislative body that was based in Jerusalem, to extend Rosh Hashanah from a one-day holiday to a two-day holiday for all Jews, both inside and outside Israel, to ensure that all Jews would commemorate this holiday in unity, which indicated the importance of this holiday in the Hebrew/Jewish calendar. In fact, the rabbis declared that the two-day holiday of Rosh Hashanah would be a "Yoma Arichtah" or "Yoma Arichta", meaning Rosh Hashanah would be considered as "one long (single) day" of 48 hours in Aramaic, so that all Jews worldwide would be able to celebrate Rosh Hashanah on the "same day", otherwise, time zone differences meant that Jews in one part of the world could be starting Rosh Hashanah while other Jews would still be preparing for Rosh Hashanah or that the Jews who started Rosh Hashanah before Jews in other parts of the world might be finished with commemorating Rosh Hashanah while those other Jewish people would still be celebrating Rosh Hashanah. The purpose of creating a "48-hour day" was to unite the Jewish people as one so that all could feel the joy of Rosh Hashanah as one people and with this knowledge, strengthen the emotional and historical bonds that unite all Jewish people.

Although Rosh Hashanah was extended to become a two-day holiday in the late Second Temple period, the methods used to determine and confirm the new moon which indicated a new month was such that the new moon and hence the new month for the Hebrew/Jewish month of Tishri or Tishrei could occur on either the 30th day of Elul - the final day of the month prior to Tishri or Tishrei - or on the first day of Tishri or Tishrei. This meant that the now two-day holiday of Rosh Hashanah could occur either from the beginning of the 30th day of Elul at sunset to sunset at the end of the 1st day of Tishri or Tishrei, or from the beginning of the 1st day of Tishri or Tishrei at sunset to sunset at the end the 2nd day of Tishri or Tishrei. Eventually, it became more popular and hence customary to commemorate Rosh Hashanah on the first day and second day of the month of Tishri or Tishrei.

When does Rosh Hashanah occur in the modern Gregorian calendar?

Since the Hebrew/Jewish calendar is a lunisolar calendar, that is, it determines a lunar month as a month that begins with sighting the first crescent of a new moon and lasts until the next sighting of the first crescent of a new moon and also bases a solar year on the length of the sun's cycle of four seasons, this meant that the Hebrew/Jewish lunisolar calendar could be either 353, 354, or 355 days. The Gregorian calendar is strictly a solar calendar of 365.24 days (366 days in a leap year), which meant that its calendar was based solely on the length of the sun's cycle of four seasons to determine a year in the calendar. By periodically correcting itself by adding an extra month every 3 years, the shorter Hebrew/Jewish calendar "catches up" to the longer Gregorian calendar. All of this means that the first day of Tishri or Tishrei in the Hebrew/Jewish calendar will "drift" backwards in the Gregorian calendar from one year to the next year in the Gregorian calendar until the correction of adding a month in the Hebrew/Jewish calendar to align itself with the Gregorian calendar will advance the day of Rosh Hashanah forward in the Gregorian calendar. Therefore, the day of Rosh Hashanah stays within a certain range in the Gregorian calendar and hence can occur either in September or October in the modern Gregorian calendar.

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Rosh Hashanah
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