Tiberian Marḥešwān; from
Akkadian waraḫsamnu, literally, "eighth month"), sometimes shortened to Cheshvan (חֶשְׁוָן,
Tiberian Ḥešwān), is the second month of the civil year (which starts on 1
Tishrei), and the eighth month of the ecclesiastical year (which starts on 1
Nisan) on the
In a regular (kesidran) year, Marcheshvan has 29 days, but because of the
Rosh Hashanah postponement rules, in some years, an additional day is added to Marcheshvan to make the year a "full" (maleh) year. Marcheshvan is an autumn month which occurs in October–November in the
Given the Akkadian etymology, it seems likely the מ and the ו were switched at some point in time, since w-r-ḥ is the Semitic root for "moon" (and thus also "month"), and š-m-n is the Semitic root for "eight". Also, מ and ו are
labials. Since then, the first two letters מַר (mar) have been re-interpreted as the Hebrew word for bitter, alluding to the fact that the month has no holidays or fasts.
Ethiopian Jewish community celebrates
Sigd on the 29th day of Marcheshvan (50 days from
Yom Kippur, analogous to counting 50 days from
Shavuos), as recognized by the Israeli
Knesset in July 2008.
Hebrew Bible, before the
1 Kings 6:38). In Sidon, the reference to Bul is also made on the Sarcophaugus of
Eshmunazar II dated to the early 5th century BC.