National Israel Day is observed on February 4 to honour all individuals with the name Israel. Israel, often spelled Yisrael and Yisroel, is a biblical family name. It is a Hebrew name, and its meaning is “God’s Warrior.” This is a biblical moniker given to Jacob during his struggle with an angel. Jews started using the name. It also refers to the destruction of the ancient Israelite kingdom by the Assyrians in 721 B.C. It currently refers to the modern nation of Israel. In modern Britain, particularly in Wales, it is common practise to adopt a biblical name.
HISTORY OF NATIONAL ISRAEL DAY
In the late seventh century, a bishop of Caucasian Albania was the first to mention the name Israel. In 682, he attempted unsuccessfully to convert Alp Iluetuer, the monarch of the North Caucasian Huns, to Christianity. Israel is the most popular name associated with the nation. Its origins can be traced back to the era of King David around 1000 B.C. It is said that his son, King Solomon, constructed the first holy temple in ancient Jerusalem. Around 931 B.C., the land was divided into two kingdoms: Israel in the north and Judah in the south.
In 722 B.C., the Assyrians invaded and destroyed the northern kingdom of Israel. In 568 B.C., the Babylonians conquered Jerusalem and destroyed the first temple, which was later rebuilt in 516 B.C. From 1517 until 1917, the Ottoman Empire ruled what is now Israel and much of the Middle East.
Israel has been the name of an ethnic group in the Levant for at least 3,200 years, based on the oldest documented usage of the term in the written record, which occurred in ancient Egypt. On the Merneptah Stele, also known as the “Israel Stele,” is an inscription in hieroglyphics. Dated to the late 13th century B.C., the inscription “Israel is laid waste, its descendants are extinct” was uncovered.
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Celebrations and Events
February 4 is National Israel Day, a day to celebrate the country and its culture. There are many ways to celebrate National Israel Day. Here are some ideas:
1. Attend an Israeli cultural event. Check your local community calendar for events happening near you.
2. Learn about Israeli history and culture. Read a book, visit an online museum, or watch a documentary about Israel.
3. Make traditional Israeli food. Try your hand at making falafel, hummus, or Jerusalem salad. You can find recipes online or in cookbooks specializing in Middle Eastern cuisine.
4. Listen to Israeli music. Explore the work of popular Israeli musicians like Idan Raichel, Asaf Avidan, and Amir Dadon.
5. Send a greeting card to someone in Israel. Show your support for the country by sending a holiday card or e-card to friends or family members who live there.
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National Israel Day is a celebration of the nation of Israel and its unique culture, history, and people. It’s an opportunity to recognize the accomplishments of this remarkable nation and to honor those who make it great. We are proud that on this day each year we can come together in solidarity with our Israeli friends to celebrate their achievements and share in their pride.
NATIONAL ISRAEL DAY DATES