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The holiday of Passover, or Pesach, follows the Hebrew calendar. This year, Passover in the U.S. falls on the evening of Monday, April 14, 2014. The holiday lasts a week, and will end on the night of Tuesday, April 22.
According to the Hebrew calendar, Passover falls on the 15-22 of the month of Nissan and this year is 5774.
In Canada, the UK, and Israel the holiday is celebrated on the same day.
Traditionally, the first two days of Passover, from sundown the first date to nightfall two days later, are full-fledged no-work holidays. Everyone greets others with “Happy Passover” or “Chag Sameach” (Happy Holidays). Those who follow the holiday closely also don’t drive, write, or switch on or off electric devices.
The Hebrew calendar is considered a lunar-solar calendar. The length of days are controlled by the times of sunset and sunrise, and the length of day varies depending on the season.
Months, on the other hand, follow the phases of the moon, but the months must also align with the right seasons, which are governed by the sun.
Since the solar year is 365 days, and the lunar year is 354 days, leap years (“pregnant years” in Hebrew) are added to fix the discrepancy. Unlike Gregorian calendar leap years which add an extra day in February (Feb. 29), Hebrew calendar leap years add a whole extra month.
Thirteen-month leap years occur 7 times in a 19-year cycle.
The following are corresponding dates for Passover on the Gregorian calendar for the next three years:
Sundown Wednesday, April 3, to evening Saturday, April 11
Sundown Wednesday, April 22, to evening Saturday, April 30
Sundown Saturday, April 10, to evening Tuesday, April 18