Six things You Didn't Know About Dreidels
As we roll down that long road to Hanukkah, today's post is dedicated to dreidel trivia. Did you know:
Dreidel is a variation of Teetotum, a popular gambling game when the Roman Empire ruled Israel. The rules were the same, only the letters changed. It's unknown whether the Jewish version originated during Roman times or much later, because the game was popular throughout Europe for a very long time.
The world's largest dreidel was 18 feet tall and made out of recycled materials. It had to be hoisted upright by a small crane and it took three people to spin.
In gematria, where each Hebrew letter is assigned a number to represent it, the letters nun, gimmel, heh, and shin add up to 358, the same numerical value as Meshiach (or messiah).
Dreidel is a winner-takes-all game. Each player starts with the same number of gelt. The game continues until one person has every other player's money. There's no time limit, the length of the game depends on how many coins each person starts with.
Dreidel was supposed to be played with the money kids got from their parents. Back in the day, Jewish parents didn't give giftsm they gave kids money (gelt). That's where people got the inspiration for gold coins. We guess dreidel was a way to teach kids a lesson about not wasting their money on silly games. Party poopers!!!
One rabbi in Brooklyn claims to have over 1,000 dreidels from all over the world. Watch his video:
Fun stuff, right? Can't wait until Hanukkah gets here!!!