Hilchos Chanukah: When to Light


menorahThere are various opinions amongst the Rishonim and Poskim as to the proper time that one should light the Menorah, ranging from sunset (shkiah) to a half hour after Tzes Hakochavim (first stars or night – i.e. Up to 72 minutes after sunset). Different minhagim are followed in different parts of the world relating to the length of time between sunset and Tzes Hakochavim. Shulchan Aruch w/Mishna Berurah & Bi’ur Halacha 672:1

opinion of Rav Moshe Feinstein and Rav Y.S. Elyashiv is to light 10 minutes after sunset; the opinion of Rav Aaron Kotler and the Chazon Ish (and the Gerrer Rebbes) is to light 20 minutes after sunset; the opinion of the Chasam Sofer and the Kitzur Shulchan Aruch and the Aruch Hashulchan is to light at Tzes Hakochavim. Others light within the first half hour after night. (One should follow his father’s minhag). Igros Moshe 4:101 and Oz Nidbiru 7:7:70, Halichos Yosef 672:1, Piskei Tshuvos 672

{On Friday nights the Menorah may not be lit later than sunset, and on Motza’ei Shabbos not earlier than Tzes Hakochavim.}

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