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Lighting The Menorah On Erev Shabbat

Updated: Nov 16, 2023

The Daily Halacha Moment - Menorah On Erev Shabbat 🕎

‎״כל השונה הלכות בכל יום - מובטח לו שהוא בן

העולם הבא״ (נידה עג ע״א, מגילה כח:)

“Anyone who studies Halachot every day is guaranteed that he is destined for the world-to-come” (Megilla 28b, Niddah 73a)


What should one light first on Erev Shabbat?

How should one light the menorah on Erev Shabbat?


On Erev Shabbat, the Chanukah lights are kindled before the Shabbat lights. [1]

If one, whether a man or woman, accidentally lit the Shabbat lights before lighting the Chanukah lights, the Chanukah lights may still be lit.

However, if one accepted Shabbat with his lighting, then another person in the household who did not accept Shabbat yet should light the Chanukah lights instead. [2]

Furthermore, One should make sure there is enough oil in the menorah at the time of lighting to burn for thirty minutes after tzet hakochavim. Therefore, one should be careful not to light the menorah too early. The best time to light the menorah on erev Shabbat is around fifteen minutes before shkiyah. [3]

Adapted From R' Yonatan Nacsons "Laws Of The Holidays"


[1]. Shulchan Aruch 679 §1. See also Ben Ish Chai, Vayeshev 1:20, which states that even for Kabbalistic reasons, the Shabbat lights should not be lit before the Chanukah lights, even if a man is lighting the Chanukah lights and the woman is lighting the Shabbat lights.

[2]. Mishnah Berurah §1 and Kaf HaChaim §3. Chazon Ovadia, Chanukah, p. 176 says that according to the Shulchan Aruch, lighting the Shabbat lights is not necessarily enough for one to accept Shabbat. If one verbally accepted the Shabbat through his lighting, though, then he may not perform melachah, and should ask someone else to light the Chanukah lights for him. See also Ohr LeTzion, vol. 4, 43:8 and Teshuvot HaRishon LeTzion, vol. 1, p. 126.

[3]. See Mishnah Berurah §2, which states that at least one of the lights that were lit should still be burning by tzet hakochavim for one to fulfill the mitzvah. See also Chazon Ovadia, Chanukah, p. 71, which states that if one realizes that he did not put enough oil, he should exinguish the lights, add oil, and then relight them without a berachah. See also Yalkut Yosef, Chanukah, p. 544 and Ohr LeTzion, vol. 4, 43:8.

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