Old Synagogue in Krakow

Kazimierz's Old Synagogue, the Top Jewish Monument in Krakow.

Krakow’s Old Synagogue

Kazimierz's Old Synagogue, the Top Jewish Monument in Krakow.

Krakow’s Old Synagogue (Polish: Stara Synagoga) ranks with the most ancient Jewish places of worship in Europe. For centuries it was central to the life of the former Jewish quarter in Kazimierz, once Krakow’s rival city and now one of its downtown districts.

Krakow's unique landmark

The 16th-century brick synagogue was built next to the 14th-century city walls at the south end of Szeroka street. Burnt in 1557, during the subsequent reconstruction it was given a Renaissance facelift evident in its outer shape, while the interior architecture has remained unmistakably Gothic. When men congregated in the spacious arched hall, women watched from the adjacent Female Room accessible by the side door with a porch.

After the Nazis had ruined it during WW2, the Old Synagogue was rebuilt in the mid-1950s.



Home to the Jewish museum in Krakow

Since 1961 the Old Synagogue at 24 Szeroka street in the Kazimierz historic district has housed the museum of Jewish history and traditions, a branch of the City of Krakow Historical Museum. The grand Gothic interior of Poland’s oldest synagogue has been restored to the past splendor with the help of museum pieces from other places. Plus it has been crammed with extras: relics of Krakow’s former Kazimierz Jewish quarter, items relating to religious rites and family traditions, pictures, old photos, documents.



Tags: | Poland | Krakow | Religion | Jewish |



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