Vienna City Prayer House

14 April 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  10 minutes

© Bic/cc-by-sa-4.0

© Bic/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Stadttempel (English: City Prayer House), also called the Seitenstettengasse Temple, is the main synagogue of Vienna, Austria. It is located in the Innere Stadt 1st district, at Seitenstettengasse 4. The synagogue was constructed from 1824 to 1826. The luxurious Stadttempel was fitted into a block of houses and hidden from plain view of the street, because of an edict issued by Emperor Joseph II that only Roman Catholic places of worship were allowed to be built with facades fronting directly on to public streets. This edict saved the synagogue from total destruction during the Kristallnacht in November 1938, since the synagogue could not be destroyed without setting on fire the buildings to which it was attached. The Stadttempel was the only synagogue in the city to survive World War II, as German paramilitary troops with the help of local authorities destroyed all of the other 93 synagogues and Jewish prayer-houses in Vienna. The Jewish community in Vienna today has about 7,000 members and thus represents the largest part of the Jews living in Austria. The Jewish Museum Vienna offers guided tours of the city temple.   read more…

Synagogue of Halle (Saale)

27 January 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  5 minutes

Halle Synagogue © Allexkoch/cc-by-sa-4.0

Halle Synagogue © Allexkoch/cc-by-sa-4.0

The synagogue of Halle (Saale) is the house of worship of the Jewish community in Halle (Saale), which had 555 members in 2018. The building was originally built in 1894 as the Tahara House of the Jewish cemetery, laid out in 1864 northeast of downtown Halle, from white and yellow bricks according to plans by the architects Gustav Wolff and Theodor Lehmann. The conversion to a synagogue took place from 1948 after some renovations (consecrated in 1953) as a replacement for the old synagogue in the city center, which was destroyed during the November pogroms in 1938.   read more…

Konstanz New Synagogue

9 November 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  7 minutes

New Synagogue © Waithamai/cc-by-sa-4.0

New Synagogue © Waithamai/cc-by-sa-4.0

The synagogue in Konstanz, the district town of the district of Konstanz in Baden-Württemberg, was built in 1882/1883 and destroyed during the November pogroms in 1938. This first synagogue was on Sigismundstrasse. A new building was inaugurated in 2019. The Jewish community of Konstanz tried to build a synagogue from 1872. The property at Sigismundstrasse 19 was purchased from the Konstanz Hospital Foundation and, thanks to numerous donations and a loan, the financing was secured. The synagogue was built according to the plans of the architect and city builder Holzmann from Constance. The inauguration, attended by numerous representatives of the state and municipal authorities and the Christian churches, took place on September 28, 1883.   read more…

Portuguese Synagogue in Amsterdam

14 October 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  2 minutes

© A.A.W.J. Rietman/cc-by-sa-4.0

© A.A.W.J. Rietman/cc-by-sa-4.0

The Portuguese Synagogue<, also known as the Esnoga, or Snoge, is a late 17th-century Sephardic synagogue in Amsterdam, completed in 1675. Esnoga is the word for synagogue in Ladino, the traditional Judaeo-Spanish language of Sephardic Jews. The Amsterdam Sephardic community (History of the Jews in Spain, History of the Jews in Portugal, Alhambra Decree) was one of the largest and richest Jewish communities in Europe during the Dutch Golden Age, and their very large synagogue reflected this. The synagogue remains an active place of worship and is also a popular tourist attraction.   read more…

Ohel Jakob synagogue in Munich

25 June 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  7 minutes

Jewish Center Munich: Ohel Jakob Synagogue, Jewish Musuem and Jewish Community Center (from left to right) © Schlaier

Jewish Center Munich: Ohel Jakob Synagogue, Jewish Musuem and Jewish Community Center (from left to right)
© Schlaier

Ohel Jakob (from Hebrew: “Jacob’s Tent”) is a synagogue in Munich in Germany. It was built between 2004 and 2006 as the new main synagogue for the Jewish community in Munich and is located at the Sankt-Jakobs-Platz. The synagogue was inaugurated on 9 November 2006 on the 68th anniversary of the Kristallnacht. The building is part of the new Jewish Center consisting of the synagogue, the Jewish Museum Munich and a community center.   read more…

New Synagogue Berlin – Centrum Judaicum

9 November 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Berlin, General, Museums, Exhibitions Reading Time:  13 minutes

© Holz85/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Holz85/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Neue Synagoge (“New Synagogue”) was built 1859–1866 as the main synagogue of the Berlin Jewish community, on Oranienburger Straße. Because of its eastern Moorish style and resemblance to the Alhambra, it is an important architectural monument of the second half of the 19th century in Berlin. Jewish services are now held again in the New Synagogue; the congregation is the Berlin community’s sole Masorti synagogue. Most of the building, however, houses offices and a museum. The dome may also be visited.   read more…

Old Synagogue in Essen

18 October 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  8 minutes

© Tuxyso/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Tuxyso/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Old Synagogue (German: Alte Synagoge) is a cultural meeting center and memorial in the city of Essen in Germany. It is located in the center of the city on Edmund-Körner-Platz 1 (formerly Steeler Straße 29), close to the present city hall. The memorial center was founded in 1980 and is accommodated in the pre-war Jewish community’s synagogue. The synagogue, together with the attached Rabbinerhaus (House of the Rabbi), which today houses the Salomon Ludwig Steinheim Institute, was finished after a two-year construction period in 1913. It was originally consecrated as the Neue Synagoge (New Synagogue). Today the building is one of the largest, best preserved and architecturally most impressive testimonies to Jewish culture in pre-war Germany.   read more…

Choral Synagogue of Vilnius

14 October 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  3 minutes

© Kontis Šatūnas

© Kontis Šatūnas

The Choral Synagogue of Vilnius in Lithuania is the only synagogue in Vilnius that is still in use. The other synagogues were destroyed partly during World War II, when Lithuania was occupied by Nazi Germany, and partly by the Soviet authorities after the war.   read more…

Dohány Street Synagogue in Budapest

28 June 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Museums, Exhibitions Reading Time:  9 minutes

© Thaler/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Thaler/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Dohány Street Synagogue, also known as the Great Synagogue or Tabakgasse Synagogue, is a historical building in Erzsébetváros, the 7th district of Budapest, Hungary. It is the largest synagogue in Europe, seating 3,000 people and is a centre of Neolog Judaism. The synagogue was built between 1854 and 1859 in the Moorish Revival style, with the decoration based chiefly on Islamic models from North Africa and medieval Spain (the Alhambra). The synagogue’s Viennese architect, Ludwig Förster, believed that no distinctively Jewish architecture could be identified, and thus chose “architectural forms that have been used by oriental ethnic groups that are related to the Israelite people, and in particular the Arabs”. The interior design is partly by Frigyes Feszl.   read more…

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